The US government has renewed its contract with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann) for managing top-level technical functions for the internet.
The agreement does not affect the memorandum of understanding between Icann and the US Department of Commerce, but grants Icann exclusive rights until 2011 to continue running the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), which primarily includes assigning IP addresses and managing the domain name system.
The contract is subject to annual review.
In February, the Department of Commerce effectively put IANA out to tender to see whether other organisations could run the technical aspects of internet governance, but has since concluded that Icann is best qualified for the task.
The IANA has been managed by not-for-profit Icann since 2000. The memorandum with the Department of Commerce concerns putting Icann into the private sector.
Members of the European Union and United Nation's Working Group on Internet Governance have criticised the proposed Icann sell-off, claiming that the relationship puts Icann further under control of the Federal government.
The memorandum expires on 30 September.
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