[IRP] Problem of abject poverty and hunger (was Re: Call notes...)

Norbert Bollow nb
Thu Aug 11 11:36:06 EEST 2011

Tapani Tarvainen <tapani.tarvainen at effi.org> wrote:

> I thought this list was about Internet Rights and Principles,
> where development agenda of any kind is not primary at all,
> certainly not more so than many other IG issues.

Hmm... I would argue that internet rights and principles are not
important in and of themselves in some ideological way, but they're
important because of their importance for fundamental human rights
and needs.

We cannot engage with every specific local and temporary situation,
as it's impossible to achieve anything unless there is focus on
something, and this coalition has chosen to focus on the "big
picture" aspect of rights and principles. That is good. But in our
focus on this, I believe we still need to be informed by actually
engaging, in some genuine way, with the important problems that
internet rights and principles can contribute to solving.

ICT can potentially be used to make some of those who are rich and
powerful today even more rich and powerful, while exploiting everyone
else and increasing poverty and hunger as a side effect. On the other
hand, ICT can also potentially be used to empower those who today
live in unacceptable conditions to truly satisfactory economic and
spiritual development. How can humanity choose the latter path of
development over the former? By means of wisely choosing and
establishing the right Internet Rights and Principles!


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