[IRP] FW: Draft Internet Charter Rev. 31082010

Lisa Horner LisaH
Wed Sep 1 20:02:39 EEST 2010

Dear all

Please find attached a version of the Charter in which Wolfgang has attempted to incorporate as many of the comments as he could.  Please also see his email below for your information.  Thanks to Wolfgang for his work.

Please have a look through.  If you feel that there are still outstanding, burning issues that need to be addressed in the Charter before Vilnius, please let us know asap...at least by next Monday 6th September.  Otherwise, I suggest that you flag them up as points for discussion in Vilnius and beyond.

In response to Shaila's comment about sections needing more work, I fully agree.  However, I also agree with Wolfgang that we have to move ahead and present this draft more or less as it is as we're now out of time.  But if others have strong opinions on this, please do voice them and we can all discuss.

I am really keen to work out a process that will allow people to feel that we've done enough thinking on different sections of the Charter, reached out to the right expert groups and included the right communities in the process.  The main ingredients we need for that are people-power, funding and time!  I'd like to propose that we have An informal coalition business meeting in Vilnius to discuss these process issues (rather than Charter), both relating to the Charter and to the wider development and activities of the coalition.  In particular, we need to consider possibilities for raising funds for the process.  Would the lunch break on the first day suit people?  It'd be good to have it before our official public meeting on the second day.

Finally, it would be good to organise a conference call for the coalition NEXT TUESDAY 7th SEPTEMBER at 15.00 UK / 16.00 CEST to discuss any outstanding issues and discuss how we want to present the Charter during our workshop, including identifying points for discussion. Please try and make it if you can, or let me know if you'd like to propose an alternative time.

Thanks and all the best,

From: Benedek, Wolfgang (wolfgang.benedek at uni-graz.at) [mailto:wolfgang.benedek at uni-graz.at]
Sent: 31 August 2010 14:57
To: Lisa Horner
Subject: Draft Internet Charter Rev. 31082010

Dear Lisa,

please find enclosed the Charter as revised in the light of the comments received.

Not all comments could be taken into account, either because of different views expressed or because it did not appear for me possible to incorporate the recommendations at this stage.

In particular, based on the comments and beyond I would have a few discussions points for Vilnius, as, in particular:

 1.  Name issue: should we call it the Charter for the Internet or Digital Communications?
 2.  How to better take mobile access to the internet into account?
 3.  Should we make reference to the work of regional human rights institutions and how to incorporate that work without jeopardizing the universality of the Charter?
 4.  Can we agree on a new human right to access?
 5.  In which way should we refer to the Millennium development goals, if at all?
 6.  How to deal with the issue of anonymity?
 7.  Who is the "owner" of the Charter?
 8.  Should we incorporate additional rights like freedom from slavery in the context of human trafficking and freedom of thought and conscience as well as religion on the internet acc. To Arts. 4 and 18 UDHR respectively.

Another issue would be whether and to what extend we put references or preferably to leave these to a commentary to be developed anyway.

I also see a lot of work to do in order to fully incorporate other initiatives like the Brasilian principles for the governance and use of the internet ( I started) and forth-coming legislation. Here it would be good if somebody from Brazil would read the Charter in order to see whether the ten principles are covered or if there is need to additions to take them more fully into account if they can be universally applied, which is not the case for all principles. I also see a lot of work to be done to check whether standards elaborated by the Council of Europe or UNESCO or interpretations developed by the Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights to Freedom of Opinion and Expression together with his regional fellow rapporteurs like the 10th Anniversary Joint Declaration on "Ten key challenges to freedom of expression and the next decade" can be taken into account in our interpretation of rights and principles for the universal level.

I would also suggest that we produce a text which is free from footnotes and references to the different sources, because in the meantime and in particular with the comments included, not all sources can be adequately identified and contributions recognized and the readability of the Charter may suffer or misunderstandings may be created. However, we should keep a version with sources and references for those who are interested to look into it.

Let me thank you once again for the very useful collation of comments which help me a lot in doing the revision. I would also have no problem if the coalition can have a final look before presented in Vilnius, but there should be a short deadline in order to be able to finalize the draft for Vilnius.

With regard to Vilnius, I think we should present the full draft maybe in an easy to read version, i.e. copied two pages on one and identified as a 1.0 draft with comments on the procedure so far and the envisaged way forward.

With kind regards,


PS: If you want to know more about my reasons, why I made certain changes based on the comments received, best would be to talk on the phone.

PPS: I just realized that 19d on effective participation on internet governance cannot remain like this as a reference to full and effective participation of developing countries does not fit into a human rights charter. We could inspire ourselves from the principles of the governance and use of the internet elaborated by the Internet Committee of Brazil and I have taken some language from there in making the changes. Taking the Brazil principles into account I have also added religious in net neutrality and another paragraph in fair trial, which could also get a headline later.

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Benedek
Institut f?r V?lkerrecht und Internationale Beziehungen
Karl-Franzens-Universit?t Graz
Universit?tsstra?e 15, A4
A-8010 Graz
Tel.: +43/316/380/3411
Fax: +43/316/380/9455

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