[discuss] FW: [governance] FW: Towards an Internet Social Forum

michael gurstein gurstein at gmail.com
Mon Jan 26 10:43:10 UTC 2015

Hi Carlos,

I think your question is better addressed to the ISF itself which is, as already noted, only in the process of formulation and development.  My own feelings and opinions in response to your question are probably best left to the upcoming discussion concerning the People's Internet Manifesto to which all those who are in general agreement with the Invitation will be wishing to address their attention in the very near future.


-----Original Message-----
From: Carlos Raúl G. [mailto:crg at isoc-cr.org] 
Sent: Sunday, January 25, 2015 8:27 AM
To: michael gurstein
Cc: <bestbits at lists.bestbits.net>; 1Net Discuss
Subject: Re: [discuss] FW: [governance] FW: Towards an Internet Social Forum

Thank you Mike for the IGF - ISF explanation.

What about the NM São Paulo statement? Valid? Building on it? Or just forgotten?

Carlos Raúl Gutiérrez
+506 8837 7176 (New Number)
Enviado desde mi iPhone

> El ene 25, 2015, a las 9:41 AM, michael gurstein <gurstein at gmail.com> escribió:
> Hi Wolfgang,
> I think that Parminder gave you a quite extensive answer which I won't 
> even attempt to repeat...
> My own (and personal take) is that the ISF will give prominence to 
> issues related to the Internet and social justice, something which has 
> been more or less completely ignored in the context of the IGF and 
> other Internet Governance processes.
> For me, my work in the context of community informatics and my 
> activities in linking the Community Informatics network to the JNC 
> (and in future (I
> expect) to the ISF) is about how the Internet (and ICTs overall) can 
> be used to promote social justice and how various kinds of 
> interventions may be needed to overcome the massive amounts of 
> economic (and thus social) inequalities which are emerging (one can 
> assume causatively) as a more or less direct result of the interventions of the Internet.
> That civil society in Internet Governance has ignored these issues of 
> social justice and has allowed the various processes concerning 
> Internet Governance equally to ignore (including dare I say, allowing 
> for and enabling the high degree of selectivity in the choices of 
> which Human Rights to promote and which to avoid), is to my mind 
> scandalous and a serious dereliction of their responsibilities to the 
> point where it is laughable and a fairly serious category mistake to 
> refer to most of the individuals and groups involved as civil society at all.
> So, to answer your question my own activities in relation to the ISF 
> will be to ensure that questions of social justice and economic and 
> social inequality in the context of the Internet, of Internet 
> governance, and of governance of and with the Internet are front and centre in our discussions.
> Best,
> Mike
> -----Original Message-----
> From: "Kleinwächter, Wolfgang"
> [mailto:wolfgang.kleinwaechter at medienkomm.uni-halle.de]
> Sent: Sunday, January 25, 2015 4:59 AM
> To: governance at lists.igcaucus.org; michael gurstein; 
> governance at lists.igcaucus.org
> Subject: AW: [governance] FW: Towards an Internet Social Forum
> Hi Michael,
> I asked already Parminder how the ISF is linked to the IGF and I did 
> not get an answer. Can you reply?
> Wolfgang
> -----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
> Von: governance-request at lists.igcaucus.org im Auftrag von michael 
> gurstein
> Gesendet: So 25.01.2015 13:19
> An: governance at lists.igcaucus.org
> Betreff: [governance] FW: Towards an Internet Social Forum
> Coverage of the ISF in an Indian daily
> M
> http://www.deccanherald.com/content/455369/towards-democratic-internet
> -gover
> nance.html
> Towards democratic Internet governance
> *    1 min read 
> *     
> Shruthi H M, Bengaluru, Jan 24, 2015, DHNS:
> The Internet might have pervaded the common man's life but its 
> governance still remains in the hands of a few corporate giants. To 
> counter this, civil society organisations propose democratic Internet governance.
> Though Google's Eric Schmidt predicts the "disappearance of Internet 
> into the background", a group of organisations have set out to bring 
> to fore voices that have remained in the background in spite of the 
> Internet's all pervasive nature.As the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2015 
> is in progress in Davos (Jan 21-24), civil society organisations have 
> come together to create a global 'Internet Social Forum' countering 
> the WEF's NETmundial initiative for Internet governance. The 
> organisations aim to create an Internet space governed in public interest.
> Bengaluru-based organisation IT for Change will be an active part of 
> this global forum, along with five other Indian organisations: Society 
> For Knowledge Commons, All India Peoples Science Network, Free 
> Software Movement of India, SLFC.in and Digital Empowrment Foundation.
> The Internet Social Forum will consist of civil society organisations 
> from across the globe who believe that Internet governance should not 
> be limited to the vested interests of corporate giants. Their 
> endeavour is to put in place a "bottom's up" approach, where 
> grassroots groups can have their say in regulating Internet space.
> Civil organisations feel that the WEF's global internet policy making 
> and governance initiative the 'NETmundial', restricts itself to the 
> voices of the global elite. The concept of WEF itself has been 
> countered by the "World Social Forum" and the Internet Social Forum 
> draws inspiration from it. In fact, the "preparatory process" of the 
> forum is likely to be held in March
> 2015 in Tunis, during the World Social Forum meet.
> When one searches for something on the Internet, the most popular 
> links related to the subject appear at the top of the list.
> However, more often links that appear first are not guided by 
> popularity but by the money invested by interested parties to ensure 
> they are displayed on top. In this regard, the Internet Social Forum 
> will fight for "Net neutrality".
> IT For Change Executive Director Parminder Jeet Singh said, "In its 
> current form, internet governance has not yet become a people's 
> movement. The Internet is increasingly controlled by corporates."
> Community owned broadband, data ownership, limits to copyright and 
> including rural communities in the dialogue process are some of the 
> issues that the forum seeks to address.
> Rishab Bailey, Director (legal), Society For Knowledge Commons, added 
> that such an initiative was significant as, at present, a lot of 
> thought is going into setting up institutions for Internet governance. 
> "We have to ensure a representative and democratic Internet 
> governance. Internet is a global construct and it touches all our 
> lives. As of now there are no concrete mechanisms to deal with issues 
> pertaining to Internet governance. We have to make sure that Internet governance is a true bottoms up approach."
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