September 29, 2011 - 16:30PM
The following is the output of the real-time captioning taken during the Sixth Meeting of the IGF, in Nairobi, Kenya. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the session, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Hi everyone. Please settle down and we will start in a minute. Okay. Thank you for coming.
Let me take this opportunity to welcome you to the workshop. It's entitled "Youth and the IG. Is the youth factor counting in the IG, and are the IG discussions affecting the youth?"
I'd first like to start by saying two things. First, youth is not forever, so it's -- it's a transitionary period. And I think it's important that when people are young they do something with whatever resources they have.
And then the second thing I'd like to say is that youth do not exist in a vacuum. They exist within the rest of society and within the rest of the age groups. And so I think it's important and in fact we are happy that in this workshop we not only have youth, but all age groups represented.
Next, I'll just go right to introducing the panelists that we have with us today. We are lucky to have five people who will discuss with us some of the issues affecting youth and Internet Governance.
To my extreme right is Raquel Gatto. She is a Brazilian lawyer working at the Brazilian Network Information Center at NIC.br, and she is in the ISOC Brazil chapter. She is an assistant professor, as young as she is, in States theory and political census at the law school, in the PUCSP. She is also an author and a very good speaker. She has been involved in this process since WSIS.
With us again is somebody who is seated at the remote moderators seat, but she is a panel with us. She is Ginger. I'm calling her that because she is my friend on Facebook. Her name is Virginia Paque. She was born in the United States. She has lived in Venezuela for a long time. There she is.
She is an educator and Administrator by profession. And she is the Internet Governance capacity building coordinator for the Diplo Foundation. I'm sure most of you know about the Diplo Foundation causes.
And then next to me is Tim Davies. Tim is the founder and co-director of Practical Participation, a UK based consultancy, specializing in civic engagement, youth participation in collaborative technology.
Other than that, I'd like to mention that Tim is also a member of the Dynamic Coalition on youth in this Internet Governance Forum. And then to my left is Kellye Coleman. She is a young journalist from Imagining the Internet. She participated in the youth panel in the IGF USA. She is very young and quite an excellent woman. She is a blogger, too.
And then next to Kellye is Peter. I cannot pronounce his second name. I think it's Peter Matjasic. But Peter is the President of the European Youth Forum. He has a lot of interest in European politics, world affairs, youth participation, new media, sustainable development, reading, traveling, jogging, tennis, electronic games and so on. So without much further ado, I'll just ask Raquel Gatto to take it up.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Some background. To be chosen as the first speaker, I lost a lunch, because I was organising the workshops, so they decided I should be the one.
So as Tim once said, I'm getting old. We are getting old to talk about youth. But, the spirit keeps the same. And as we approach the 30s, I thought that for those beautiful young and very shining -- they are shining on the sessions that have almost half my age -- what I would bring on is some of the experiences, how I got involved, how I started, and so this is what I would like to share with you today.
First, touching the title of this workshop, I think that what youth can bring and needs to be involved in Internet Governance is to bring their voice. And for that, I address five points that I will go on as I tell the history. This is more history telling, personal history telling, to show you some of the points you can be involved in and Internet Governance can change you.
So when I started with this, it was on our -- I was 19 years old and I was an intern in law school. And I was working with intellectual property. And we had by the time a lot of problems with domain names and trademarks.
So, I started digging in, and I think this is the first point. You need to have the will, you need to be curious to understand. Because I started studying, and I started researching.
After all, who rules the Internet? Because we talk about domain names, we are talking about trademarks, but who makes the rules? Who solves those problems? And then you got the Internet and Internet Governance.
And just after I graduated, I started my master degree on international law, addressing those issues, exactly. Because when I started checking that there were multiple organnisms, there was this principle, multi-stakeholder, but in the international law we learned that the representatives are the governance in the international field. And how come we have several actors discussing, deciding, and for example standards which are decided in IETF, they are made by the community and they are used worldwide. How is that happening? So I started researching about it.
And we had the IGF, the second IGF in 2007 in Brazil. And this is actually my third point -- my second point, sorry, which are local meetings. Because with the preparatory process for the IGF in Brazil, we had some meetings. And I got a small note in an academic newspaper that a prepatory meeting was going to happen, and I went there. And then I met several actors who explained what was IGF and the WSIS process, and I submitted my master degree proposal to a meeting, an academic meeting that happens one day before the IGF, which is gigantic, and I got accepted so I went. And I got involved here and never stopped. I've been at all IGFs. I've been here every year.
So this is important, also, to bring those issues, those debates, to your local community, because this is the way you can also involve youth. It's difficult to bring you all here. I'm sure that from China many more could come and many more would like to come, and this is also a worry. In Brazil I also met the Diplo booth and got involved with Diplo.
So this is my third point. As I was trying to understand this whole -- this big huge word that is Internet Governance, I started digging on capacity building. And I started with Diplo Foundation and this opened up a lot of doors not only broad knowledge, but a huge network.
I think most of us were here, I can tell Grace, Tim, were -- and Ginger who is the coordinator. So I'm aware I have only five minutes and I'm going to shorten this up.
And from the DIPLO community, from interaction with others, we started also being aware or started to debate the concern to bring -- how to bring more people. As I was saying, you can come. What could be done? And we started debating about remote participation. And now there is a remote participation working group which started and pushed with the IGF Secretariat this remote we have today. The hubs model, that can also bring to local communities the content, the debate, and bring their voices in. So I'm not addressing exactly youth, but I'm sure that youth is represented.
We have connected the Syracuse students hub and I'm sure that they are glad to be following and to be learning. And this is the fourth point about eParticipation, about inclusiveness and openness. And I should say, can't help myself, that we had earlier a meeting with eParticipation, with a lot of youth involvement. And I'm sure Tim can also talk more about the youth. We created a document online and many people were making their inputs on time. Just there. People that were in the room, people that were remotely participating. And this is a huge change. I think I've never seen in IGF this kind of collaborative and simultaneous creation of a document.
So, if you want, we are going -- we have some copies, and we are going to also advertise that later.
And the last point is, as I got more involved, as I got more work in NIC.br, the career started to merge more into Internet Governance. It's also important to also have the mentoring. I had this experience, for example, in ICANN. I'm talking about another fora, but it's under the Internet Governance umbrella. Because when you are a newcomer and you arrive at those meetings, and you see so many people, some know each other, they are talking about the issues that you can follow. You need someone to help you understand what they are talking about. We are talking about the Tunis agenda. What is it?
So, this is important also to have this mentoring, this preparation, to be ready, to be safe -- not safe, but secure during your participation.
So I think those were some of the issues I would like to bring on. We talked, some of them on the Youth Dynamic Coalition. I'm sure you were mostly invited to come and to join. The ways we can build on IGF specifically, the Dynamic Coalition, to build tools, capacities, and everything else, you might think it's necessary to get more involved, to get learning and so on.
So I think that was it. I hope it's useful to you and I'll be glad to take questions and help further.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. You're very inspiring. First we will listen to the other speakers. I'll invite Tim Davies and later we will have a session where anybody can ask questions.
