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>> DIXIE HAWTIN: We'll start in one minute so please help yourself to a seat.
>> Good morning, everyone, we'll start now so if you are ready. Thank you very much for joining us in this workshop, "Charting the Charter: Internet Rights and Principles Online." Basically this is building on the work of one of the Dynamic Coalitions within the IGF which is called the Internet Rights and Principles Coalition. And it is one of the most active coalitions and it is a loose network of individuals and groups who are committed to upholding human rights on the Internet. And it is as a coalition that has been going in various forms nearly from the beginning of the IGF but really got going in 2009 where the group decided as a mission they wanted to look at how existing human rights could be upheld on the Internet so interpreting what existing human rights means in the context of the Internet.
And it wasn't a work kind of from nowhere, we were building on the work of other groups such as the association of progressive communications and their charter. And we really took as our founding document the Universal Declaration Of Human Rights which is part of customary international law now, something that every state in the world is obliged to follow under the ICCPR and the ICCES.
What we did was we took as a task, as a coalition going through those documents and working out what each section would mean for the Internet. That was both a kind of direct interpretation of what it would mean but we went beyond that and thought about what kind of policy principles should underline the Internet as well in order to make sure it's a space that really maximizes human rights.
We do have some copies around. We just printed a copy you can see over there, and I know also if you go to our website, it is Internetrightsandprinciples.org, you can see it in the online version.
As a process it was really robust. We had a really open process, absolutely anyone could join in, we had wikis, lots of phone consultations, we had lots of consultations in person and various IIGTs and other fora. We had a group of experts, I can see one in the back over there, human rights experts, that went through that data and tried to make it as concrete as possible. It's an ongoing process as well that we have had I think about three versions of the charter. We have never said this is the final version. This is still something we're working on and still a growing and hopefully strengthening document.
When the real first charter came out which I think was in about 2010, if I remember correctly, the environment was quite different. This was before Frank LaRue did his big report, UN Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression around how that applied to the Internet.
It was before the Human Rights Council made their famous resolution that human rights apply online as much as they do offline. It was before the NSA Prism scandal, so the environment that -- environment is changing quite rapidly. Some things for the good and many things not for the good.
Another thing that's been changing over the last few years is the statement of principles within the Internet Governance field.
As you probably see there are sets of principles coming out from all sorts of different avenues and all sorts of different forums and lots of other groups have come up. OECD, Courts of Europe, G8, and many, many more. Just recently we have seen the sole framework coming out of the sole cyberspace conference just last week, -- speech to the General Assembly was bringing up five principles and that's something that they -- sounds like they'll try to develop through the Rio Summit as well. So principles are something there are many, many of, and clearly the reason there are many of is people think that has some kind of value in the Internet Governance field to try to develop these principles.
I also think there's a question at the moment if we are moving from norm creation and lots of groups trying to develop these sets of principles to some kind of hardening potentially. In particular, you'll see there's an IGF workshop I believe it's tomorrow that is looking at these different sets of principles and how we can bring them together potentially into an overarching set of principles into the Internet and of course the Rio Summit if it goes ahead and does try to do this is making something more definitive than what we've had in the past.
Given these kind of changing contexts, what we want to -- there are three things that we're aiming to do today. One is trying to highlight potentially what would be called neglected human rights issues. When we did this process we were working with the full 8 UDHR but whenever you see human rights mentioned it tends to be about freedom of expression and privacy which are of course two of the core rights but there are many others which are important as well and we don't want them to get lost.
That's one thing we're trying to do today.
Anything you can bring to these things are very welcome.
The second is how can we use human -- use documents like principles and charters to better protect human rights in the Internet environment. We have got this charter, APC charter, other sets, how can they be used as living documents to enforce human rights.
And the final thing that we really want to try to begin to address is looking at if there is a hardening of principles going on at the moment, how can we engage in those processes to make sure human rights aren't forgotten in that process or aren't sidelined. So those are three goals with my very distinguished panel. We are also looking at feeding into these goals into many other workshops, into. IRP workshop looking how to bring the charter specifically forward, also going to feed in outcomes from this discussion into the main one about Internet Governance principles.
Please do engage, bring your thoughts to the table. See what we can do. I have a really great panel which I'm very happy to introduce to you. I think I'll do it one-by-one as they come to speak. So we're starting by kind of a brief overview of some -- what we calm neglected human rights and maybe the role of charter and principles in relation to them.
I'll start with Pranesh Prakash at the center for Internet Society in India. Also a Policy Fellow at Yale Law School and he's going to talk about the rights of the visually impaired.
>> PRANESH PRAKASH: Thank you so much, Dixie.
First off, I should not be here. It should actually be my colleague (?) who herself is blind and who many of you who have been to the either Hyderabad or Sharm IGFs may have had a chance to meet. I am here I guess in a representative capacity at CIS as I mentioned my colleagues are blind, so all the internal communications we have within CIS have to be accessible. All of the material that we put out as CIS has to be accessible and so this, the issue of accessibility for persons who are blind and other persons who are disabled is something that is for me a little more personal as well.
This issue is addressed in the IRP in Principle Number 13. Which is the rights of people with disabilities and the Internet and the first one emphasizes that is accessibility to the Internet for persons with disabilities, that persons with disabilities have a right to access on an equal basis with others to the Internet.
And it talks about standards and guidelines for accessibility but very importantly not just the development and promulgation of such standards but monitoring which is right now the biggest thing that is lacking.
So the Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Open Standards have in the past focused on the importance of, within the IGF of ensuring accessibility. This year I must regret to say the IGF processes haven't been the most accessibility-friendly. Some of the pages that are online, there is no way to get the schedule in an accessible format because most links point to an inaccessible version of the schedule. So there is still a lot to be done even at home ,in a manner of speaking.
