[IRPCoalition] [JNC - Forum] [bestbits] Time-sensitive: 24 hour sign on period for ITU Plenipot joint recommendations

parminder parminder.js at gmail.com
Wed Oct 22 07:04:46 EEST 2014

On Tuesday 21 October 2014 09:28 PM, Anne Jellema wrote:
> Thank you, Parminder for the thoughtful criticisms. We're aware that 
> different parts of civil society have well-founded reasons for holding 
> different opinions on the role of the ITU, and we fully respect these. 
> I was very pleased to see that JustNet has expressed its point of view 
> in its own proposals for the Plenipot, which I found interesting and 
> valuable.
> In that spirit, I would like to respond to a couple of your criticisms 
> of our statement that I think don't reflect an entirely accurate 
> reading of its content:
> - I think your claim that we are advocating unregulated free markets 
> is unfair, since we state twice: "Each country should retain 
> individual authority to regulate IP interconnection rates where 
> necessary and advisable in order to ensure universal service and 
> promote robust competition." The drafters include organisations that 
> have been on the forefront of the fight for stronger net neutrality 
> regulation at national and regional (EU) level.

No rational is offered why such work should be stopped at national and 
regional level, when almost in all major sectors, climate change, 
health, education, trade, IP and so on, we have global norms, principles 
and even treaties... If anything, the Internet is perhaps simply more 
'inherently' global than these sectoral issues. Leaving it to national 
level simply allows the US to enforce its norms and law on the global 
Internet, leaving the developing countries on a take it or leave it 
position, and the regional aspect allows plurilateral bodies of the rich 
OECD, EU, CoE and others controlled by the rich, like the Trans Pacific 
Partnership, to add a bit of their governance priorities to the global 
Internet, leaving the rest of the world high and dry. In my 
understanding, it is this 'rest of the world' whose interests we should 
be representing most. Therefore I really did not get the rational of the 
above statement - why also not do some global governance of the 
Internet, in addition to the required national and regional one (Do ask 
a Kenya or Philippines what leverage they really have today on the 
global Internet to which they are subject relentlessly. What basis 
exists for excepting developing countries to simply accept the status 
quo -- even more unthinkable being that civil society, in effect, 
proposes that they simply accept the status quo ) .
> - I don't agree that our statement fails to identify who should take 
> responsibility for resolving key IG challenges; proposes the 
> "withdrawal of all internet policy related agenda from the global 
> governance stage"; or fails to acknowledge any important role for the 
> ITU. We repeatedly stress the need for coordination and collaboration 
> among UN agencies (including the ITU) and multistakeholder bodies; and 
> refer several times to what we think are the ITU's critical roles in 
> addressing the huge challenges ahead.

Which are these mechanisms of coordination... And specifically, where 
would discussions and resolutions on issues like net neutrality 
frameworks (remember that the cross border aspect of NN was identified 
as a key global IG issue by a Council of Europe expert group), generally 
regulatory principles for IP based communication, or even basic 
discussions of the nature of personal data in the emerging economy 
(resource versus right) .... If you want to find a big series of 
Internet related issues that *have no current home* at any globally 
democratic forum, simply pick up the agenda over the last several years 
of the OECD's Committee on Information, computers and  communication 
policy (CICCP) and you will be astonished by the number of Internet 
specific policy issues. Where should they be resolved. And an 
appropriate resolution of these issues underlie the very basic paradigm 
of how the emerging Internet mediated society will be (1) structured, 
and (2) governance.  You say "I don't agree that our statement fails to 
identify who should take responsibility for resolving key IG 
challenges". Please let me know who do you propose takes responsibility 
for all the very impotant issues listed above - I mean, (2) at the 
global level, (2) in a democratic way.

It is this long term structural impact of your proposal that is what I 
find extremely dangerous.

BTW, as I mentioned above, so much of 'global' