[IRPCoalition] IRPC Submission to the Net Mundial Meeting

Lee W McKnight lmcknigh at syr.edu
Fri Mar 7 06:55:43 EET 2014

I will at least take the bait for a minute on network equality - Milton as you know, the 'network neutrality' aka open Internet regulatory/definitional/legal battles in the US are ongoing between the courts, FCC, and Congress; while the network equality phraseology in the IRPC efforts I think nicely sidestep that - sideshow? - with language that - we can at least state positively has not been tossed/circumscribed by US or other courts.

One might always debate language, but seeing as the IRPC language was worked through by many folks around the world over quite some time in the development of the Charter, it seems rather besides the point to suggest that it would have been better to insert phraseology which as noted have not passed legal muster in at least one nation - not once, but by now about 3 times. (If this were baseball, 3 strikes and you are...ready to try a different term and definition.)

From: irp-bounces at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org <irp-bounces at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org> on behalf of joy <joy at apc.org>
Sent: Thursday, March 6, 2014 9:24 PM
To: Milton L Mueller; irp at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org
Subject: Re: [IRPCoalition] IRPC Submission to the Net Mundial Meeting

Hi Milton :)
On 7/03/2014 1:41 a.m., Milton L Mueller wrote:

>One could: that is just a simple footnote (but i note below you feel
> these are well understood, so i guess that is not your main focus).
> The concept of social justice was perhaps framed in a US context
> most eloquently by Roosevelt i think as referring to: freedom from
> want, freedom from fear ......

Rooseveltian rhetoric is fine, it’s great to say that everyone should be free from fear and want, who could disagree? But how about giving me the footnote? Nothias tells me that it is something completely different, rooted in classical political economy, but those guys were talking about distributive justice ad never used the term ‘social justice.’ I’d also like to know what’s wrong with the word “justice” – that seems pretty important to me.
you said you felt the concepts well understood = therefore a footnote seems spurious - i need an emoticon for that
I like this, but doesn’t it overlap a bit with #1 and #2, and isn’t it clearly better than #2 because it avoids undefined and divisive language about social justice?
> .... you'll find this in the same documents that reference
> the concepts in 1-5: the universal declaration of human rights.
> I sense a philosphical objection to "social justice" :)

And that means you don’t have to deal with it? Is that what you are saying?
not at all - i am just saying i sense a philosophical objection - i take it from your non-denial that it is a philosophical objection - which is fine - therefore my response is to name it as such and deal with it philosohically
By the way UDHR does not contain the words ‘social justice.’
I said "concepts" :) - equality, non-discrimination, participation,
8) Network Equality
Everyone shall have universal and open access to the Internet’s content, free from discriminatory prioritisation, filtering or traffic control on commercial, political or other grounds.
This one is garbled, and it overreaches, and thereby sets itself up for rejection. It is not about “network equality” it is either about network neutrality or the right of network users to be treated equally (except that no one really wants to treat all network users equally). Not all content on the internet is open, some of it you have to pay for and some of it is shielded because you don’t have authorization to access it (e.g., my bank account). Is that a violation of this principle? What is “the Internet’s content”? “Discriminatory prioritization…on commercial, political or other grounds” might be interpreted to mean that network operators or end users could not discriminate against traffic tagged as spam, malware or viruses.
I notice there is not even an attempt to defend this one.
There are plenty of others on this list who might choose to answer - i was not attempting a wholesale response
9) Standards and Regulation
The Internet’s architecture, communication systems, and document and data formats shall be based on open standards that ensure complete interoperability, inclusion and equal opportunity for all.
“Complete interoperability” tips me off that whoever wrote this hasn’t worked with standards and standardization much. Are you saying that innovative protocols or services that don’t always work well with others are to be banned? How about IPv6, for example?
Again, no answer to these objections. The question about IPv6, which is incompatible with many applications and even with IPv4, demands an answer.
There are plenty of others on this list who can choose to answer - i was not attempting a wholesale response
What a mess. I simply don’t believe that this principle, especially the invocation of “multilateral” governance, has widespread consensus. I still don’t know what social justice means, but I do know how some people use the term as a code word for coercive redistributions of wealth.
> Ah - again, I sense a philosophical objection to social justice
> - well that is your prerogative of course.

OK, I understand you don’t want to engage with legitimate disagreement on that issue, but I want to know why you are invoking “multilateral” governance? That is a very loaded term in this environment. It can be defended, of course, but I suspect that there are lots of people other than me who don’t want to see that in there, or who will see its inclusion as a red line that will lead to the rejection of the whole package.
I am quite happy to acknowledge legitimate disagreement - you have your views: i respect them and like i said, that is your prerogative of course. I can also disagree - and acknowledge I don't have the bandwidth for engaging on in-depth philosohical arguements.

I did not invoke "multilateral" in this discussion - but please see Anriette's response on the governance list to the question of the definition of multi-lateral in the APC charter


-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org/cgi-bin/mailman/private/irp/attachments/20140307/f924644e/attachment.html>

More information about the IRP mailing list