There are things such as the web content accessibility guidelines which the W3C has come out with, and ARIA, so there be standards around these areas but what is lacking to a great extent is monitoring. In India as well, as far back as 2010, Indian government, late 2009, 2010, Indian government actually put out guidelines for web -- all governmental websites, part of those guidelines included guidelines on accessibility. We decided to see how well they fare and one of the -- we decided to go through 9,000 Indian government websites to find out whether 93 actually were accessible.
First finding was that not everything that was listed in the official list of government websites actually existed. So around one-third of the pages we expected to be there didn't exist. Apart from that, we found the bulk of websites there are that the government of India runs in which it is under an obligation to make accessible actually but weren't accessible at all.
We provided this report to the government which is now coming up with a revised version of these website guidelines and hopefully there should be progress on that.
Monitoring is something that is generally very lacking and I'm glad this is mentioned here, the second idea that is mentioned in this is availability and affordability of the Internet, that steps must be taken to provide systems with disabilities both content in suitable format as well as ensuring that it is available and provide in an affordable cost.
Now, this is where ideas are some of the work we at CIS are doing but people all over the world are doing on assistive technologies especially with -- made with free and open source software built on open standards is essential because without proprietary software, it just -- you can't get the price points you need.
To give an example, JAWS is one of the most widely used screen readers in the world but how most people in India have access to JAWS is through piracy. And some of this is in a sense officially condoned as well because every, each copy of JAWS cost multiple months' average salary in India. Okay? And it just is not affordable and I'm talking about average salary of able-bodied people and we to know and studies have shown that persons with disabilities do not earn the same. So for them it is much, much harder to have access to screen-readers which are proprietary in a legal way which is where projects such as the Non-visual Desktop Access Project or the ARCA project where software like that really has to step in.
I want to briefly touch upon the idea of whether these kinds of statements of principles and whether just high-level ideas like this are useful at all.
Recently I was involved in as part of a Civil Society contingent at WIPO during the negotiations of the Marrakesh treaty to facilitate access to published work for the blind, visually and otherwise disabled but the treaty for the blind is a great new step at WIPO which for the first time asserts that Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities, specifically of the blind, have to be given -- within the copyright system. That the copyright system is not only about owners of copyright that the users have copyright especially blind people in this instance have to -- their human rights to access, to works has to be given importance, too. A large part -- a large part of the discussions during negotiations, when things were at a -- you know, when things sometimes tended to come up to a standstill, someone would point out the obligations of most of those nations under the UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
That had sometimes the effect of breaking that standstill, of seeing that there is an important principle we are working towards which has to be given importance and so the UNCRPD actually became part of the negotiation text as well in multiple -- at multiple times and so even though the UNCRPD is applicable only to nation the states to apply as they see fit within their own national systems but the principles contained in that became very important in the negotiation of this new treaty. This new treaty has already -- is starting to bear effect because industry was also there especially those parts of the industry which are dedicated to providing greater access to blind people and they have already started making use of this treaty.
So the treaty is useful but the UNCRPD was referenced multiple times and those high-level statements of principle were also very important.
I just want to end it there. Thanks a lot, Dixie.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you. We'll move to another potentially neglected issue and I'll hand over to Marianne Franklin to talk to us about the right to education.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Right. Thanks very much.
Good morning, yes, I'm here in my capacity as an educator as opposed to my current capacity as co-chair of the IRP Coalition. So I'm putting on another hat, the hat that pays my wages and gets me on the plane here, but it is an overlooked area, the educational setting, the one in many which issues we are dealing with at the high level often converge and we don't often realize this.
So what I'll relate to is of course the clause in the charter which is let me get there -- clause 10, right to education on and about the Internet. Of course this links of course to disability issues as well and disadvantaged access points but also links to clause 11, right to access to knowledge. I'll outline some very real, everyday situations one is dealing with as learning the way we find out about the world goes more and more online. Just because our students from two years old school entry right up to University, Ph.D. level take for grant most knowledge and resources they will access are online. This is a great thing but of course universities and schools make huge investments decision about what kind of software platforms they are going to use, what kind of access they'll allow. For instance, whether university libraries are now open access to the web or whether they put in fillers to stop, and usually the excuse is stop students wasting time.
Another one is educators makes use of commercial platforms such as Facebook because students are all on Facebook, what's the point of creating and generating a university-level one when they are all on Facebook anyway? These things are confronting us. We are looking at the digitalization in a positive sense. But given the charter is talking about education through the Internet and mentions specifically virtual learning environments, issue about open access and open data, educational resources that are accessible and affordable because of course in most, many schooling and university situations there is a huge divide in resources. Those that are rich, large, prominent universities, rich schools in large cities like London or New York can access the most expensive and most efficient and well-run platforms.
Others are strapped for cash.
This goes right down to the classroom and what generation of computers, what generation of operating systems are accessible to these students. This goes right down to what is called digital literacy or computer skills, right down to what content are these students accessing. How do teachers change their very teaching practices, very pedagogy, to take advantage of the wonderful opportunities.
What do libraries do? Digitize all their literature which most of them are doing. They create electronic resources, yet students still need to know what a book looks like. Or do they? So these are not just issues we deal with in the classroom every day but they have serious financial implications.
An example is when a university discovers the e-mail use and the online calendar use far exceeds their server capacities in-house of course there are very attractive and cost-efficient forms of outsourcing, cloud computing, I don't want to get into semantics but the case in the UK is a large number of universities have signed up to Microsoft and given a much more efficient platform from which to run e-mail and calendar services.
But this generates all sorts of other issues about proprietary software versus free and open source software. At the same time in the university in which I work we operate our own in-house virtual learning environment which is open source, Moodle, so immediately looks -- and forgive me for saying but I support it wholeheartedly. From my own point of view it looks somewhat clunky and old school so here you have students saying why aren't we on Facebook? Why aren't we on Facebook? Let's start a Facebook group. I don't know how many are for my programme and I think fine.
