Key House lawmakers raised concerns Tuesday that the international entity that administers the Internet may be moving its headquarters from California to Brussels, Belgium.
According to unconfirmed reports, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, currently based in Marina Del Ray, Calif., has been said to be making the overseas move at the urging other governments and some industries.
House Energy and Commerce Chairman John Dingell and ranking member Joe Barton joined 14 other colleagues in asking Commerce Secretary Gutierrez for more information about ICANN's future within the next two weeks.
"Any change that threatens the important U.S. role in promoting U.S. commercial and free speech principles on the Internet can only hurt the consumers and businesses that count on this network every day," the lawmakers wrote to Gutierrez.
The letter also praised the Bush administration's continued oversight of ICANN, which is in the midst of a transition shifting more coordination of technical functions of the Web to the private sector.