>> TIM DAVIES: I didn't realise I was next. So, I'll try and work from the notes I have here. So I think when we talk about youth, we have already been discussing here before this session started that youth is a label that covers a broad range of people. In some countries and contexts it means under 18. In others it is a broader range up to 30 and beyond. So I'd like to be clear talking about children and young people and young adults when I talk about that. Children varies from country to country, up to 13. And 13 to 19, young people. Young adults, those who may be coming here as University students, as young entrepreneurs, as employees of organisations, as members of Civil Society, networks as well, and that can be people in all those categories. So we have to be clear about young people and young adults when we discuss the youth factor.
And we also have to recognize, to complexify that further, that youth have many different identities. I'm a young person or a young adult who runs a business, who is involved in Civil Society networks, who has a particular identity, particular national identity, particular political views and ideologies. And there is as much diversity within youth as there is between youth and other actors.
So, again, we have to be critical about what is the youth factor. But when we talk about young people and young adults, I want to focus on particularly children and young people and Internet Governance.
I started out my engagement as a 16 year old in children's rights campaigning. And I think actually what we have got good at at the IGF is hearing from young people and young adults. We are still not listening to children's voices enough. And I think for both young people and children, there are a number of key challenges. There is structural disadvantage in the way these processes are set up. There is less time on how to become equipped to speak up.
Coming to IG for the first time, it was two or three years before she felt comfortable to speak up in panels. And so for young people who are moving through the age categories, whose lives are going through transitions from school to University to jobs to voluntary work to other work, having the chance and the time to consistently engage with these issues is a structural disadvantage that we need to address with structural solutions. We need to recognize that there are fewer resources to financially support young people to take part. People may be giving up their working income to come and attend, not being funded by their workplaces, so we have to look at some of the structural issues.
But I also think more challenge is the internalized discrimination that we still have towards children and young people, and we have to constantly challenge ourselves on that. Adam Fletcher, who writes a U.S. Blog, the free child talks about adultism as a form of discrimination, as serious as sexism and racism. And I certainly do hear comments throughout IGF that there are adultists that are portraying a discrimination towards young people as young people. So we have to really challenge ourselves.
I believe children have a right to be listened to. I believe that it's engraiined in the UN Convention on the Rights of Children. A right to be listened to in every decision that affects them and that creates an obligation to listen and listen deeply, suspending my own interpretations of what I think they are saying and listening to what is being said and actually taking that forward.
So, I believe children and young people of all ages can express their views on the issues that affect them. And the Internet as we heard is an issue that affects them in many, many contexts. So I might not expect a six-year-old to tell me the policy details and institutions I should go to to solve a problem, and I don't expect most 60-year-olds to do that either. But I do know that a six- or seven-year-old can tell me what they enjoy online and what they don't enjoy online. And I know that I should be open to hearing ideas from them that cut through the organizational nonsense, the political blockages, the individual ambition that many people are not going to the best ideas in these solutions. And we should be open to hearing ideas from children and young people that actually give us real insight into how to solve IG problems.
So it's a youth factor counting in Internet Governance? Well, I think we have still got a long journey in society generally to making sure that we end discrimination against children and young people, challenging structural and attitudinal barriers.
But, yes, the youth factor counts. Youth is a foundational part of discussions of social issues here in Internet Governance. So we have not only got a big challenge, it's a vital challenge to engage with and build on. And I think amazing progress has been made over the last five or six years since the WSIS process onwards. But we are contending constantly with the structural challenges. We are getting older and we have to fight for the resources to participate. And there are many other things going in their lives, so we have to keep working hard on it.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thanks, Tim. I'm glad you answered the question whether the youth factor is guaranteed. I hope that later you tell us ways in which we could make the youth factor count more.
But right know, let me just invite Kellye to make a presentation.
>> KELLYE COLEMAN: Hello everyone.
So I have notes, it's going to sound very wordy rather than kind of free and open, but that's just how I have to operate.
One thing I'll say, though, is that it's been really amazing to be here and see just how much youth from East Africa are invested in the future of the Internet. It's inspiring and I feel it's such a clear representation of how important it is to young people. It's inspiring. It means connection to the world. Opportunities to learn and grow and it means opportunity for creativity, expression and innovation.
We understand this -- "we" as in youth. I'll say that this is coming from my own perspective as a young person from the United States. But we understand this and we understand technology. We understand how it works. We adopt the newest technology, and as they come we interact with them.
But I understand that we need to worry about those who take advantage of the Internet, which is to be expected. We need to consider ways to regulate maybe and legislate maybe. But here at IGF, youth and protecting them, thinking about the way we use the Internet has been discussed a lot.
But youth themselves don't know what is being discussed about them here. In fact, I would say that many of us as young people know little about most of the issues being discussed here today and this week.
Why is that? I'm currently enrolled in a course called "the future of the Internet," where I'm learning about privacy, policies related to the Internet, issues that are hugely important to me as a user of the Internet. And I'll tell you it's a bit frustrating to me that I'm just now learning this. As a young person, I feel that I've been kind of left out in some ways. I've been excluded from knowing about the important issues, particularly related to policy. I didn't even know that the -- know that these things were in existence, if that makes sense.
So, personally, I believe that before we begin creating more legislation, let's take a moment to educate our young people and then include young people, the technology users, in the policy process.
And, you know, I talked a lot about educating young people at this -- in the panels that I sat on so far this week. And so those who have been present have heard me say this a lot, and I'll continue to do so. Because I feel that we as young people are pegged as lazy and uninterested. Is it true? No. Maybe that's just my opinion. But I also believe that we just don't know. That's how I feel. I feel that there are so many things discussed at this conference that I didn't even know about before I started taking this course and now that I know, oh, my gosh, am I interested. Oh, my gosh, do I want to be invested.
There are many things that I've been learning in my course, I said this but I'll say it again, because it goes with my script. There are many things I've been learning from my course that I really care about. But if I hadn't randomly selected to participate in this class, there is no way I could care about it, because I didn't know.
And you know those who heard -- as a young person, I feel that my peers in a lot of ways are being deprived from knowing about the policies that are being discussed that can impact them in incredible ways as Internet users. But we as young people who utilize the newest technologies as they come, we know about that. we should be included in discussing with policymakers.
Also, I feel that if more people were educated, perhaps more would be present at these types of functions, participating more openly. So for me, it's not necessarily about legislating or regulating. I think the big thing for me is education. A two-way street. Educating young technology issues, issues that we are talking about this week, but also involving young people to share with policymakers about their sort of opinions on the way that they will be impacted.
So I was asked to kind of come here today and contribute, you know, my opinion about the policies that I believe should be in place so as to not stifle innovation and create creativity for youth in the years to come. But to me the education is one of the first big steps in that.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you, Kellye. So far in the panel, the point that is being reiterated is about capacity building and mentorship. That as we move to the future of Internet Governance, there is a need to fill in the gap. Because there are people who, so to speak, are retiring from their post and the other people are willing to take up that post. But some proactive approaches need to be taken so that we can have a better future.
Next I'll invite Peter Matjasic, who is the President of the European Youth Forum.
>> PETER MATJASIC: Thank you very much, Grace. And I feel uncomfortable when you continue pointing out my function because if the IGF, the beauty of the IGF is that it's a multi-stakeholder process. It doesn't matter who you are, who you are representing, but what you say about things. So I'll try to bring in a bit of a different perspective into this, the perspective from a youth organisation that tries to focus on how we could actually ensure continuity and accessibility in something that we're doing.