But the issue with ad-tracking is very important when you are talking about popular culture talking about films, so a decision many people don't see this as an issue but where in a knowledge place, institution for debate and we want to talk about things we want to do it in such way that free, open, debate is allowed and we have students coming from parts of the world where some topics are not necessarily easy to debate.
The issue about who is tracking whom, what they are saying online if they do this on Facebook, how they might be traced, we have students with very very deep issues about this dealing with sexual education, dealing with confronting new ideas and knowledge.
So the thing about education from the point of view of saying human rights, I want to take up Pranesh's point, if you look bottom-up every day, two-year-olds are now learning to read, learning basic skills with touch pads. Amazing. I've seen I used to teach in a young -- at the young entrance level way back in another life, used to teach them to read with books, now you use screens so I won't get into debate which is better than or not, I'm happy they are learning at all. We know the research is that children's literacy is increasing through using online.
They're not decreasing. The point is, what happens when a child goes up to a fish tank and tries to move the fish? What they need to know is we're looking at skill-building. These children know how to use these instruments extremely well, better than their teachers and parents, literacy programs allow them to make informed choices about where they debate knowledge.
When we are talking about education on the Internet it's a very nitty-gritty everyday choice that concerns management, investments, concerns teachers, curriculum, and it concerns children and young people and not-so-young people going back to university about the kinds of places they debate. Because it's like something you don't really talk about, I think the charter allows us to think about the high-level principle about if we have the right to access information and learn online in a free and open way, then we can start to break it down and get down to ground level.
On that level it's been very useful to think as an educator and I hope we cannot debate that. I have a whole list of things we can talk about and I'm sure others will bring up. Thank you very much.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you, Marianne.
I would now hand over to Joy Liddicoat with the Association for Progressive Communications to talk about another neglected issue and perhaps to offer some step-back considerations about where this discussion is going.
And yes, Joy.
>> JOY LIDDICOAT: Thanks, everybody.
I want to just reflect on the importance of the charter and charter-like instruments in relation to our own discourse as Internet Governance participants and how we might strategize to be using the charter in more creative ways. I'm thinking particularly since there's been a huge amount of change in human rights movements in the last 20 years. So we have for example since 1993 and the Vienna declaration which really for the first time saw in relation to women's human rights rape as a crime of war, over 20 years ago these new normative standards have been developed.
We've also seen changes in new standards for disabled people, we've got ILO convention 169 in relation to the rights of Indigenous people and more and more new standards all the time. So the charter needs to always be speaking, can't be a moment in time that captures only the issues and thoughts we have that, concerns we have at any particular moment, needs to be able to respond to the wider human rights discourse and movements changing and developing rapidly.
I think the charter really does that. It does include specific provisions around empowerment and women's equality but what we've seen in relation to women and Internet Governance is we have really stagnated in this forum. We need to squarely address it.
I've just come from another workshop on feminist -- and "Miss Internet Bali"? That in this day and age we can have that, no offense to her personally, but to have this kind of sexist demonstration in this forum is just completely unacceptable. We still have a very important discussion about women's participation in Internet governance and look at the panels, please fill in your gender report cards about particularly government and private sector panels and participation based on gender. We have seen the emergence through the leadership of women's rights movement of much greater push on Internet-related policy than we have from Internet rights activists so if we think about violence against women online, stalking, harassment, rape campaigns, we have seen cyber-legislation developed. For example, in the Philippines we've seen a huge amount of leadership from women's rights activists taking existing standards and saying these new forms of technology are creating new forms of violations that we need remedies and actions for.
I think that as internet rights activist we have more work to do to respond properly and to think more deeply about how to respond to the development of new remedies.
Another issue that we are seeing very much neglected is around the role of law, particularly in relation to revelations of mass surveillance. Most human rights defenders and women's are not saying this is a failure of Internet Governance, they don't want a new mechanism to respond to this, they see it squarely as a human rights violation and want human rights remedies because surveillance is not a new issue for many. In fact eastern European countries, many countries have lived under all forms for many decades. So our ability to respond to those concerns from an Internet perspective also needs challenge and that's where I think the charter has been neglected in terms of its ability to facilitate and enable more diverse human rights organisations to come into Internet related policy discussions on issues of concern to them in ways that also meet our concerns around multi-stakeholder bottom-up policies.
And I would like us to be thinking about the charter and we talk about some of the neglected rights, I think there's a fantastic provision in it that relates to the right to order, and neglected area in terms of how we can make links with other rights-related movements focused on this.
I have lots of questions, lots of thoughts and ideas about that but I think in the interests of time I'll stop there and let the next speaker go.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: I'm sure there will be time to come back to you for some other thoughts. IRP is a multi-stakeholder coalition but perhaps to some extent inevitably because of the subject matter most members do come from academia and Civil Society. But we do have business and government members and participants and now that we have had that kind of framing, I would like to turn, we've got a representative of business and government, and turn to them to see how documents like the charter can be used to fight their constituencies to see what they think about these wider conceptions of rights, is there something on the radar, something that they are open to and are they going to respond and how do we develop on documents like charter, how do we move towards enforcement.
So I will start by passing over to Michael Nelson, who's joined us from Microsoft.
>> MICHAEL NELSON: Dixie, thank you very much for inviting me to be here. I am here from Business and Civil Society, since its foundation for the last five years I've been an academic and still am teaching Internet at Georgetown University, previous to that I spent 10 years working in government so I'm really a multi-stakeholder man!
I'll talk today with that perspective. I've only been at Microsoft for two months so in many ways, I'm here to give you have the big picture in the context and talk about the practical question how does a company like Microsoft respond to charters on human rights and how do we live the commitments we've made?
