Russia cuts off ICANN funding after pro-Ukraine stance

Russia did not pay its usual annual tribute to ICANN in the Org’s fiscal 2023, newly published funding data reveals.

Coordination Center for TLD RU usually funnels $50,000 a year into ICANN’s budget, but that was reduced to nothing in the year to June 30, 2023, according to ICANN’s FY23 annual report, published today.

While it could of course be a coincidence, I rather suspect it’s retaliation for ICANN’s overt support for Ukraine following Russia’s invasion last year. counts the Russian Ministry of Communications and Mass Media as one of its “founding members”.

ICANN donated $1 million to the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster, a relief organization, to support Ukrainians affected by the war, and gave the Ukrainian government a platform to denounce the war at a public meeting.

Later last year, ICANN also lobbied against the Russian candidate for ITU secretary general.

The .ru registry was not the only ccTLD operator to slash funding in FY23.

Belgium already said it would cut its donation from $75,000 to $25,000 in protest at “mission creep” and perceived failures to deal with privacy regulations, and the annual report shows it made good on its threat.

But it seems to have been joined by the Netherlands and Denmark, which cut their contributions respectively by $45,000 to $180,000 and by $30,800 to $30,000. Slovenia halved its donation to $5,000.

Overall, ccTLD contributions were down $176,535 to $2,214,240.

ICANN’s bean-counters probably won’t be losing any sleep over the decline; the Org’s overall funding was $150 million in the year.

The post Russia cuts off ICANN funding after pro-Ukraine stance first appeared on Domain Incite.

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