We as an advocacy platform do that constantly on several areas, but new media as a topic is relatively new for us. And there -- it's many ways, like Kellye was mentioning, you don't simply know about it. Yet. You are not informed sufficiently about it yet, and that is what is happening to our members a bit.
Our member organisations are still stuck in the basic question of Internet Governance. Is it more than just a communication tool? New media? So that is what we're trying to do within our forum at the moment. Because we have been taking part in IGFs, we have taking part in Eurodig. We have sent individuals to the meetings, and youth representatives to the meetings. They have come and gone and given feedback, but there was a lack of sustainability of that. So we're trying to approach that exact question. I think it's something that is crucial for the IGF as a whole in the next five years.
So, first, if I look at the question about does IGF impact on youth? Absolutely. In many ways. The nature of the multi-stakeholder approach that offers a possibility both for individual young people to speak up and be present, and we have seen this all over this IGF, at least from my perspective, the great kids that I -- and I say "Kids" because they are, in comparison to me, kids who are brilliant in putting forward their own ideas and their own perceptions. But what is also important is to bring in youth organisations to take part in this and have their voice heard.
I think it's crucial to raise the voice of youth as a whole in the IGF but also to assure the sustainability of the youth, to start asking questions about youth participation. And there is a role to play with the Dynamic Youth Coalition that we have and a space where we can start tackling that question.
I can speak as Peter who is interested in new media. That is just one voice. If I do speak on behalf of tens of people in Europe, they might not know that I can speak on their behalf. I'm speaking on behalf the young British citizens because the British Youth Council is our member.
That's the problem we have in Democratic democracy. Obama may speak on behalf of all Americans, but not everybody knows or agrees to that. So I want to bring that forward as the important thing to consider. The biggest impact that IGF and EuroDIG had for us as an organisation and our representatives was raising awareness about the topics that are out there. By participating, we suddenly noticed there are so many things that we feel provoked by, that we feel touched by, that we are the users of the Internet and we do have a say and we want to get involved.
So it was a bit of -- usually we always try out when we want to say something and we have things to say. This time it was more about we were put in a process and then we saw that actually, wow, this touches us directly and we need to have a say on this. And then we're trying to find a way how to raise our voice and what that voice should be.
And one such area is eParticipation. We have been advocating a lot in Europe to make sure that Internet Governance focuses on providing the possibility for participation to young people as this has been proven to be an approach to participation in decision-making as such. But eParticipation can only be effective if it's accompanied by offline participation. And there we want to pair it with the work of youth organisations done underground. If we want to educate, inform, raise awareness, this needs to be a constant process and we have channels, peer-to-peer channels, in youth organisations.
Of course there are others and every individual here can go online and raise awareness about these things to his or her colleagues and friend. But the youth organisations have already those channels existing, and they can use them.
What have we learned so far? I think that we have learned that the biggest problem is to ensure a meaningful participation of young people in the IGF and similar forums, not to showcase young people, but to really make sure that what they are saying is coming either from their personal experience, that is valid in itself, or it's coming from a process that has been debated and are then speaking on behalf of their colleagues, be it from a school or be it in a youth organisation. But of course this is linked to certain barriers. Tim mentioned structural barriers in bringing people here and bringing them here physically. But it's important that we have a lack of information and knowledge which is linked to digital literacy or lack of it in terms of being able to participate remotely.
We don't necessarily know it or we don't know how to use it or when to access it. Or I have to admit that when I lost you, when I first heard about IGF and I was encouraged to be part of a hub and these things, it was like I don't understand what you're saying. How does that work? I was feeling that -- well, I'll just leave it because I have so many other things at the same time. So we have to address that, how we can overcome those things.
Then I think something that was mentioned in the previous panel over again was that we shouldn't treat Internet issues as youth issues. But we have to treat these issues as issues on which children and young adults can and should have a say on. So to bring in their perspective of these topics.
And then lastly, what I think should be improved in the near future or could be improved, as has been mentioned, capacity and competence building of youth representatives, especially with the necessary preparatory meetings. This is something that we have done in Europe thanks to the member organisation who took it up for themselves to find the funding and then to create the space, even sometimes elbow their way through the EuroDIG. And Ginger remembers that. But in order to create spaces to raise your voice.
And then to better support the participation of youth in the different IGF and encourage and support long-term involvement of youth as a stakeholder. And I think we should look into how we further develop the youth. This is one option that came out this morning: Do we want to focus as everyone involved in that DC on youth? And one particular topic that we say this is important for us for next year's IGF. We will have a say on other things, but is it one topic that we want to push and create a network of young people and representatives around the world who should focus on that? Or simply by better coordinating ourselves and working throughout the year. Thanks.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you, Mr. President. I also get that there is an AGF culture that has a language, that has ways of doing things, and the youth can also land this language and they can also engage. Because this is our future, the Internet is our future, and we have the biggest stake in the future.
Next I'll invite Ginger, who has been in this process for a long time and who has observed a lot and I'm sure she has a lot to advise as well.
>> GINGER PAQUE: I don't know that I have a lot to advise you on, but I can talk. I would like to mention -- I think -- has everyone here heard the term "Digital divide?" It's a way tech can divide civilizations and groups of people as well as bring them together. I would think that one thing that is really cool about the Internet is that it has helped us to minimize the age divide. Because I -- I have to admit, I identified with Raquel Gatto, with every single speaker when they came out. The reason I got started in IG is that I was a member of the United Nations Association of Venezuela as a human rights defender. They needed a translator. I speak English as well as Spanish. I work in Venezuela. So, I started getting these documents on WSIS, for the World Summit Information Society, and translating them, because Venezuela was a member of the task force on WSIS.
So my only qualification to get involved in Internet governance was that I spoke English. So, if Kellye says she was like I don't even know what it is, and I didn't have a clue, that is how I got involved with Diplo foundation. It was because I was on a task force in the World Summit for the Information Society and I didn't have a clue what it was.
I happened to see a call for applications for Diplo Foundation, and believe me, I wasn't in the age group. I was born in the U.S. I didn't have any of the qualifications, but I told them you guys have to help me. And Diplo Foundation did let me in and I took the course and I have a better idea of what I'm talking about.
But it's not that much different from any one of you who step in. I didn't have a clue when I started. As Tim said, it took me years before I would really stand up and talk. But I did find that the people who had been around longer, if you stop them in the corridor and ask them, they will help you. Now, when I say that the Internet is a great equalizer for age, okay, so it does have a weakness. It does mean that older people can stalk and chat rooms and things, but it also means that older people can get online and be involved. It means that you can get online without any prejudice, because when you make a statement or send an input to the IGF Secretariat, nobody knows how old you are.
Now, I could say as a matter of fact if you're wondering what I'm doing on this panel, I do think that I am younger than anyone in this room. Why? Because I have been young for longer than any of you.
So yes, I may be four times as old as you, but I am younger.
