Internet governance

Openness: In the activist’s eye

ATHENS, GREECE 31 October 2006 (FD for APCNews)

The twist this IGF is giving to this old debate about ‘openness’ makes it that more relevant since it calls into life a confrontation, not only involving national law, but also market law. This is why corporations like Google have been taken for a ride at the IGF by those arguing that it is unacceptable that this advertisement firm – know for its flagship research engine – started operations in China, where restrictions on free speech are, to say the least, restrictive.

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The internet governance is a process

ATHENS, Greece

"Internet Governance Forum (IGF) is a forum for multi-stakeholder policy dialogue on how the internet is run. It was set up at the end of 2005 by the United Nations Secretary-General following a resolution made by governments at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS).

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Source: APC">IGF is a process," said Natasha Primo during her speech at the opening ceremony of the first (of three) Internet Governance Forum. What she means by this, is that "Athens will not be the a one-time show. The discussions and debates around how the Source: TechSoup Glossary and">internet

is to be governed will continue way beyond and we don't want to have this huge down-time in between the three IGFs," later explained Avri Doria of the civil society Source: Tunis Agenda for the Information Society">internet governance


The IGF is on, does that mean we'll get an "internet as a free-zone"?

ATHENS, Greece

Here I am, sitting in a plenary room at the opening session of the Internet Governance Forum in Athens. This forum was set a couple of months back, in Tunisia, where the second summit on the information society (Source: APC ICT Policy Handbook and APC Annual Report 2005.">WSIS

) was drawing to a close. Some of you might have noted back then that the two main issues discussed in that UN-organised summit were Source: Tunis Agenda for the Information Society">internet governance

and ICTs for development. Well just about eleven months later, what appears to be the legitimate space for continuing the debate on the future of the Source: TechSoup Glossary and">internet

is called the Internet Governance Forum.

IGF... who's saying what

GOA, India

Everyone talks, but no-one listens.... Spam, multilingualism, cybercrime, cybersecurity, "African journalists trained in how to communicate securely online" (APCNews and Toni Eliasz, 30 September 2004), Take Back the Tech! and APC Internet Rights Charter">privacy

and's 21st Century Lexicon and APC Internet Rights Charter. See also the glossary entry on data protection for a gender perspective. ">data protection

, and APC Internet Rights Charter">freedom of expression

, human rights, interconnection .... The Internet is one of the most powerful inventions of the digital age.... Given the huge impact of the Internet on our daily lives, states must remain the ultimate guarantors of our Internet rights and freedoms,... Reporters Without Borders will be at the Internet Governance Forum in Athens to remind participants that free expression must be at the centre .... A long-simmering dispute over whether the U.S. "state" in this glossary). As a general rule, "government" should not be capitalised.

Source: Wikipedia">government

has too much control over the Internet's underpinnings .... Some voices emerging prior to Athens.

Who calls the shots?

GOA, India

Who really controls the Source: TechSoup Glossary and">internet

? Lot of hints, lots of diversity of views... but plenty of smoke screens too. Here's a lecture, taking place today and titled Who's really out to control the internet? UN and USA Governance, If you tune into the Guardian, the story you get is "US loosens grip on running of internet". And here's another version of the truth, coming from The Mercury News which says, Internet governance dispute will last years, official warns. A dispute, is it?

The IGF in figures...

GOA, India

PressZoom which describes itself as the "global news service and press release distribution" network, has these figures about the Internet Governance Forum, which begins in Athens, Greece from October 30. Participants: 1200. Main sessions: eight (focussing on the Internet’s openness, "African journalists trained in how to communicate securely online" (APCNews and Toni Eliasz, 30 September 2004), Take Back the Tech! and APC Internet Rights Charter">security

, diversity and access). Workshops: 30 (held in parallel to the main sessions, focusing on specific issues relevant to Internet Europa glossary">governance


INTERNET GOVERNANCE FORUM: Seminar calls for unity among poor nations

DHAKA, BANGLADESH 18 October 2006 (Bangladesh ICT Policy Monitor Network)

A single country will not be allowed to govern the internet, speakers at a national seminar vowed adding expectation of the poor countries should be addressed in the upcoming Internet Governance Forum (IGF) meet. The seminar took place in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on October 14.

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Reduce the cost of international internet connectivity


In Argentina, internet access averages 13 dollars a month and almost a fifth of the population are online whereas in Sudan internet access costs 160 USD a month and only 9 people in a thousand are online. Africa, the poorest continent in the world, has the highest costs for internet access. In the run-up to the first-ever meeting of the Internet Governance Forum in Athens starting October 30, APC releases a set of recommendations that encourage the IGF to tackle the availability and affordability of the internet in the developing world and especially Africa as a matter of urgency. In pdf.

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Snaking in from under the sea, submarine cable link launched by Bangladesh


Late May 2006 saw Bangladesh launch its first submarine fibre-optic cable in the southern coastal town of Cox’s Bazar. This could allow high-speed telecommunications, but some voices critiqued the delay in making this possible.

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Changing times... but the same mind-set

DHAKA, Bangladesh

Technology is changing. But the mindset stays the same. And so are the laws. Now, you can start working your The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English on">networking

from a single room. You can start small, keep on deploying, moving out from there, and cover an entire country as you encourage the demand to expand. But is there any recognition to this?

Because the technology has changed, it has a huge impact on how investments will be made, and how the people will use


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