Some of the world's most authoritarian regimes introduced a new proposal at the World Conference on International Telecommunications on Friday that could dramatically extend the jurisdiction of the International Telecommunication Union over the Internet.
In a Friday night email to Ars Technica, a spokeswoman for the American delegation portrayed the introduction of the new proposal by the United Arab Emirites partway through a key Friday negotiating session as a surprise—and an unwelcome one at that. Negotiators were irritated that they had not been furnished with copies of the proposal before it was formally introduced to the conference.
A copy of the proposal was released by the website WCITLeaks on Saturday morning. It is labeled as a proposal made by Russia, the UAE, China, Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Sudan, and Egypt (though at least one Twitter user denies that Egypt supports the document).