I do think we have to realise that young issues affect all of us. You in particular are facing them. I can definitely understand the financing issue. If youth are not taken seriously and don't get involved, how can you learn? But, remote participation is an option that many of us -- I live in Venezuela. Getting here was not easy and was not cheap. It gives us the option and the realization that the IGF does not take place four-days a year. The IGF takes place 365 days a year. And very, very many of us tend to think oh, yes, the IGF is coming up. Yes, it's coming up.
If you did not in January write your input to the Secretariat, and then you complain that you didn't have a voice in setting the agenda, give me a break.
They ask constantly for input. That input is only done by eParticipation. It is only done by e-mail. It is then collected in an open consultation in Geneva, unfortunately, but Geneva also has eParticipation. And if you -- and I know this because I have done it myself -- I was not happy with the collaboration and the consensus document. As you know, by the time we get to consensus, things get watered down. I wasn't happy with the statement the Internet Governance caucus came up with. And by the way, the Internet Governance caucus has no age limits. You are invited. The Internet Governance caucus is an online mailing list where we discuss Civil Society Internet Governance issues. It's free and open. You don't have to know anybody to get in to sign up. And you're on, and send in and ask your question, make your it statements and make your points. I think many of many of you are on it and share the link.
I was not happy with the consensus statement. So I sat down and wrote my own statement in much stronger terms. And if you read the input, the executives summary, my statements are in there. And I'm an individual. You can do as much as you want to do. As much as you put into it, if you are willing to sit down and do the work. So through the Internet Governance caucus, through the e-mail, through answering all the requests for comments, you do have a voice. And we, as I say, we can't wait for everyone to put remote participation there for us if we don't get out there and participate.
So, I don't know if any of that made any sense. But just some random thoughts that might bring us forward.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you for the challenge. I hope for the next year we will have more people in this room participating. As a representative of people in this workshop, we were hoping to hear something from the group, from -- okay. Go right ahead.
>> Lovely. I wanted to speak a bit about some of the practical challenges of bringing young people to the IGF, if that is all right. And I'm heading up the IGF project. And we brought our eight young people who you have all seen. And I just wanted to talk about some of the background to it. Because we hear a lot. It's great for young people to be involved. But the reality of the situation for us is that young people in the UK are in schools most of the time of the year. This is our day job. We talk about Internet Governance and Internet issues all the time. So we're very familiar with the language. We talked a lot about how young people are using the technologies and are very familiar with it. But I still think from my experience with them them --
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: For the sake of captioning, please speak slower, and this goes to everybody.
>> From our experience, the language isn't the language that the young people are using. They are very familiar and comfortable with the technologies, but it's still a technical and prescriptive language and there is a lot of jargon. So we invested a huge amount of time in our eight young people.
We hold a youth camp to talk about Internet Governance and to familiarize them with the issues that they are going to be involved in. We had three day discussions in the summer. There are practical considerations for bringing people to the IGF that I just want to mention.
In addition to the time to prepare them, there are also child protection issues if you take young people away from home and away from their parents. There also, you need to bring chaperones, risk assessments. So for the eight young people who are here, they are part of a wider party of 17 who have come to facilitate that. So for us as a charity, that is a huge challenge financially. And we are based in the UK and we have got funding. But I'm sure for other countries, there are great difficulties there. So there has been a significant input in terms of time and travel.
And we have been in three workshops, which is fantastic. But that is just three workshops out of a plethora of many. And it's very difficult for the young people to continue to be in contact during the year, because they have got their schoolwork and things. So we facilitate that as much as we can. They are all fantastic learners, these young people. And in spite of what they picked up, I still think they miss out on the right of context. Because they are not involved in the debates on a daily basis. That is not a criticism. That is just the reality of the situation. A lot of us followed it since WSIS. For some of these guys, it was new this June to talk about. So yes, it's been great to have them here. But I think there are real challenges.
There is opposition at the IGF. This may be controversial. But I think there are some who don't want the status quo challenge or don't want to hear from young people. But I take the point that we have the responsibility to chip into all the consultations and we will do that more this year to try to get young people in the main sessions. Because that's where I really perceive that they have been lacking.
I still think there is a huge way to go. I would like to see young people from every country in every session. I'd like to see them integrated as panelists. I'd like to see them Chairing sessions. And that is something that we will be working toward. But it's been great to hear from the other panelists and we will facilitate new partnerships for next year and that's what we will work for. And we welcome talking to anyone who wants to work with us to help make that happen.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Is there anybody else wanted to make a statement before we go to the question and answer?
Okay. We will start with the lady.
>> TITI: The name is Titi. And I must confess, even though I'm officially according to the United Nations, the African union particularly, I'm still classified as young, but I was hesitant to show up at this session and I'll tell you why. How many people are aware that there was a WSIS youth or a WSIS youth caucus?
(Showing of hand)
Anybody on that side?
Okay. So when I walked in, I won the battle with myself and I ended up in the room. Because again I'm passionate about anything young. When I walked into the room I said to myself, I failed. And I'll tell you why.
There were two phases of the WSIS. And in each phase it took us a long time. Eventually it was two, in 2001, when the WSIS youth caucus was recognized when we went beyond the face that we are in and we moved to the level where we were recognized. And we got a sentence into the declaration. That was a great achievement.
Why, I said, that I personally think I failed is that if it comes to the IGF, and the same challenges are being faced, then it means that somewhere along the line as the person who was the last global youth caucus facilitator, enough was not done to pass on the Baton. Not that it wasn't attempted.
And the issue around you being -- you are very correct. There is a huge, huge resistance about having youth issues in the IGF right now. It wasn't that there wasn't an attempt to continue the process, but the challenges that you mention are from finance to having people not necessarily being interested in having young people on panels or not thinking that we have anything great to say because we wouldn't say the jargon or say it with too much passion, and we cross the boundaries. But it came to the point where it became more of a distractive issue, rather than contributing to the process. And this is what I have found useful.
I took a step back and so did a couple of the other people who were with the WSIS youth caucus, and we reorientated ourselves. We don't want to be pigeonholed by age. In the present century my age does not define my level of knowledge or how much intellect I have or the level of understanding that I have of the issues. Absolutely not.
So inasmuch as you understand why I had a bit of a fight with myself, inasmuch as it is great to be able to have a coalition on youth, I think it's very important. You need to be able to retreat, to come forward and to engage. I think it's more important to take the discussion forward where we can integrate, we can actually engage with the processes, on the issue of spectrum that is going on in the workshop next to us. Being able to engage on critical Internet resources in a language that will astound them. And when we take it or not, that takes a bit more training.
So encourage those coming behind. I don't think we failed, but we need to connect the dots and I'm willing and available to help you in any way to be able to leverage some of those relationships, taking it forward in terms of future Internet Governance Forums.
One of the most important things we have to do at this point is if you are going to engage in the Internet Governance Forum, as young people, yes, you have studies. Yes, you probably have minute day jobs somewhere, yes, there will be financial challenges, but you have to have passion for it. You have to have passion for it. And that passion is what is going to drive you.
Ten years on, I can tell you that this afternoon I was in the WSIS youth caucus. How old are you? Even -- I'm over 30. Do you understand? So at the end of the day you will have other commitments, but this is the encouragement I want to hand out to as many of you that are feeling a bit overwhelmed and unappreciated, because I stood in your shoes. Your passion will make a way for you. As much as they don't want to acknowledge the fact that youth is important, well, we will keep the discussion and debate open. So yes, a lot of encouragement.
