Subcommittee Affirms United States’ Commitment to Internet Freedom

April 11, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC – The Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, chaired by Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR), today advanced legislation to promote a global Internet free from government control. The bill, approved by voice vote, contains the same language that unanimously passed the House and Senate last year, elevating it to official U.S policy rather than merely a sense of the Congress in light of continued international efforts to regulate the Internet.

“Governments’ hands-off approach has enabled the Internet to grow at an astonishing pace and become perhaps the most powerful engine of social and economic freedom and job creation the world has ever known. Under the current multi-stakeholder governance model, non-regulatory institutions manage and operate the Internet by developing best practices with public and private sector input," said Chairman Walden.

During the proceedings, Chairman Walden also clarified the intent of the legislation and agreed to continue to work with the minority to seek bipartisan consensus. Click here to view Walden’s full remarks.

On February 5, 2013, the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology and the Foreign Affairs Subcommittees on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade and Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations held a joint hearing to discuss efforts by some countries to expand international regulation of the Internet. In the 112th Congress, the House and Senate adopted resolutions with overwhelming bipartisan support opposing efforts at the World Conference on International Telecommunications to drag the Internet within the purview of the International Telecommunications Union, a U.N. agency.

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