[IRP] Call for comments: DRAFT Version 1.1

Michael Gurstein gurstein
Wed Jan 5 20:59:56 EET 2011

My apologies for not being as attentive to this as I might have been.
I've now had a chance to take a look and I've made some fairly detailed
comments/suggestions in the attached.
I do have some more general comments though which concern the overall
document and process.
1. access/use/effective use--as many folks know I've been arguing this point
for a very long time and if anything, as we become more and more digitized
the issue of "effective
-or-effective-data-use-for-everyone/.> use" becomes more and more
relevant... I've made some suggested changes in the document...
For a more extended argument around this please see
or-effective-data-use-for-everyone/ and
The first of these blogposts went "viral" for a time after being tweeted by
Tim O'Reilly and commented on by Wired Magazine online and is currently
being assessed as the basis for an extended article in the New York Times
magazine.. It clearly hit something of a nerve among the digerati and using
that overall formulation might I think be a way to bridge support for our
document into the nether reaches of silicon valley's (mainly libertarian)
2. While the overall document is a very good and useful one it is clearly
insufficient when it comes to discussing particular specialized areas such
as e-health, e-government/e-governance, and so on.  There are a number of
groups who would likely be very sympathetic to our current effort who could
fill in those blanks with relative ease and my suggestion would be to
attemtp to link up with some them and either literally or figuratively look
to engage them in a wiki process where they could fill in the blanks from
their particular specialized area.
3. I'll be sending the document to some folks I know in the Indigenous
community.  As most of you know the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous
Peoples has now (finally) been signed by Canada and the US and overall come
into force (pardon for any mistakes here in the terminology or legalisms
involved).  From my experience Indigenous peoples are among the marginalized
groups who have benefited the most from using the Internet and I think there
should be special attention paid to this in the document and in light of the
recent Declaration.  (I'll be getting back with comments as and when I
receive them...
4. arguably our area of discussion has become one of the most important
public policy issue areas globally in the last several months with the
coming into prominence of Wikileaks. I'm not exactly sure what that means
for this document but we should be aware that we are launching it into a
very active and fraught environment and one moreover where there is a clear
conceptual and leadership vacuum from a global human rights perspective.  I
think we should be very cognizant of this and undertake our future
discussions and the ultimate launch/circulation of this document (and even
possibly a delay to review the document in the light of what has been
stirred up by Wikileaks) in full awareness of this dramatically modified
media and policy/political environment.  There are risks but I would think
those are outweighed by the opportunities but given this we really should be
making sure to the degree possible that we get the document and the strategy
for its launch etc. right.
Best to all for the new year,

-----Original Message-----
From: irp-bounces at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org
[mailto:irp-bounces at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org] On Behalf Of
Dixie Hawtin
Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2011 7:19 AM
To: 'IRP'
Subject: [IRP] Call for comments: DRAFT Version 1.1

Hi all,


I hope everyone has enjoyed their holidays and I wish to all a very happy


This is just a brief reminder that if you have any comments on the DRAFT
Version 1.1 please send them through by January 8th! DRAFT Version 1.1  can
be accessed at the first link on this page:


Also, there has been much difficulty in reaching an approach to filtering
and blocking which everyone can agree on. Lisa and I have had an in-depth
look through the discussion to date and would like to propose the following:


Under Freedom of Expression we should exchange the current clause on freedom
from blocking and filtering to:

"Blocking and filtering systems which aim to prevent access to content and
are not end-user controlled are a form of prior censorship and cannot be

(Please note, this language in inspired by the Joint Statement on Wikileaks
by the UN and IAHCR Special Rapporteurs on freedom of expression, which is
very clear and effective).


Then, following Meryems suggestion, we do not need to address filtering for
technical functioning here. Instead, under Security of the Internet, the
provision should be changed to the following:

"Everyone has the right to enjoy secure connections to and on the Internet.
This includes protection from services and protocols that threaten the
technical functioning of the Internet, such as viruses and malware."

(Please note, in the discussions some people were keen to stress that the
role of addressing viruses and malware belongs to ISPs and not to
Governments. The Charter is supposed to be actor neutral, but this kind of
information can go in the accompanying explanatory document.)


I think this wording addresses the discussions we have been having much
better than the wording in the DRAFT Version 1.1 so I propose that we use
this wording unless anyone has any major objections? 


All the best,



Dixie Hawtin

Researcher Global Partners and Associates

338 City Road, London, EC1V 2PY, UK

Office: + 44 207 239 8251     Mobile: +44 7769 181 556

 <mailto:lisa at global-partners.co.uk> dixie at global-partners.co.uk
<http://www.global-partners.co.uk/> www.global-partners.co.uk 


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