I saw the much younger ones; I think we getter by the year. I think we are on the right track but there is so much more that we can do if you engage more with the issues, directly, concrete issues, and not necessarily keep to yourself. If you look around the room, you know, it's not representative.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. Okay.
At this point I'll ask anybody else making a contribution to please take consideration of the time, because there are a lot of people. So we will have him and then Ali and then we will come to you.
>> PETER DALAY: I appreciate you giving me this. I'm Peter Delay from Nigeria. I just want to say that youth has to be given the time in this IGF. I want to see more African children and young people coming forward to IGF and to WSIS also to play a critical role. Because we find it find out that most people in Nigeria, they are passionate, and there are counterparts in other continents who are far, far, far ahead of them. So in order to catch up with one another, in order to have this petition of IGF and WSIS process, we need to bring all stakeholders, children and young people from Africa, from Europe, together, so as to find a common solution to this.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you.
>> I'll make sure I keep it short. If you have any questions about anything I said, I encourage you to talk to me after or tomorrow.
I think ways that we can engage more are making sure that people here coming are multiple kinds of youth. Both the consumer youth and the people creating the Internet. And that also will help them when they want to engage in these concrete issues. Because they will also understand them and they will also understand when someone is talking about something that they are interested in. So they can bud in confidently. And hopefully when we educate youth to prepare them to come, they can focus on a particular issue and be experts in that, instead of knowing a bit about everything. So they go to particular kinds of workshops and they can engage with quality input that will give us credibility.
And I think -- I think we have done a great job of getting youth here. I understand it's insanely difficult. But I think those are just my comments going forward.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you.
>> MIKLA DOUGLAS: I'm Mikla Douglas with ChildNet. This is my first week -- first ever time at IGF. Just one or two times this week I got the impression that young people being here is a bit of a novelty to some people. That what we're saying is only interesting because we're young people. But it was a lot of what Titi said. I want to be listened to on these issues as a person in general, regardless of my age. And I may bring a fresh perspective to things because of my age, but you know not all of what I'm saying is, you know, is new. It's stuff that has been said already and I just want to enforce it. Yeah.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you.
Just before we go to the next round of questions, let's hear from the remote participants.
>> To kick start the Q and A, we have a question from students at the Syracuse University New York. And the question is very pertinent to what has already been discussed. How is the IGF raising awareness of the forum to the youth? Personally, I don't think IGF is raising the awareness because there is very little participation under the youth.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Comments from the panel?
>> GINGER PAQUE: You'll have to forgive me for not speaking from a youth perspective. I would say that this problem exists in general. Not even my family can understand what I'm doing here in Kenya. So it's not a matter of the IGF projecting to youth what is IG, what is the IGF and what is going on here, it's projecting it to the world and making the world interested in what IG is and how important Internet Governance is to each and every one of us. So I would say everyone young, medium or middle aged or old, we need to go out and tell our friends and our families so that they understand that it is not a matter of telling youth about the IGF, it's telling the world.
>> PETER MATJASIC: I just wanted to follow up on that. The criticism is correct but misplaced in who it targets. It's not target the IGF. It's just a forum. It doesn't exist as a person. It exists as the stakeholders present. This is what we talked about in the beginning. You have to bring it back home. You have to make sure that you as a stakeholder go back and inform your colleagues, your organisation, whoever you represent. If it's you yourself, you go back and discuss it with your friends to raise awareness of it. It's not the IGF. Because as such it doesn't exist. It's just a collective of us.
>> TIM DAVIES: I think there are practical things that the IGF can do. We believe in the power of online information, yet the IGF Web presence is poor. It's hard to find out what is going on. It's hard to find the workshop reports from last year so that you can you can turn up well informed. It's not good data on what is happening when.
I challenge anyone who is involved as donors to invest and improve that online presence so we can make the IGF more inclusive. And to do that in a way that takes on user-centered design, that explains things clearly and accessibly and tests with people around the world do they understand. So I think we need a big investment in that digital infrastructure.
And I think of all that support, the knowledge sharing over the years, certainly with the youth coalition, we set up YCIG.org and a mailing list, and I invite anyone who was involved in the past to please join that and throw in your comments. But it would be great if the IGF was supporting that more, because we have had issues with who is paying the server, because it's going down. And the simple things make a difference.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: It appears impossible, but I agree with both. And I think there are ways to have both ideas put together. For it should be, yes, something into IGF but not only from IGF's Secretariat. If you don't have the users, if you don't have have the youth, if you don't have the human resource to build on that, and I'm also addressing one of the points -- sorry. I lost your name, but from the WSIS caucus. Because -- again, bringing the experience from the remote participation in IGF Brazil, there was a huge resistance. Remote participation was cancelled on the day before the IGF started because there were not enough procedures. And little by little, a small group -- and I say small group, it was five or six people, Ginger, me, Maria, Rafik, Sharek -- I can name them who started building this model, who started saying no, this is important. This can't go on.
And year by year we learned something. We went one step further. We had small, small steps. One time we had the chat, the future, the interaction. One other year we had the remote moderator. One other year we had the captioning. This is from last year in all sessions. So, each year we go step by step. We don't have to do it all. And this is something we could build on, thinking about concrete steps. If you think about the youth coalition, it is into IGF, we just need to push that.
We could have, for example, for the opening consultations, you would work with the IGF local meetings, what you call hubs, so you don't get lost, Mr. President. Those are just local meetings.
And to get online, the open consultations and to get your voice there. I've particularly -- I've been only in one open consultation, and because I was on holidays and next to the Geneva, but I -- I've been all the time online, participating. And even if the platform they offered doesn't work, I use Ginger or someone else who is there and talk through Skype. So creating the network is also important.
And also I'm thinking last year, I think it was mentioned during the closing remarks, but to maybe have a younger representative on each panel. I don't remember exactly where it was addressed, but I thought it was a good idea. So for that, in each panel, in each main session, you could have a youth representative. But for that you need to have a resource list. And this only can be done by us. So let's not just push to the other side, but let's bring to us what can we do?
So which are our strength areas? As I said, I came up with this intellectual property background and maybe I feel more comfortable in that, oh, or those kids, they are not kids anymore. They are here. They are speaking out. But what is their interest? Can they share or divide into small groups and create -- well, I like more this kind of child protection. I like more of the mechanisms of Internet Governance.
So I was trying just to wrap up what Tim and Mr. President, I don't know your name, I forgot. So what they addressed and hope it's useful to bring concrete ideas to this workshop.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. So the youth, we have to remember, are also a strength and we are resourcing ourselves. He has a burning question and then we will hear from her.
>> Thanks very much. I would just like to share my opinion on why youth is so important. I would just say this in two brief reasons. I'm Conodove from ChildNet. I'll do two brief reasons.
Firstly, as youth, we are the future. And if we get an understanding of the Internet and the kind of problems we have and the solutions we can get, at an early stage, that when we grow up and we become or go into government or whatever we do, we can take these ideas and push them forward. For example, I was in a workshop for access and diversity. And they were talking about instead of having features for helping disabled people fix them, build them into new software. So if we learn about that now, we can do that as we're designing them.
