i2Coalition as an idea is actually older than five years old. Most people who have followed us for awhile probably know that we were born out of the fight against SOPA and PIPA. That fight pre-dated the group. We actually brought together nearly TWO HUNDRED (!!!) web hosting companies under the moniker “The Save Hosting Coalition.” Truly, our goal was to come together to fight that one all-important issue and then to disband.
David Snead and I were the co-founders of that group, and both of us were against setting up any sort of permanent organization. We didn’t want some group that existed for no reason but to perpetuate its own existence. We assumed there would be other threats like SOPA/PIPA, but that we could similarly organize on an ad-hoc basis.
The companies that build the Internet weren’t so sure. They were excited about the work that we had collectively put into that fight, but moreover, they remained nervous that the battle wasn’t over. They encouraged us to continue the fight. Eventually, we received enough positive reinforcement that we decided to push forward with a full association, dedicated to providing all of the organizations that build the Internet’s infrastructure a singular voice. Five years ago, the first 38 companies responded, and this important chapter of our story began.
Those companies were right. We exist today because we need to. We exist because the fights that brought us together in the first place have not gone away. Unfortunately, we’ve found out just how needed we are. The threats we once faced remain, and the fight is more important than ever.
We now have over 100 member companies, who dedicate member dollars to our organization to support our efforts. Nobody really has a policy budget, especially not the small businesses we work to champion. They join because they see the benefit of what we have built together. Not only is it a great community to connect and do business in, it’s also fighting some pretty important battles right now.
- Right now, Section 230 is under attack, and we are actively working to address SESTA.
- Right now, the open Internet is under attack, and we are fighting to make our voices heard by the FCC on Net Neutrality.
- Right now we are fighting to try to restore some trust in the cloud during FISA Section 702 renewal.
- Right now, we are helping Europe navigate the biggest changes to digital privacy ever, with GDPR.
We are there right now, and we will be there tomorrow. We’ve never been more needed. So we are glad to be here to fight. Thanks to all the members who have supported us over the past five years!
i2Coalition Co-Founder and Executive Director,