I've been working on development for over 25 years. I have been in the middle of a lot of debates about policy but I'm a technologist and physicist, not a lawyer and I'm certainly not a human rights expert. I can impersonate a lawyer, I have spent a lot of time with them when working in the U.S. government. So I'm also a futurist. I think I hope that we'll have time for discussion about how future technologies will provide new challenges to human rights but also new opportunities to help us protect and promote human rights.
That's what I'm going to focus on today. Mostly focusing on how Microsoft is using technology to promote human rights around the world and how many of you have read the Microsoft Global Human Rights Statement? I had not either until I joined Microsoft.
It's a really impressive document. It's not so extraordinary that Microsoft has signed on to the global compact like many other companies. What's extraordinary is there's actual concrete steps that the company is taking to make sure it is in accordance with the universal declaration of human rights, convention on civil and political rights, international covenant on economic, social, and cultural rights and IOL declaration on fundamental principles and rights at work. If you read this document you see we are taking steps not only to ensure our employees are doing the right thing and to make sure that we're fostering human rights around the world. You also see we're working with more than 60,000 contractors, vendors, suppliers, people who make chips who go into our equipment, people who distribute our products, and we're also working with more than 600,000 business partners to make sure they're doing the right thing when it comes to human rights.
That's a key part of this process. You can't just turn to each company and say, what are you doing? You have to see how they're working with their ecosystem. One way is through the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition, IECC, which pertains to work conditions in the labs, in the fabs and factories that make the hardware. We are also very active members of the Global Network Initiative many of you are familiar with. It's an effort to work with companies from Yahoo! to -- well, I don't have the entire list but these are companies that are providing many services we rely on every day. They're facing real challenges when it comes to dealing with local laws in countries that have more repressive regimes.
Another important human rights-related activity is Family Online Safety Institute. Again, big supporters of that, work very closely with Steve Belkin to protect children online. You see that we are not just funding these outside organisations; we are doing things inside so our day-to-day operations are guided by our commitments to equal opportunity, to antidiscrimination. As a new employee I saw this myself. Two months ago I went through the Microsoft new employee orientation. There was a lot of time spent on these issues making sure we are good corporate citizens, treat employees fairly, do the right thing, moral thing. We have a digital crimes unit. This works to prevent use of the Internet for human trafficking, for child safety, we try to promote child safety.
We work with law enforcement around the world to fight child pornography. But the most important thing we're to go and the reason I'm so excited to be on this panel is because Microsoft is building technologies that will make it easier to support and foster human rights around the world. We do this in thousands of different ways. One thing we're doing is providing our tools and technology for free to more than 100 different human rights organisations around the world. That's a small thing. Big things we're doing is developing tools that will create new economic growth, bring people out of poverty so they aren't faced with some of the conditions that breed the problems we talk about today.
When people are desperate, poor, they do things that are in violation of anyone's definition of human rights. We are trying to foster development around the world using ICT. We are doing that in more than 100 countries. We work in countries that are not at the top of the Freedom House List of Free Countries.
We are there partly to engage with those governments to push them in the right direction. Also again to help build the economic system that will bring people to a better place so they can ensure equal opportunity for everyone ‑‑
The last point is just to echo your point. Microsoft is pushing for good governance and rule of law. Because you can't -- we can't hope to have governments that enforce human rights if you don't have a functioning capable government. That means promoting transparency, using technologies we build to ensure that citizens can monitor what the governments are doing and that will then lead to better human rights around the world. Happy to talk about many other issues but that's my quick take on how we're responding to the various charters on human rights and how we approach the whole issue.
Thanks again for the opportunity to be here and look forward to your questions.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you very much, Michael, and we will have a chance to respond and ask more questions after our final panelist which is Carl Frederick Wettermark from the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
>> CARL WETTERMARK: Pleasure to be here.
I would like to briefly touch upon a few issues from a government or rather from a forum policy perspective. I, too, feel as a multi-stakeholder person being here I'd like to consider myself as a Python programmer masquerading as a diplomat --
-- So I'll to my best to be representative of the latter rather than the former but I have done personally a journey from working within basically systems development and programming to doing domestic ICT within Sweden and the European Union ,now working on the international policy arena.
It's been very fulfilling to follow that whole chain and see where their process is lacking and where it is actually efficient. And I think I'd like to touch on the subject of how and if documents like this one are due to matter for governments. Because I think that's an issue that is discussed and how it matters. Just to give you a bit of an overview of first of all just want to say yes they do matter immensely.
I would like to briefly just describe the function of documents like this one within government settings and view the a bit of uncensored picture of how things have gone within government because truth is that Internet Governance is very complicated, not just for developing countries or for companies.
It's very difficult for countries like mine as well. Processes are extremely complicated, very hard to get a grip on the -- important to separate what is important from what's not and there's a tremendous lack of capacity even from governments.
I would like to illustrate that by commending those of you in the -- sphere here on the amazingly well-made map of Internet Governance principles pulled out here. I actually put that on the big atlas of the foreign minister's desk so he could get an overview of these issues because that's where we are. It's not we don't have the resources to get any more information than anyone else so in that sense we are severely strained when it comes to capacity and understanding the field.
And in that sense, documents like this one fulfill a very important role in setting things in motion because governments are very reactive constructs. They tend to adapt to circumstances changing or they tend to adapt to incoming documents. It's important to remember governments are heterogeneous creations. Not all parts of government or governments do agree on issues. In fact, I would say that more than half of my working day consists of making sure there is a single government position on issues such as these ones and it's very difficult when working government to relate to the general field or general discussion within the Internet Governance world. It's very, very difficult as a government individual to do that. This is not a new phenomenon.
I remember working in 2008 with the EU telecoms package, very controversial piece of legislation that passed through the EU and there was a massive Civil Society protest against the exclusion of rights-language in that piece of legislation.
