[discuss] [I-coordination] New: How do we dissect Internet governance?--

Ken Stubbs kstubbs at afilias.info
Sun Jan 5 17:56:23 UTC 2014

Good advice here ..

On 1/5/2014 12:21 PM, Mike Roberts wrote:
> The arrival of each new generation of communications technology 
> enables and expands the power of various social, political and 
> economic interests.  The Internet is just the latest such arrival, 
> although the conjunction of the technology of moving bits with that of 
> stored logic in computers has raised the bar considerably on deus ex 
> machina considerations.  Jousting occurs as these interests attempt to 
> reshape the landscape to fit their diverse visions of a better future.
> The Internet itself is amoral.  It neither advances nor retards human 
> activities except through the actions of its users (including those 
> who use the technology to provide services).  This list seems to be 
> excessively caught up in debate and value judgments over what humans 
> are or are not doing with use of Internet technology.   In the early 
> days of ICANN, we used to refer to this as special interest groups 
> attempting to seize the ICANN agenda for their own purposes, whatever 
> they might be, including those who favor a nihilistic "hands off the 
> Internet" agenda.
> Given the very limited sphere of potential influence of the Brazil 
> meeting on Internet evolution, it might be helpful to focus on a 
> pragmatic assessment of what outcomes of the meeting are feasible and 
> useful and how the list members might advance them, emphasis on 
> feasible and useful.
> - Mike
> On Jan 5, 2014, at 6:15 AM, parminder <parminder at itforchange.net 
> <mailto:parminder at itforchange.net>> wrote:
>> The issue Mike raises goes to the heart of the matter...
>> If the present phase (post-Snowden?) is about some real change in 
>> global Internet governance, then it has to be of coming out of narrow 
>> ideologies that the Internet and Internet governance remain stuck in..
>> After a very good start in the hands of early pioneers  of the 
>> Internet, the original sin of course was committed when the US 
>> establishment characterised the Internet's primary identity  as a 
>> global marketplace, which identity forms the basic philosophy and 
>> rules of its current governance ... This over-rode the primary role 
>> of the Internet in global community building, social mediation, 
>> access to knowledge, p2p production models, and so on, which 
>> certainly was a very political act if shrouded rather well in 
>> 'technical neutrality' and such things.
>> Next layer of political clothing for the Internet came, a few years 
>> later, as a narrow set of negative rights - mostly, just freedom of 
>> expression, no doubt a very important right, but being just one out 
>> of many, and often rather meaningless without the larger set of 
>> rights. This struggle of what makes FoE meaningful was precisely the 
>> struggle that civil society did in the form of communication rights 
>> movement, but all those advances seem to have been simply rolled 
>> back, unfortunately even by much of IG related civil society.
>> Interestingly, the needs for an Internet for global extension of 
>> digital trade, and, through digital networks, other forms of trade, 
>> seemed to share a lot of points with the conception of an Internet 
>> for global freedom of expression, and a very strong alliance of 
>> Internet free trade-ists and free expression-ists got built, which 
>> has its good points, but very huge limitations as well. Snowden 
>> spoiled this party a bit, but the alliance seems rather resilient.... 
>> That is the political reality of the Internet that we have right now.
>> Well, to come back to Mike's point, if we have to make progress, we 
>> have to come out of these safe and comfortable spaces. There is a 
>> huge world out there, and the Internet is simply not serving its 
>> interests in its full potential. In many ways, it can begin to make 
>> things worse for them, unless the interests of disadvantaged people 
>> are specifically recognised and articulated in IG spaces, and also 
>> judged as often being different from those of the dominant classes. 
>> Such an exercise must be the most important thing to do in this 
>> current phase of revisiting Internet governance. In default, it would 
>> just be  a lot of window dressing, which dominant groups are known to 
>> resort to whenever strong challenges to their domination emerge. And 
>> that would be such a waste of everybody's time.
>> parminder
>> On Sunday 05 January 2014 02:39 PM, michael gurstein wrote:
>>> My apologies if this is a bit out of sequence... I'm only now 
>>> getting around to reading the fascinating document that Alejandro 
>>> and George pointed us towards by Baak and Rossini.
>>> And it is excellent and fascinating work. It is quite remarkable I 
>>> think in surfacing the pre-occupations and directions that have 
>>> guided the Internet Governance discussions including those on most 
>>> lists, the IGF and even the academic research.
>>> One can only marvel at the strong measure of coherence and 