And, secondly, I would just like to say that as older generations, you can use us and use our fresh ideas to improve the Internet that you use now and you can use older ideas and just bundle it into one and fix all the things, all our ideas into that one Internet.
>> SABRINI: Sabrini from the Council of Europe. Just personal views that I felt like sharing. I attended a related workshop before, which was entitled "challenging myths about young people on the Internet." Maybe I'll make enemies here, but I feel like challenging myths about adults. I think that I've heard things about adults' reluctance to involve children and young people. I disagree with that. I mean, not all adults are like that. As Mrs. Ginger was saying in her own particular way, adults are also younger, they are young people who have been young for a longer time and can keep the spirit. People can be also like myself, former youth activists, so they know exactly what you're talking about. They were just in your place just a few years ago.
But the challenge is that they don't necessarily know how to go around with that. Because as one of the young participants said earlier, we're on a learning curve, and that's true for all of us. It's so true for the IT technologies, it's also true for youth participation and how to make it meaningful. So I'd just like to convince you that there is not necessarily always reluctance to that, but maybe a need for guidance from you guys, also.
Also, I've heard that some people or some young people are waiting or expecting to be given a chance to seize it. I mean, you have also -- you want to have an active role, seize it. It starts like that.
And as any citizen, I think that the Internet is very revolutionary in that respect that it broadens, really, for every citizen no matter our age, the scope for participation in democracy and citizenship.
How many of us have been directly consulted by our leaders on legislation? No one. Yet, we have a room for direct participation on regulating the Internet. That's a huge step, in my view.
>> TIM DAVIES: Just a brief response. Absolutely, I think we have to not generalize about adults just as we don't generalize about young people. The key issue is the issue of power. Some people have to support good dialog and better decision-making. And there are other people who have power and they want to hold on to it and they see youth ideas and challenges as a threat. We have to be critical of calling out those people who are trying to hold on to power and challenging it and really working with those who maybe are there to listen to young people. But I do think the structural disadvantage of youth means it's not saying to young people, seize it. We have to create spaces, and offer the opportunities, speak up on people's behalf.
I'm not saying wait for the chance to speak, always speak up when you can. But as moderators or facilitators, we have to be attentive to those who have a hand just halfway up. We have to be aware of the things that young people face.
>> I'm one of the chaperones, and I've taught the other people here, four of them. I just want to say that the question that we're asking this afternoon is the same question that is being asked certainly in British schools and has been asked for the past four years. We have been reluctant to listen to the voice of students partly because, for a long time, we have believed that adults know best. And that is changing. We are now incorporating student voice very much into our interview processes, our decision-making, our school governance, and it is making a tremendous difference. It has taken time, but I would just encourage you to stick with this process. And the important thing is that the young people and the older people I think are beginning to learn that no one is better. Every one has a voice. Everyone has a perspective and has something to say.
And we are developing that culture of respect, where we listen to each other and the young people listen to the older people, we listen to the young people. But we take them seriously and involve them. So I would encourage you to keep going with this whole process.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. The points of accessibility and also the point of involving ourselves in the processes keeps coming back. We have a few minutes left. We are going to take -- okay. Also from the -- but we will take a sort of closing remarks. We will start first with the floor and then anybody who has closing remarks. The interesting thing about this workshop is that nobody's asking questions. Everybody is giving contributions. So we will start with Paul, the remote moderator.
>> PAUL: I'll read comments that I've been receiving. Back to Syracuse University. They are saying that I don't believe that just going back to your colleagues is good enough to attract people to participate in the IGF. I think we should be proactive and actually bringing our peers with us to this remote hub sessions.
And then he goes on -- I mean, the comments go on to state that we think that sending out an e-mail to intellectual institutions to spread the word might help to get more participants. So perhaps maybe some of you may want to react to this.
And Milton Muller, he commended Titi and said that she emphasized that it's issues. Spectrum Internet resources, people need to engage with that, not so much the age group. These are just some of the remote comments.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. First the gentleman from Africa and then the other one.
>> DAVID SADAKA: I don't know how you guessed I was from Africa.
My name is David Sadaka. And I think what -- as a closing comment from my side, why is youth in IG important? Let's not look at Internet as a separate issue from everything else in life. Why is youth in politics important? Making movies or music important? Making books important? If we can answer these question, it's because the youth -- maybe I'm semi youth. We were born or when we were growing up, the Internet was part of the earth, like air or water. So how it's governed, how it's going to be managed, how it's going to grow from now on to the future, you know, it's the same way they are going to tell me how water is going to be governed. How air is going to be governed for the future.
And I would like to have a say, like the gentleman from the UK said. We would like to have a say. Because whatever you teach us now about the environment, once you are in power you're going to enforce that. And whatever we say about IG today, then as we grow and become and take over power more and more, we are going to enforce those things in a better way. Openness, is it security? Is it privacy? And all that. We probably understand it from a more closer perspective.
So, in closing remarks, what I would like this forum to take is that IG is not separate from any other issue affecting everybody enough. We need to take it in that same way.
>> AMIL: Hi. My name is Amil and I'm from Pakistan. I want to make an opening remark for the next year process for IGF and youth. When we talk about that, I think we need to look at two sides of the coin. One side is the inclusion of the youth and the other side is basically the understanding that we have to convey to youth that IG is a process that they need to jump in. While we look at two sides, we need to actually look upon how we can make it more massive, more scalable and more diversified. I see youth from certain parts of different continents. Nobody is from AP here. Nobody is from Latin America as a youth. All right.
Definitely we need to look into the diversity the youth brought in, and that can only be done if you think of inclusion as a whole. And then we also look toward the understanding of the youth towards IG process.
As my friend mentioned here, we don't -- the youth don't understand the lingo that is going on over here. But probably if you can make it easier for them to understand that, we could have more massive participation from the youth. So we need to look at both the sides. Thank you.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. Ginger would first like to address the point raised by Syracuse students and then we will come to you.
>> GINGER PAQUE: Thank you. I do appreciate the fact that the Syracuse students came back to the original question, and I would like to address it.
I understand that the IGF needs to do more, that we each need to do more. But if you think about it, you'll realise that any conference or symposium that is held does advertising -- if I'm going to give a symposium on dentistry, I'll send out information to people who are interested in that. So I have an IGF forum, I'll send the information as widely as I can, but I'm going to target the people who are interested in Internet issues and Internet Governance. So if I'm interested in underwater basket weaving, I have to go out and look for information about underwater basket weaving, and I have to find out where it is.
I would also say that Syracuse University is a mover and shaker in the world of Internet Governance. And I suggest that the students take a little bit of responsibility there to find out what their University is offering, get very involved.
They have Milton, for God sake!
Take advantage of the -- yes, giganet. Syracuse is one of the most important places in the U.S. For Internet Governance. So I commend you on the concern and ask you to please help us spread the world. Go home, bring your -- as they said, bring your friend in.
One way of doing this is capacity building and the Internet Governance secretariat and everyone involved has made a strong point that capacity building is important.
