Poll: Almost 2/3 Oppose US Giving Up Control of the Internet

Rasmussen’s latest polling effort shows that almost 2/3 (61%) of voters oppose the United States abdicating control of the internet. Last week, the government quietly announced that it would relinquish control over the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) when its contract expires in the fall of 2015. Control will move to a yet-to-be established international body. Only 18% approve of the transfer. 

More than half expect the move to make things worse. “Fifty-two percent (52%) think international control will make the Internet worse, but that’s less suspicious than voters were two years ago when we first asked this question.”

An impressive 69% prefer the “free-market” development of the internet over more government involvement.  A paltry 15% would like to see more government involvement. 

Notably, the younger cohort aged 18-39 is more likely (24%) than middle-aged 40-64 (16%) to favor ceding control, although a clear majority all age groups oppose the effort.  We find a similar age breakdown when voters were asked if it was likely that Russia or China or Iran would attempt to censor the internet.  Only 20% of those between the ages of 18-39 believed that internet censorship was very likely while 36% of middle-agers thought so. 

Nevertheless, that same younger age group favors the “free-market” development over more government involvement, with 76% of 18-39 year olds saying so.