ICANN should establish its global humanitarian reach

ICANN51 in Los Angeles brings together technocrats, entrepreneurs and other bright-minded individuals, in a gathering that projects ample lavishness despite recent cuts in spending.

And yet, the agenda of such a large organization with a cash reserve in the hundreds of millions of dollars and a global reach, does not appear to include any kind of humanitarian work.

Every time you register or renew a domain, you pay the ICANN fee; the latter is $0.18 currently.

With tens of millions of domains in active registration status, that fee translates into a steady stream of revenue.

The launch of new gTLDs have strengthened the ICANN cash reserves, even further; the $185,000 application and $25,000 annual renewal fee for Registries, far exceeds the numbers generated by the domain registration and renewal fee.

If ICANN allocated just 10% of those funds to a trust performing humanitarian work, the seemingly pitiful $0.018 would go quite far, when funds accumulated.

Think about cleaner water projects, funding of medical supply provisions, or education for impoverished parts of the World – all coming from intangible, digital assets such as domain names. It’d be a global contribution, from millions of people worldwide.

This is the type of humanitarian contributions that would indeed make ICANN shine globally, shedding its bureaucratic, authoritarian vest and helping with truly global issues worldwide.

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