[IRPCoalition] Meet the new IRP Co-Chair and Steering Comm members

Marianne Franklin m.i.franklin at gold.ac.uk
Thu Jan 2 13:21:42 EET 2014

Dear all

Happy 2014. Thank you Olivier for the positive vibes this early in the 
year too.

As preparations for the Brazil Meeting in April gather steam, a main 
agenda item and output is now clear; to produce a "global" set of 
Internet Governance principles.

Wolfgang Kleinwaechter, who has been undertaking a survey of all 
existing statements around IG Principles including those that include 
human rights and principles, has provided one comprehensive review of 
the year past and the year ahead in this respect (


At the end of this analysis, Wolfgang makes the following comment about 
the leading role the UDHR played historically in setting the frame for 
subsequent international human rights law: that it "would be good to 
have a similar document for the Internet, supported not only by the 
governments of the 193 UN member states but also by all the 
non-governmental stakeholders from the private sector as Google and 
Facebook, the technical community as ICANN and the IETF and civil 
society as APC and Human Rights Watch."

Point taken but for the fact that the IRP Charter already exists in this 
capacity. Its 21 clauses are explicitly - and elegantly - embedded in 
the UDHR and these subsequent treaties. It was the product of 
collaborative work, within the IGF setting to be sure, of individuals 
and organizations all mentioned in this comment. Government reps and IGO 
reps have been active as well in the Charter work. Endorsements by a 
range of actors are currently being gathered as the 2nd Edition of the 
Charter Booklet is ready to go public. We also have several translations 
in process so here there is a grassroots support level for the work.

But, Brazil is a so-called high level meeting and its outcomes will be 
symbolic and perhaps groundbreaking from an inter-governmental point of 
view (perhaps not but that remains to be seen). With more and more 
support for a human-rights based approach to IG in the wake of the 
Snowden revelations, it appears that we could be facing the embedding of 
a disconnect between this shift in mood, one that underscores the IRP 
Charter project after-the-fact, and the fact that these calls since 
Snowden are already encapsulated by the IRP Charter in its entirety.

Given this recognition that human rights online do matter (underscored 
too by initiatives such as the 13 Principles by PI, EFF, Access et al) 
do need protecting, what remains to be seen is whether all those 
concerned with making Brazil a success and based on the good parts of 
the IGF working model, the IRP Charter can be taken on board in a more 
explicit capacity. By this I mean that it is the document that is 
adopted and recognized in the fullest sense of the term ("legally 
non-binding high level principles"). This is because the IRP Charter 
remains the one document that already complies with these calls; from 
within the IGF community and further abroad in the UN, and technical 
community where high profile figures such as Tim Berners-Lee are calling 
for a global Bill of Digital Rights.

It would be a shame, and a mistake to my mind, for us to not to make use 
of the same sort of collaborative and creative energy within this list 
alone, and links to wider networks to promote the Charter for this role 
whilst supporting the Brazil Meeting aim to generate a broad sort of 
global consensus. We do not need to re-reinvent the wheel here.

What do people think?

On 01/01/2014 18:39, Olivier MJ Crepin-Leblond wrote:
> Thanks for these excellent news!
> I am thrilled to see such talent leading the IRP. May it go from
> strength to strength!
> Best wishes to you all for 2014.
> Olivier
> On 24/12/2013 17:54, IRPCoalition wrote:
>> Dear all
>> The election/endorsement process for the IRP Coalition's Steering
>> Committee is over (37 people took part with 86.5% support, 5.4%
>> against, and 8.1% abstaining). Thank you for the positive comments
>> about all we have achieved this year and also for the constructive
>> suggestions for the year to come. The new SC met last week so this
>> email is to formally re-introduce everyone to you all.
>> First up, our incoming co-Chair who will be serving with Marianne this
>> year. Robert has worked with the IRP since 2008, seeing the first
>> charter through, setting up and then assisting with the website and
>> social media efforts, and also supporting IRP events at the IGF
>> meetings. After being on the steering committee for the last few
>> years, championing the IRP in all capacities, he is happy to provide
>> continuity and support as co-chair of the IRP. Robert is excited about
>> growing participation in the coalition, ramping up dissemination of
>> the Charter in different engaging formats (socio-technical,
>> educational), and exploring new ways of integrating Human Rights in
>> Internet Governance at all levels. This work complements his teaching
>> and research as an engaged academic.
>> Next here are the SC members for 2014 (bio notes will be up on the
>> website shortly):
>> Co-Chairs
>> Marianne Franklin (New Zealand/UK)
>> Robert Bodle (USA)
>> Steering Committee
>> Rafik Dammak (Tunisia/Japan)
>> Catherine Easton (UK)
>> Dixie Hawtin (UK)
>> Matthias Kettemann (Austria)
>> Parminder Jeet Singh (India)
>> Carlos Affonso Pereira de Souza (Brazil)
>> Vik Szabados (Hungary)
>> Tapani Tarvainen (Finland)
>> We are all looking forward to a productive year for the protection and
>> enjoyment of human rights online - for everyone, everywhere.
>> Warm regards
>> MF/RB and the whole SC
>> www.internetrightsandprinciples.org
>> http://www.intgovforum.org/cms/dynamiccoalitions/72-ibr
>> @netrights
>> _______________________________________________
>> IRP mailing list
>> IRP at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org
>> http://lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/irp
> _______________________________________________
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Dr Marianne Franklin
Professor of Global Media and Politics
Convener: Global Media & Transnational Communications Program
Goldsmiths (University of London)
Department of Media & Communications
New Cross, London SE14 6NW
Tel: +44 20 7919 7072
<m.i.franklin at gold.ac.uk>
Co-Chair Internet Rights & Principles Coalition (UN IGF)

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