ICANN (The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) signed a new affirmation of commitment document with the US government (see the video clip). The document is another milestone in a series of reforms that ICANN started six years ago. The goal of this reform to transform ICANN to a more independent entity (in other words, less dependent on the U.S), more transparent (there were many complaints around this issue), and more egalitarian (i.e., its board will be more global).
The document highlights three major things:
1. An agreement on a long-term relationship with the U.S..
2. The base of ICANN will stay on a U.S. soil.
3. ICANN committed to create suitable accountability mechanisms. The main difference from the past is that now ICANN will have to be accountable to all the members on its board and not only the U.S. government.
In other words, ICANN progressed one step further towards independents. Maybe the U.S does not grab ICANN in a bear hug anymore, but no doubt that it still grabs ICANN with a "bear cub" hug.