[IRP] layers approach to stratify internet governance
Thu Sep 17 05:59:58 EEST 2009
I tried tracking the stratification of internet and internet governance: attached is a table i slammed together that helps me think about the layers approach a bit (could be more detailed but can't fit it in the boxes).
From: irp-bounces at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org [irp-bounces at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org] On Behalf Of Max Senges [maxsenges at gmail.com]
Sent: Monday, September 14, 2009 12:30 PM
Subject: [IRP] layers approach to stratify internet governance
One of the interesting and constructive debates in our workshop yesterday was about how to stratify our struggle for human rights and principles on the internet.
Anriette has pointed me to the APC 2006 anual report where she distinguishes between: a physical layer, a protocols infrastructure layer, and an interactional or relational layer.
As you know Lisa and myself have proposed for very similar layers/commons (infrastructure, services (everybody who runs a website or service), social = netiquette, and of course Access as an extremely important goal, but politically different animal).
The structuring of our discourse around rights is the most natural, but as I have argued before: I believe that it is more strategic to address existing communities (the infrastructure people, the services, and the users) rather than gather around our rights flag.
I copy Anriette's text below.
Looking forward to your comments and especially edits either to the google doc (i tried to make it editable for everyone but it should definitly work through the invitation i sent to the list) or in the http://irc.wiki.apc.org/ (where you need to register)
Why is information and communications infrastructure
so fundamental to development and social change?
I believe the answer lies in the layered nature of information and communications
infrastructure. It has a physical layer (e.g. the internet backbone, radio spectrum,
computers), a protocol or logical layer (e.g. open standards to ensure all sectors of
the internet ?talk? to each other), and content and applications.
Yet one can also argue that there is another layer, one which is constituted by
the social processes that are facilitated by the infrastructure. It can be termed the
?interactional? or ?relational? layer of ICT infrastructure. I like to think of this layer
as having two primary components.
First, it is where the narratives of globalisation, diversity, inclusion and exclusion
are located. ICT expansion has positive and negative consequences. E-governance and
reliance on the internet for access to information can increase exclusion and contribute
to the formation of new elites. New applications and services emerge every day, but
usually require access to credit cards and bank accounts.
But it is also in this layer where people, individually and in groups, appropriate the
infrastructure and claim space for protest, self-expression, sharing and learning. It is a
kind of macro-microcosm. Blogging, podcasting, social bookmarking, photo sharing,
citizens? journalism: there are many different labels and tools. There is an ongoing
tug of war between developers, markets, people and cultures of use.
What about people who do not have access? Is the global communications infra-
structure a public good to which all people should have access?
APC believes the answer is ?yes?. People who live in poverty, who are socially,
economically and politically disempowered, deserve access to means that will enable
them to speak, to be heard, to use online services and to participate in decisions that
impact on their lives.
The second component of the interactional or relational layer of this infrastructure
is the public participation or social justice component. In a real sense it can facilitate
transparency and accountability, participatory policy formulation and implementation,
mobilisation, solidarity and protest. This does not happen because of the existence
of the internet. It happens because people, communities and organisations use the
internet to organise and/or obtain the information they need to improve their lives.
""Progress is the realization of Utopia"
. . . . . . . . . . Oscar Wilde
Dr. Max Senges
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: Tracking the stratification of Internet and Internet Governance.pdf
Size: 24868 bytes
Desc: Tracking the stratification of Internet and Internet Governance.pdf
More information about the IRP