However, it was extremely difficult as a government to react to this because there wasn't a single document, there was nothing which had been sent in. Just a general notion of discontent that was really hard to grasp so what happens hen is that it's very difficult as a diplomat working within the international field to convey accurately the notion that there are norms and standards and expectations within international society to other government ministries. Because I would -- in working with this, one should also remember that the disconnect between that domestic policy making and international within governments is just now starting to be bridged so up until now it's been very concretely so that Internet, national Internet policy making has been the remit of the ministries of commerce or enterprise or communications, very small context to international affairs.
That is changing now. We are seeing the Swedish Delegation -- one person from the Ministry of Enterprise. That would not have been the case just a few years ago. So that is definitely changing. But I should say that particular aspect is tremendously important. As someone working in the foreign service you need to present a concrete document that you will be able to send to other government ministries when you do policy making so it's a very down-to-earth, has a very down-to-earth, very concrete impact in terms of being able to point to something actually going on in the outside world.
So I'll close with that bit of overview of how these things function and like to commend you on this important work that is obviously now being circulated on intragovernmental e-mail lists in our governments and that does matter because that is possibly one of the few ways that we can connect the broader human rights to implementation and discussion about how to implement.
That's normally not something normally done within governments. We don't normally write elaborate analyses or documents about how we should, quite simply not time for that. We are heavily reliant on input from external actors so we are very grateful and thank you very much.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you very much, Carl.
With that, I'd like to open it up to the audience. I see one hand already. If you want to comment, respond -- I can see four hands, five hands, great. That's what I like to see. Eduardo.
>> Thank you, thanks for this presentation. I like Mike's definition of "multi-stakeholderman" so I will use that definition. I worked in the private sector as private lawyer defending journalists, I worked in the governmental organisation, Rapporteur with the Interamerican Commission on Human Rights, now I work for many NGOs and now I am working in academia, law Professor and Director of the Center for Studies on Freedom of Expression at Palermo University in Buenos Aires.
My comments and suggestions -- I started the discussion of the charter three years ago in Buenos Aires, we hosted Frank LaRue's Regional meeting, your former colleague, Dixie, Lisa Conner was there presenting the first draft of the charter. And we started the discussion about importance of having this kind of document and it was a very very first draft so I'm very happy to see today the charter is printed. It is on the website and I would say that it would be important to have some sort of final document. I understand that it is important to have a document that could be you know completed or amended or whatever but for -- purposes it's important to have something concrete because if you present it and this happens to me a lot of time if you present a document as ongoing document, it does not have the power to convince people that you have there something important. I suggest to sell the idea this is in some way the final draft of the charter so it's the charter, okay? It could be open in the future but this is the document.
In terms of how to use the document, this was your second question, Dixie, as far as I remember, now I'm jumping to my academic vision I think one way to use the document is as Marianne said, in courses, I am teaching human rights and the Internet in my university and it is very common that students when they take the course they think we are going to talk about Internet and freedom of expression and privacy and that's it.
So the charter is very useful and I introduce the charter in one of my last classes and as a review of all the course, very useful because open the mind of people that are approaching to this idea of human rights and Internet, that it is much, much broader than freedom of expression and privacy.
I think that using charter in the academic sector is important to spread the word of the charter but also to, for pedagogical issues to explaining when you talk about human rights you are talking about much more things than freedom of expression and privacy.
My last point is languages. I am using in my courses an old Persian that was translated into Spanish and I would be happy our center in Buenos Aires look the difference between this last document and documents that was translated before and to have the final document in Spanish as well but I think that this document will be more and more powerful if it is translated to many, many other languages so we are going to do that. I talk to Marianne in the past and said that it will be easy because we have a first version in Spanish we need just to check if the version we have is the same version of this last document. But I encourage other academic institutions or advocates to put this charter in into languages as well.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: That's wonderful, very helpful. More hands.
I'll pass to Andrew first and then to you. Please introduce yourselves to the room.
>> Thanks, Andrew -- from Global Partners Digital in London. Head of ICANN has talked a lot about there being orphan issues within the sphere of the Internet. Do people on the panel think there are human rights issues which are orphan issues within the current system and do you think we need more principles, one of the things the Brazilian summit promised to look like and do we need a different Internet management wri has been a topic that will be raised at the Rio Summit. Is that what human rights needs at the moment, more principles and different kind of management structure?
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Please.
>> Thank you very much. I'm Derrick Cogburn, Executive Director of the Institute on Disability and Public Policy for the ASEAN region and also Professor at American University in the School of International Service in our International Communication Programme.
I want to commend you for a great document and I particularly am thankful for your inclusion of Principle 13 on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on the Internet and I have three or four suggests for you. I guess I may differ a little bit from colleague from Buenos Aires about the concreteness of it. There is certainly benefit of having charter being presented as a concrete document so printing it makes sense and you want to be able to have it in that way. But I think there's also perhaps room for continued evolution and improvement of the document with greater input and I don't know if that's -- I don't know the process you've gone through -- you guys are having challenges up there --
I could see interesting contributions that additional voices might make to strengthening Principle 13. For example, whereas you referenced Article 4 of the CRPD to focus on the human rights nature of the whole convention, and it is seen as the first treaty of the twenty-first century so that's right, to focus on that and bring it into the human rights body of treaties and so forth.
But I think there are additional elements of the CRPD that are relevant particularly in an Internet Governance context so I would highlight Article 8 which focuses on awareness so Article 8, each Article is in the CRPD so Article 8 is on awareness-raising so you could highlight the use of the Internet to raise awareness about disability issues and about persons with disabilities. Article 9 focuses on access ability explicitly and it has two aspects of access abilitys, physical and electronic access abilities and the Committee write now is taking comments on how the committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities should interpret Article 9 on accessibility so this is an opportunity for everybody here that contributed in this area and has expertise in how the UN might interpret Article 9 on accessibility to weigh in and I can give the organizers the link to the office of High Commission for Human Rights where that call for comment is available and it would be great to have people to comment on that.
