At the end of the day, I attended the Dynamic Coalition on Internet Core Values.
The workshop started with a debate on the role and responsibilities of dynamic coalitions. Markus Kummer presented the idea of dynamic coalitions, saying that it emerged out of the discussion held at the beginning of the IGF on whether the forum should become a structured organization or remain a forum of discussion and dialogue. Those in favour of the second idea suggested that there dynamic coalition might be created as results of the discussions. He also pointed out that, while some dynamic coalitions are indeed dynamic, having various activities on a permanent basis, some others only organize an annual meeting, during the IGF. Although some of the coalitions enjoy a sort of institutional support (there are two coalitions whose activities are supported by ITU), most of them are only based on voluntaries and their activities.
The Dynamic Coalition on Internet Rights and Principles was given as an example of a really active coalition. The current activity of the coalition is focused on the elaboration of a charter of internet rights and principles. A first draft version of the charter was presented during this IGF and it is planned that the version 2.0 will be ready for the next IGF.
Since there are several areas of interests that are common for the coalition on Internet core values and the coalition on Internet rights and principles, it was outlined that there is a need to find ways for various coalitions to complement each others.
A very interesting point made during the workshop was that of Peter Dungate Trush, chairman of ICANN’s Board of Directors, who draw attention on the fact that there is too little talk about governance at the IGF.
When the discussion moved to what Internet core values are, several point were made: the core values are represented by the core parts of the Internet, those that, once threatened, threaten the existence of the entire Internet; the core value of the Internet resides in the principle that anybody can do anything on top of the Internet.
But the most interesting part of the discussion was the one on network neutrality. Several young people were present at the debate, and they were asked whether the current controversial debate on network neutrality is important for them. Most of them agreed that this debate is important for them also, especially given the fact that they are active Internet users, and that they want to enjoy the Internet as it is now, free from any constraints and discriminations between various contents and applications existing online. They outlined that they want the Internet to remain a free and open space, and that they want to enjoy the right of choosing the services and applications they want, when they want, without the fear of being monitored or constrained in any way by anyone (governments or network providers). The youngsters however mentioned that they feel that there is confusion when it comes to what network neutrality means, arguing that the term needs a more accurate definition. As a conclusion, they pointed out that that network neutrality is an important principle and that it needs to be preserved.
However, there was also an opposing view from someone saying that the discussion on network makes no sense and arguing that there are the principles of democracy which should also be respected on the Internet, without any further discussion being needed.
Instead of conclusion, I will end my post with the following idea suggested by one of the young persons present at the debate: “We need to create a global identification system, an unique identifier for every Internet user being online. This would help in the fight against cybercrime”. And invite you to comment it…