Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers

While we were talking about ICANN and how internet domains are expanding, I started thinking about Rachel Green inclusion of Paul Garrin’s in her article. I found it ironic how Garrin set out to make domain names less monopolized by corporations and individuals and how, 16 years later, a corporation is taking proposals and bids for domain names. ICANN stands for “Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers”. Assigned Names and Numbers? That sounds like something from a dystopian or totalitarian society like in George Orwell’s 1984 or Ayn Rand’s Anthem, but those are just my thoughts. ICANN argues that adding new domains will allow more competition of managing the internet and, in turn, establish a process for the US Government to manage it “based on the principles of stability, competition, bottom-up coordination, and representation” ( I’m curious to see if ICANN’s domain idea restrict the flow of information or help to categorize it. I’m thinking the former since it is primarily for either big business or people with a lot of money, but nonetheless it will be interesting to see what comes from it.

It seems that just shortly after Rachel Green wrote her article in 2000, the internet has become more and more commercialized, which goes against the main concept of the majority of the artist Green mentioned. However, this materialistic aspect of the internet helps internet art to further define itself and follows Galloway’s idea that internet art defines itself in a similar way that video art was able to distinguish itself from highly commercialized television. This brought to mind Jodi’s recent works about there being “something wrong if nothing is wrong”. Works such as “Max Payne Cheats Only 1” seem to play off the idea that the video game commodity is more fun when you can see its glitches. Jodi’s concept that malfunction is what makes technology interesting and worthwhile contradicts the concept of corporate structuring and the constant strive to “perfect” the internet.

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