Article 24, Marianne focuses on education -- I'm over here -- Article 24, this is Derek -- focuses on education so Marianne, your comments certainly relate to this Article and then Article 29 focuses on political participation which I think would be another area that is linked to this area. So again I think focusing on Article 4 is great because it puts it into the human rights context but there's a broader one you can engage and then lastly the UN General Assembly a few weeks ago held the high-level meeting on disability and development trying to articulate the post-2015 development agenda so after the MDGs in what will happen? They adopted an outcome document that says now across the UN system similar to the way the MDGs tried to organisation much of the activity of the UN there will be this integration of disability and development so this is a powerful moment to had to what you are trying to do.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you very much and to say that the relevant to that, the IRP coalition meeting is on Thursday morning. You'll see that in the agenda, chance to go into those substantial issues in more detail. I'm going to pass on, in the interests of time, please, like two minutes or something or even less, wonderful, pass to Max from Google.
>> Hi, good morning. Max -- I work with Google in Germany and I would like to comment on the idea of this ever being a final document which I think is going to be impossible because of the nature of the Internet and evolutions that happen and need to adopt and understand how technology, what implication it has for human rights. I don't think there should be a final document but there could be final version and clear versioning that indicates this is a consolidated status. But what my comment is about really is about principles part of the charter. This is an excellent outcome of many consultations, however, 99% is on the rights and I think there is some principles in the -- charter but when it comes to the longer version it is I think -- they are not as present. I'm wondering how the relationship between the punchy charter is to the long charter and whether you plan to have any work going in this direction I'm just looking at neutrality in particular standards and regulation and governance seem the ones that have taken up quite some international debate also.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: There's a gentleman on this side and then you. Please introduce yourself.
>> My name is (inaudible) and I am blogger/activist with (inaudible). My question to you guys is there are different charters and rights that have been approved and that is online. But what I see especially in context of the developing countries, there is a big gap in between the actual charters and the accident na ability especially in the developing countries of context. How can we overcome or how can we bridge and as you might know, number of issues of human rights cases that are happening despite the fact that the countries have signed in -- how practical to criminalize freedom of expression?
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Can you explain the last question.
>> How practical is it to criminalize freedom of expression?
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: What do you mean by that?
>> In context of especially in Nepal there have been cases where bloggers and journalists have been arrested for writing articles and recently one of the associate editors was arrested by police just for sharing a news in his official fan page. News was done three months back, when he had shared it in his Facebook fan page the government, police, had arrested him. So yeah, thank you.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: That is a growing issue, I think, criminalization of certain types of speech online. That's something we can try to touch on. Okay. The lady at the front and then Marianne at the back and then we'll come back.
>> Thank you, I'm from UNESCO, big pleasure to be here first of all and to thank, congratulate the coalition on this great outcome. Just quick pick from blogger's intervention as safety issues and free express of the new media actors such as bloggers which has been really included into action plan protecting journalists as safety and to address the issue of -- because nowadays journalism notion has been renovated to include not only professional license, general lifts but also those bloggers individuals who are producing news items, infrastructure on Internet as to one feedback to that.
And coming back to this IRP principles I do appreciate it because it provides very inclusive framework to address complex digital rights and UNESCO we are also under demand by Member States to address the Internet related issues with renovated conceptual framework.
Now exploring new concepts to sensitize Member States on Internet Governance -- we have four pillar principles, some of us we do have in separation from your chapter. First pillar of the universality is human rights based. Yes, Internet should be used to promote free expression and have privacy and also treats the multiple human rights as we stand out in the universal declaration not only free expression but privacy and education and right to culture and participation and also right to have multilingualism in cyberspace, many important information medical science information to be developed in not only English but other languages. And also gender equality on Internet women's equal access and use of Internet. All included in this framework. That's one I appreciate. Second pillar we talk about accessibility. In this we go beyond notion of access because it's not just about access to the minimum level in infrastructure but also social inclusion we should have equality of access from those different social groups.
We should not have the divide based on social or socio-economic status such as literacy education level such as language. If they don't understand English and still can't access with the -- access information, and also based on gender and disabilities should also be inclusive in this access. That's further we go ahead with maybe one issue neglect is that media information literacy, digital of all of us. Even those educated people, I think all of us need to be more active digital citizens in this cyberspace. We need skills competence and to critically be more constructively used and access Internet and development from it. That's two areas I like to share. Other two pillars is about the openness and multi-stakeholder. I won't belabor it.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Yes.
>> Yes, just finish with my -- with the question. With the question that so from my point well I want to also echo the other position what's next step for this charter, what you do to implement it. Thank you.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you, and UNESCO is a very important partner in kind of pushing these broad understandings of human rights.
I will pass on to Marianne so, panelists, get ready because then I'll come back to you guys.
>> I'm raised in Paris with French National Research Center. Member of the IOP Coalition and in her opening she mentioned I was one of the human rights expert who reviewed charter. Since this panel is discussing ways on how to use this charter I would like to mention one very important way to use this charter. This is making glue out of it. The national level -- low even at -- mention one first experience the Council of Europe has specific whether I tried to institutionalize the work we did with this charter in the IRP Coalition and it has set up a Committee of experts to prepare guide, what is now guide for human rights of Internet user.
It still has to be adopted by the ministerial level in the Council of Europe but the draft guide is already available and it will be open for discussion at the session on Friday but again this is one experience by the Council of Europe and I think this experience could be used and maybe reproduced in other parts of the world in other regions or even at the national level and this is a very important achievement.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you. So we're hearing about lots of different initiatives building out of the charter, a lot still in the space of soft law, we have questions about whether we should try to harden it into a final document or leave it open. Questions about whether human rights represent one of these orphaned issues in the field that need to be taken somewhere into a new mechanism. The gaps in developing countries between rights and realties, I'll leave it open to my panelists to choose which issue they want to pick up on.
Pass to Carl Frederick.