I invite you to visit the Diplo booth. We have a pen drive that is available with the text illustrations, short videos. There is a lot of information available. Stop down at our booth and then we can talk more. So I don't monopolize here.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you, Ginger.
>> BECCA: I'm Becca and I'm here with the youth IGF project with ChildNet.
And this is more of an observation that I noticed. In quite a few of the workshops, young people are putting forward ideas that other people don't seem to have noticed. And sometimes I think in some workshops there is too much jargon of being able to put points that would be relevant, but we don't realise that, because we don't understand what is happening. If there is more education of the younger people about the jargon that is being used, we could put more relevant points forward.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: To address the point of jargon, which has come over again and again, as young people we are a resource. For example, in my country, an example is that all the advertisements are now run in Sheng. That is the slang that the youth use. So if we got so involved in the process, we could also change the language, we could change that jargon and make the IGF speak like us, instead of complaining and insisting that it has to be the other way around. So, it's also a challenge to us that however little we know, we have to speak out. And in a few years' time, everybody will be speaking our language. Hopefully.
>> TIM DAVIES: I think one quick response is what can we do after this IGF to collaborate on a glossary, on resources that help other people? As you know, if you're in the early morning flight back, but when you get the chance write up those things and put them online in a Google document, share them with other members of the coalition. Let's build that up, let's translate that, let's make that a useful resource. And maybe we also need to do that for our adult colleagues, to translate some of the things that we might be saying to make them accessible.
>> GINGER PAQUE: You teach me to understand the things that you say in the text messages, I'll teach you the acronyms.
>> MATTHEW: I'm Matthew and I'm here with ChildNet. A follow-on point. Peter said what is so fantastic about the IGF is that it's a multi-stakeholder event where everyone contributes their ideas and there are varied ideas. But what I feel, the youth view is usually the last one to be heard and usually the last one to be thought of. And I think people are shying away. And as much as we are here, and what Nicholas said: We are more of a novelty. We are having our views and we are saying what we want. But people are kind of listening to it, but not quite accepting it. Because it's the most -- not outrageous, but the most awkward view and it's the one that is last considered. So that is just an observation that I had. Thank you.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. Is there somebody who has not spoken? There is Victor and who else? Okay. Your burning question and then we will have Titi. Make it short so we can go to the closing remarks.
>> JACK: I'm Jack. Just reading on what was said earlier, this is my first time at IGF and I just think it's beneficial for the voice of the youth to be presented at the IGF. Because as someone said, we are the ones with the fresh ideas and I feel that we can assist with the development of the Internet. Make it a safer, broader tool for generations to come, so that they can appreciate the positive outlet that the Internet can bring. And I just feel that it's such a great opportunity for youth to have the opportunity to come here and to speak. So, the coalition, the adults that know what they are really talking about and to get into depth with them on the subjects in question.
>> VICTOR KAPPIO: My name is Victor Kappio. What I would like to say is as youth we have a responsibility to ourselves to share the information. Two years ago, I didn't know about the IGF or the IOIG for that matter. But when I got to know about it, I realized that there are so many people who are also interested or would be interested, if they knew that there is something called Internet Governance, because they use the Internet on a daily basis. They have Internet on their phones. And nobody tells them that hey, this Internet is governed by some process, some organisation. There are some meetings.
So I think from today we need, I think, taking from this conference, is that we leave here with a resolve or a resolution to spread the word that actually the Internet is a space which needs to be governed. And as users we have a responsibility and a stake in the management of the Internet and -- or rather its governance.
So let us go out, especially as my friend from Nigeria said, Africans are not involved. You know, go out and share the information. Tell them that hey, this Internet is here and we are the users, and we have a right and we have a stake and so let us take up the challenge. Let us not leave it to people who are older.
And also just adding up lastly is that we need to work together with those called adults, so that there is a proper transition, that we don't have people who once they leave the process that now you're not youth, now they are discussing other things. Let us talk to them, not talk at, so that it's a more inclusive process and there is proper transitioning.
And let us also remain young. Because we need to take care of sustainable development and it involves the lives of the current generations and also the future generations. So if we keep on and spread the word, share the information and talk to each other, I think the Internet will be a better place.
>> TITI: I promise to keep it short this time. So, quickly, I believe in leaving any kind of panel, particularly when they are like this, with quick things. One thing that helped in the past is not waiting. But showing a can do attitude. There is a problem with the Web site. It's something that we can fix. Half of the time we fiddle around online anyway. What can we do to help the IGF Web site look better and make it more interesting. Particularly for our generation, that's a quick win.
Second thing is if there was a party, you know how we announce parties on Facebook? And you expect 50 people and you get 5,000? Okay. So let's spread the word. This is -- these are things that we can do immediately.
It's not as easy, I for one know that the Secretariat currently is one person.
One person. The IGF Secretariat is technically one person right now. So what can we do? There is going to be the advisory group meetings and the open consultations next year. What can we push? How can we use social media to take it forward? That is the quick win.
The third thing is identify the theme. There are five themes in the IGF. Identify the one that you have a interest in or a subset and then get down to knowing everything there is to know about it. Like you said, I was going to mention what had been said earlier, that one of the first things we had to do before the first WSIS was we took all the jargon, everything we couldn't understand, we took it and reinterpreted it and published a booklet, "understanding the WSIS process." This is how you lobby, this is how you do interventions, making it understandable for us.
More of the adults used it more than we did, we found at the end of the day.
Those are quick wins and they are not resource intensive. Let's leverage Ginger and Diplo.
>> PAUL: It's just a question that John Paul wanted to share. And I'll just read it quickly for you. He is saying that we have spoken about the impact of capacity building programmes in IG on youth participation. During the first five-year mandate, the Secretariat and other organisations conducted various capacity building programmes that targeted youth from developing countries. What did the programme have on developing nations? I wanted to answer this at this time.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Somebody will take it from the panel. Ali, really short.
>> ALI: This is a problem with bringing kids here because of money. If we could get other stakeholders to bring kids, I'm here from the private sector. The private sector has a ton of money. Why not get the government to bring people and why not get Syracuse to bring people? All of these places have a ton of money that might help.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Syracuse and among other people.
Okay. Now we will have the parting shot from the panelists.
I hope in the parting shot they can address the main question of the workshop: Is the youth factor counting in Internet Governance and is Internet Governance affecting the youth?
We will start with Kellye.
>> KELLYE COLEMAN: Okay. I think my one comment kind of from leaving here today and after this spirited discussion is I hope that we're all going to leave with concrete steps in mind. You know, I feel like we talked about a lot of really big and broad sorts of things. And so maybe it's an opportunity for us to think individually about steps that we can take to involve more youth, to change the culture, if that is an issue, or to think about the things that we have talked about. And take those steps individually to try to make changes in that way.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you. I hope somebody in the panel will also address the question from John Paul. Okay. Tim?
>> TIM DAVIES: So simple answer yes and yes. But there is a lot more to do. The follow-up matters, as Kellye said.
Last year on my flight back from the IGF I started writing notes that became a submission that I put into the open consultations. It was text that made it into the final statement. At some point in the last year, I put a Google document online and proposed a workshop and had others collaborating in that. So three follow-ups. Assist and communicate as soon as you get back. Send a press release to somebody, telling them you've been here. "Young people participating in IGF." We start building an awareness of it.
