On August 3, 2015, The European Institute held a breakfast discussion on the European Union’s Digital Single Market Strategy with Ambassador Daniel Sepulveda, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and U.S. Coordinator for International Communications & Information Policy; Andrea Glorioso, Counselor for the Digital Agenda & ICT at the Delegation of the European Union; and Marie Royce, Vice President Public Affairs at Alcatel-Lucent. Thorough conversations with stakeholders are underway on the 16 initiatives of the strategy, which places digital technologies at the forefront of the EU's push for sustainable and competitive economic growth. While the panelists lauded the strategy overall, differing approaches on a range of issues such as spectrum management, copyright reforms, intermediary liability and data localization were discussed. Dr. Michael Nelson, Public Policy at CloudFlare moderated the discussion.
The U.S. Commerce Department recently announced that it is prepared to relinquish its contracting role with ICANN for the provision of the IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) services. IANA provides a crucial function for the internet by processing and approving changes in the root zone file. This will likely reduce the power of U.S. government unilaterally to oversee or regulate ICANN’s processes for making policies that bind internet registries, registrars and registrants by means of mandatory flow down contracts.
The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is expected to be “a high-standard agreement that will benefit U.S. workers, manufacturers, service suppliers, farmers, ranchers, innovators, creators, small- and medium- sized businesses and consumers.” In part, this “high-standard” will be achieved by a “deep dive” into regulation. . With the globe’s two largest markets already having substantially open markets, particularly in information, communications and technology (ICT), regulatory convergence will be at the center of discussions, which means that the rules and authority of regulatory bodies will be front and center. For ICT, the key challenge will be facilitating the free flow of data over the cloud while protecting privacy rights and data security. A subsidiary challenge will be covering – while not fettering – services that enable social media and other “apps” that did not exist the last time services trade was included in a multilateral agreement.
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