>> CARL WETTERMARK: I want to start by addressing Andrew's issues, his question, whether or not we need new mechanisms and if this is an orphan issue. It's right now I would say that we don't really know what's going on to be frank. We are -- seems there are so many new suggestions floating around, Brazilian proposals and all of the different initiatives being taken will clearly need to become more clear and we will proceed announced before we know what this is actually going to become but what's clear though is I wouldn't say we need new mechanisms for discussing human rights language, I think that we, what institutions we have they will need to be underpinned by human rights principles. I would not want to see the issue isolated to any, a certain new mechanisms but rather I think the somewhat generalized consensus seems to be arising you do need to be integrated deep into the fabric of any potential new setup.
I think that would be my preliminary answer to that but like everyone else we're just trying to get a grasp of what's really happening. Thanks.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you, Carl.
Would anyone else like to respond to any of the questions or points raised?
Yes, Michael. Sorry.
>> MICHAEL NELSON: I would actually like to respond to all questions and we'll be here for the next 30 minutes doing that. Very good questions.
Let me put on my skeptical physicist's hat. In my opening remarks I was very positive on this initiative because it is a very positive one, getting very good discussion going about fundamental issues that need to be addressed online and offline. Problem with the document as it stands now is it's not going to be read by the CEOs, CFOs, engineers, marketing people who really need to absorb it and factor it into their work. For this to be successful it has to be like some of the higher-level documents that Microsoft has endorsed. It can't be quite as specific as it is now. And it also has to be more realistic just to point to one example. At the very end of the charter you have general clauses, 21 A, interdependence of all rights in the charter.
"All rights contained in this charter are interdependent and mutually reinforcing." No way! Many of the rights listed here conflict with each other. The right to freedom of speech is going to lead some people to say things that will be seen as hate crime or impinging on someone's freedom of religion and that's more so on the Internet than anywhere else.
So we have to in this document and in our discussions recognize that rights are ideals and they conflict and to not realize that in this document I think would lead a lot of people to say how can I implement it and they'll set it aside. I don't think this can ever be implemented in hard law, certainly in soft law and norms. That's what we've done at Microsoft. But again, you have to make clear limits.
Another example in the principles page where we talk about neutrality of the Internet. Microsoft is firmly on the side of those who don't want to see discrimination among services on the Internet. We provide Skype. There are dozens of countries that block Skype. On the other hand, this language says the Internet will be free from prioritization or traffic control. Every network that provides support for the Internet has traffic control. That's not going to change. Particularly for wireless networks. I want traffic control! I want the bits coming from my heart monitor to get through before a porn video. Again, there's places in here where they're too detailed, too bound to today's technology and not actually going to accomplish the goals that the authors have set out to do. I also think it would not be helpful to try to freeze this and say this is the final document. The great thing about this document is it has led to a lot of very good discussion.
There are things I'd like to see added to this. When I was working with the Internet Society as their Vice-president for Policy, in addition to my full-time job at IBM, we came up with six -- and after a lot of discussion we decided not to use "rights" language, partly because a lot of people in certain parts of the world see rights as something that the U.S. is trying to force on them. We talked about abilities and one of the most important was the ability to innovate. The ability to take technology and do new things. That again is a goal that I think is in here but we need to talk about some of these other things that support human rights. We don't need a right to innovate or be forgotten. We don't need a right to silence of the chips. There are a lot of rights floating around but we do need the ability to innovate to provide for better solutions and better options so we can actually promote and protect human rights using technology of the Internet, cloud, Internet of Things, and all the rest.
I hope I haven't been too skeptical but I do think this is a very valuable effort about I'm glad to be here and able to comment on it.
>> On Net Neutrality, if you are watching porn, you definitely want your heart monitor coming through at the same time! Just put a pitch for that.
I'm really pleased you made your remarks actually because I think these conceptual differences are precisely why we need multi-stakeholder processes because there's no doubt human rights conflict and that is not at all what the intention of Article 29 is about, what it's saying is where these rights conflict in human rights terms we need to resolve those conflicts in ways that are rights-affirming. I'm really excited because -- curriculum training and you're going to be invited to come and participate in it so we can share some ideas.
But seriously I think it's good if you are talking about this is -- that's how we get understanding and also how we in Civil Society can know what are the challenges that private sector face when they are responding to how governments want them to engage so that's critical and thank you for it.
I want to answer Andrew's question. I want to answer it clearly and firmly. ICANN is not a human rights standard-making body. I want to say that again. It's not a human rights standard-making body and human rights are not an orphan issue in Internet Governance. They have a very clear, strong home across multiple international networks and national networks as well. I strongly object to any suggestion that ICANN could construct human rights as some kind of orphan issue over which it might have some kind of aegis. It's a private corporation, I'm -- that are on the -- in ICANN so I'm speaking from a space of knowledge and engagement. I can tell you that we have struggled in the non- -- constituency has struggled to get ICANN to even accept as a private corporation doing public policy it has human rights obligations so it's very dangerous and I'm concerned that there might be some thought about ICANN having any role. I think it would be great if ICANN joined the initiative, look at the leadership of Microsoft and others other have done so.
Put put the money where the mouth is and walk the talk. That's my view. Having said that, I think that it's good if ICANN is talking human rights with governments. It needs to and what's going on there, and we want to see more of it and more pushing and I think the charter is an excellent tool for that. Particularly if we look at issues of right to cultures, Patagonia, for example, we wants right discourse in there.
I also want to acknowledge the point made about the gap between rights standards and practice, of course, and I think the global south and developing countries need to strategize more and work more together on this and share more of that with their brothers and sisters from the global north particularly around things like new forms of rights violations such as criminalizing expression.
Finally, there are ways we're seeking to use the charter, citing it in universal peer-review assessments of countries human rights performance. There are aids to interpretation which it can offer and I feel like Margaret Atwood in "The Handmaid's Tale," a story about a secret language that woman feel they can't use because they don't have enough words to use it. And the protagonist asked, how many do we have? They said, we have 2,000. Well, actually most people use less than a thousand so you can begin.