Submit text to influence the process, whether it's a workshop, draft or sent to the YCIG list and share what you're doing to collaborate. The smallest idea shared through the mailing lists and other spaces helps us build a community who can collaborate on making the youth factor count more in the future IGFs.
>> Certainly not.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Certainly not. Why are we talking about youth here? Just joking.
I'm sure you all agree, it counts. And it's still counting. And I was thinking to close with just a small -- also a small note, a small history. Once -- I teached for the first year in law school. So they are between 17, 18 years old. And once one of the students asked: What changes when you grow up? Do you think different? And I was surprised by the question. After I got overcome, that surprise, I could realise the thinking. Yes, we learn. We change some of the ideas, but the main thinking, the core, doesn't change. What you see today by the time I had 17, 18, to now, is the same. What changes is sometimes, and certainly it's the maturing process, you see some ways to go forward. You change your way to act and maybe you're not so impulsive. Maybe you can see more of the big picture.
But this is the core that you should keep alive in yourselves. Okay? Just don't miss it.
And just to address one of the issues about the, for example, the Web site and what can be done just to also close with a concrete issue, I don't think we can change the IGF Web site because we also need to learn that we are somehow under the UN umbrella. We are not the UN system per se, the core unit in the system, but we need to follow some procedures. That's why we have this badge and we have security and so on.
So, we also need to learn that not everything can be said on the name of UN and so on.
But, we can use the youth Web site. I think Tim worked on that. There is the blog. There is -- so many futures, tools there, that can be used. And it's for you. This is not -- we are thinking about it, the youth coalition, but this is your coalition.
So jump in. If you want to create another space, just do it. If we can help, just say and you've got money that is offered here. Take it.
So, that is my closing. I hope you enjoyed this panel as much as I did.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Mr. President?
>> PETER MATJASIC: Apologies for going in and out; mother nature called. Thank you very much for all the brilliant inputs. It opened my eyes in some aspects that I was not aware of that is a problem for you.
There are two credos that we believe in the European Union. First, young people have to be involved in everything that directly affects them.
Secondly, that -- actually, three. Secondly, I heard again and again young people are the future. We agree but we also disagree. We believe that young people are the present and therefore need to be listened to now. And as such, in order to be listened to, we believe in a simple for, with and by young people. This is very important to us. Because as I was saying in the beginning, this is all great that we come here as individuals. You empower young people coming from schools, elsewhere. They give great input but then they go. They might be a relay and they will link it back home and they will express their opinions and share their experiences, which is of course great.
But the danger is that there is no continuity in that. The danger is that if you create one Web site and another one, another comes with a similar idea that has been explored in the past and didn't work. You're missing opportunity.
So, therefore, you have to synthesize these things and therefore you need to create one sort of structure. It doesn't have to be very heavy, the structure. And I think the youth coalition can work for that purpose. But, for example, in Europe, we have seen that our voices can only be heard if we are strong. We used to have four different platforms at the European level that were claiming to be the voice of young people. We merged them 15 years ago into one.
And now, to counter the colleague from the Council of Europe, we are -- I am asked to and consulted on policy directly. We have structured dialog at you're people level within the EU. We have co-management for young people within the Council of Europe where we are directly asked to contribute. But this contribution needs to be channeled, not in order to be taking into account different positions, but in order to reflect a process, that then the moderator within IGF can say we have a youth representative who speaks on behalf of youth, because he or she speaks on behalf of those who develop the processes. You can have a young person step up and have their views expressed. Great. But you still need to have that, otherwise you risk not being listened to sufficiently and not being heard sufficiently. Therefore, we need to work on ensuring how this can be done.
It's a very long process. We have one example of this in Europe, because our platform is unique at the global level. There are very few of such things. In Africa there is a union, but it's not inclusive. We have to empower young people to participate actively, to improve their own lives by representing them, and advocate for their needs and interests and those of their organisations. And if we can find a similar fora or structure to do the same in Internet Governance, then we are on the right path. But this will take time and effort. But I think we need to have an agreement that this is something that could we useful. And then see who is willing to take up on part of that responsibility. And we have actors who are here at the IGF who have been, in the past, who have the capacity and wish to do so.
So we have to channel it and hopefully next year we will have something in that direction.
>> GINGER PAQUE: You would have thought I had paid John Paul to ask that question, because John Paul knows as well as anyone that capacity building has changed the world of Internet Governance. And to give it -- the short answer, I would ask you to please stop by the Diplo booth, pick up a book called "Emerging Leaders." There you can see just some samples of things that young people who have taken capacity building programmes have done and are doing. John Paul himself is a tutor for Diplo Founcation. He is changing Africa. Grace is changing the face of Internet Governance. Raquel Gatto is changing the face. The ISOC Ambassadors and the next generation leaders who are going to capacity building programmes, are changing the Internet Governance.
So John Paul's question has an answer. There is a book on it. Go down and check it out. While you're down there, I invite you to to get -- and I have the address, I'll give it to you. Diplo Foundation has a social network dedicated to IG issues and I invite you to join us.
We have two questions here, has the youth affected IG? Youth has already affected the IGF. You are here, you are changing the IGF. Yes, you have.
So on an institutional level you have affected IG. You have affected at an organizational level because you have affected Diplo Founcation where I work, and you will do so more as I take your comments into consideration during this next month. And I hope you'll have more input with me. You have already had an effect on me on a personal level, as you've changed me. So on every single level, yes, youth is and has and will affect Internet Governance.
What I have to say most importantly is I hope you will have even more, because we need you and we know it. You can take one quick look at what my generations -- well, our generations did with cable TV. You cannot pick what programme you want, you have to pick a package. There is no net neutrality on cable TV and we didn't know about it. We didn't find out about it. We didn't learn about it. And we are stuck with no neutrality on cable TV. You can make sure that doesn't happen to the Internet. So pick up the ball where we dropped it. Thank you.
>> GRACE MUTUNG'U: Thank you, Ginger. In conclusion, what has really come out of this workshop is that, first, all youth are a resource, like I said. There are no -- there were very few questions asked in this workshop, it was more about about contribution, because everybody has some knowledge to share with the rest or some experience to share with the rest.
We have hope this experience can be taken to other workshops. Because as we heard over and over again, the youth have to also be involved in the issues and not just discussing youth matters. You have to get involved in the issues. And thankfully the IGF is divided into five issues, and you can take your pick whatever interests you.
We have to be more participatory in the other processes that support the IGF. I'm a member of the noncommercial users constituencies of ICANN. I'm still learning the ICANN jargon. We also have to participate in those processes. Raquel mentioned a few of the regional IGFs and other processes, since we know something about IGF.
We already have a responsibility to mentor others. We cannot just talk about mentoring, as if it's somebody else to do it well. At Diplo we have to ask you to keep doing it, and ICANN other players, but we can go to others and teach others what we already know.
So in conclusion, I'd like to thank you so much for coming to this workshop and must inform you that through the youth coalition, which Tim is a member of, we will present a report of this workshop to the last session of the IGF, the taking stock. And we would like to call upon you to come and support it.
This will happen tomorrow. Thank you so much for coming.
(End of session)