>>> convergence that the paper demonstrates so clearly and concisely.
>>> But I must say I'm struck in reading that document by (as Sherlock 
>>> Holmes would say) the dogs that aren't barking.
>>> Where in the collection of themes/principles is there any reference 
>>> to (responding to) the distributional impact of the Internet---in 
>>> terms of wealth, power, position, influence; or where are there 
>>> proposed principles that deal with the increasing 
>>> concentration/centralization of power that is such a characteristic 
>>> of the current Internet and away from what was a fundamental element 
>>> in the design of the Internet its decentralization, distributed 
>>> governance and control migrating to the edges; or (and of course 
>>> most of these documents are pre-Snowden), where is there any 
>>> reference that even hints at the rise of the Surveillance State and 
>>> what if anything that can/should be done about this.
>>> So perhaps the convergence and coherence rather than something to be 
>>> celebrated should be seen as a problem to be addressed.
>>> Is this perhaps a reflection of a false and narrow, even artificial 
>>> consensus, among those proposing IG principles. Moreover is this 
>>> "consensus" something that can truly provide the range of principles 
>>> that would respond to Pres. Rousseff's call to "harness the full 
>>> potential of the Internet" including in ensuring universality, 
>>> diversity, democracy, development and human rights in and through 
>>> the Internet and its governance.
>>> Mike
>>> *From:*i-coordination-bounces at nro.net 
>>> [mailto:i-coordination-bounces at nro.net] *On Behalf Of *George Sadowsky
>>> *Sent:* Wednesday, December 18, 2013 2:25 AM
>>> *To:*Nigel Hickson
>>> *Cc:* I-coordination at nro.net
>>> *Subject:* Re: [I-coordination] New: How do we dissect Internet 
>>> governance? [Was: Europe at a tipping point?]
>>> It really worth looking at the paper that Alejandro suggested:
>>> in 
>>> http://bestbits.net/wp-uploads/2013/10/ChartConceptNote_MB_CR.pdf Jeonghyun 
>>> Baak and Carolina Rossini present a compilation of principles (for 
>>> Internet freedom, mostly). They have also made public tables with a 
>>> detailes, issue-by-issue compilation of statements from a very broad 
>>> set of organizations. Very high quality work.
>>> George
>>> On Dec 17, 2013, at 2:01 PM, Nigel Hickson wrote:
>>> Nick; great idea; we have some from OECD; Council of Europe and 
>>> European Commission. A coordinate input to Brazil would be great!
>>> *From: *Nick Ashton-Hart <nashton at ccianet.org 
>>> <mailto:nashton at ccianet.org>>
>>> *Date: *Tuesday, December 17, 2013 6:45 PM
>>> *To: *William Drake <william.drake at uzh.ch <mailto:william.drake at uzh.ch>>
>>> *Cc: *"I-coordination at nro.net <mailto:I-coordination at nro.net>" 
>>> <i-coordination at nro.net <mailto:i-coordination at nro.net>>
>>> *Subject: *Re: [I-coordination] New: How do we dissect Internet 
>>> governance? [Was: Europe at a tipping point?]
>>> To Bill's point in the first instance it would be useful to identify 
>>> those principles that exist to date and their source and scope. 
>>> Perhaps 1net could host a wiki environment or the like where those 
>>> with knowledge of one or more could get a list together?
>>> On 17 Dec 2013, at 18:34, William Drake <william.drake at uzh.ch 
>>> <mailto:william.drake at uzh.ch>> wrote:
>>> Hi George
>>> On Dec 17, 2013, at 6:24 PM, George Sadowsky 
>>> <george.sadowsky at gmail.com <mailto:george.sadowsky at gmail.com>> wrote:
>>> Bill,
>>> You say: "Do we really have nothing more important to be doing here 
>>> at this point than redefining the wheel as just a round thingy?  I 
>>> thought this list was supposed to be for coordination 
>>> of multistakeholder dialogue on Sao Paulo and beyond, but it seems 
>>> to alternate between being a troll paradise and the site of a lot of 
>>> meandering debates on points that are generally being addressed more 
>>> systematically elsewhere.  Or am I alone in this perception?"
>>> I agree that we need to address points systematically.  Can you 
>>> provide a list of systematic points (dare we call them issues?) that 
>>> it would, in your view, be useful to discuss?
>>> Well, why not start with the question of principles?  The initiators 
>>> of the SP meeting have been saying from the outset they'd like to 
>>> have a sort of multistakeholder declaration of principles. 
>>>  Presumably it'd be helpful if 1net participants were to provide 
>>> some input on this, and presumably we'd like it to be more than just 
>>> nice fluffy words.  Why not discuss the range of options to make 
>>> this a useful exercise, and see where there's cross-stakeholder 
>>> consensus and where there's not?  It's something concrete that needs 
>>> to be done, and they want input by 1 March.
>>> Cheers
>>> Bill
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> discuss mailing list
>>> discuss at 1net.org
>>> http://1net.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
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