My point is I think we should just begin to start using charter and not worry about crystalizing it too much, but just acknowledging limitations of where we are at this point. Thanks.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Valentina and then back to Marianne. Wait -- if Marianne is following on quickly she can go first. If anyone else has points put your hand up.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: These comments are extremely valuable and criticism particularly eye for detail is very important at this point as we move charter forward.
I want to respond directly to Max's point about the relationship between what we call 10 punchy principles and longer charter. I endorse entirely what Joy just said, when we say orphan we disempower, orphans have rights as well, even if they are important fans it is less the point they are orphans, my point is this is exactly this, they weren't -- they were devised to distill a complex document for outreach and educational purposes. I don't think they were ever -- people can correct me here -- designed to be the ultimate statement on principle but human rights are a form of principle. Not all principles are human rights; hence, the 10 principles is simply there as a way in.
I use them in outreach situations because you can get them on one side. I think the longer charters is what we are focusing on to generate this very discussion. As Derek highlighted and concentrate on what may seem like contradictions, I would suggest as Joy has interdependence does not necessarily mean the same, interdependence does not mean there are not tensions and the UN could have -- all of them, tension is a push-and-pull. It's how you implement these and realize real-life, nitty-gritty and for me I know it was the political rule, more detail-less agreements, I would like to forge on and concentrate just on these details within a broad framework understanding interdependence is not the same as being the same. It's working through tensions in a coherent and proportional way. Thank you.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you. It's last time back to the audience so if you have quick comments there's Valentina and then the gentleman there.
>> Good morning, Valentina from Bosnia, I am a citizen, I pay taxes, I am a user so I give my data for free and then BigData I can sell and all the sins that of the world so I'm into corporation but I'm truly activist and I think it's important that when we send up multi-stakeholder it's really important to know who we are and I think listening to the gentleman from Microsoft says I think there is nothing bad in being a man from the corporation. What I find really difficult for me to accept is someone says that the word "rights" is something not to be used because some government, government thinks this belongs to the U.S.
I think we have to keep rights where they are. We need rights. And
>> -- (Inaudible) --
>> That's the way I understood. That's why I'm talking. So if you let me finish, it would be nice. Thank you very much.
So I find the idea of very important space because it's the space where we can talk and I think it's important that we talk with all our identities. But I think the rights are essential. If we want that the world is a world of citizens, and I would also like to say maybe the charter is general. But listening to the charter that could not be use the because as a political implication it's a place for dialogue and discussion for opening up of a place but if someone is a principle, if something is difficult in being implemented, no reason to think it would never be implemented.
(Standing by for audio)
>> Just want to comment on a point that came up in different ways, one through Max and on for instance the not quite overlap between the 10 punchy principles and the rest of the charter so if you look at the provision on net neutrality and net equality, in the charter it is much more well phrased, because it talks about there not being special privileges on certain kinds of grounds, social, cultural political, as the neutrality principles and punchy doesn't do that, hence leading to different kinds of interpretations of it and its ramification on heart monitoring traffic so that I don't think is intended and that I think there is more work to be done on this.
And on the idea of how best this is to be used I actually tend to disagree with Joy, that it is best used by reference so one way would be to say that here we have a set of principles, let's see how different countries match up.
I don't think that works because charter has not achieved that status yet and I'm not sure whether it ever will be the defining document of what we are trying to do but on the other hand there are things like the universal periodic review and by reference I think this charter can become more important and that is one way of going forward.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you.
>> MICHAEL NELSON: I just want to say I really appreciate the chance to be here and be part of this discussion and very glad it is such a diverse audience and such a diverse panel. Quite often when you come to a discussion of human rights, it's human rights lawyers talking to each other. In order for this to be effective you really do have to talk to the whole gamut of government, industry, activists, academia, average citizens and you have to talk in a way they can understand.
At Microsoft, we have been real leaders in developing technologies for the disabled community partly because we think that's the right thing to do but partly also because it's a way to engage a larger community in using the tools that we're developing and that is another part of the story that we can tell here, that rights have benefits beyond being the right thing to do. There is a marketing pitch to be done here, and I really commend the group for doing such a good job of trying to bring the classic ideas of human rights into cyberspace.
Thank you again.
>> I'd like to echo that. Good to have dissonance because I think we can easily become formulaic about our mantra about perspectives and we don't disagree and it's really boring. It's also not the point. The point is we want to know what our differences are and explore and understand them and find ways to
-- actual value, particularly, for example, when working with women's rights activists to try to articulate for them and with them with particular rights issues that Internet rights advocates are pushing for and for them to be able to get that into their work and there are opportunities for collaboration we should really try to reach out for. For example for the Dynamic Coalition to be having side events at some other human rights meetings to put forward the charter and talk and deepen understanding about it.
>> We clearly have started the work. We need to keep moving and talking about on Thursday morning at 9:00 and tomorrow we have a whole panel also organised by the IRP Coalition on disadvantage groups and the Internet with some of these other important issues.
My final point is this: Mike's point about generational versions is very important because we're talking about I agree with Eduardo we are getting on with it. This is in this 1.1 version and that is good enough for now, clearly things to address, sloppy kind of phrasing, some unnecessary contradictions so in that sense I would stress we are working towards charter 2.0 but this is still a valid concrete thing and thank you very much, everyone, for confirming and affirming work and giving us ideas to take that further. That's my IRP Coalition hat on. I talked to 400 schoolboys about this, so the 10 principles help.
We have to start using it and go from there. Thank you very much, everyone.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you. A round of applause for the panel, please.
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This text is being provided in a rough draft format. Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) is provided in order to facilitate communication accessibility and may not be a totally verbatim record of the proceedings.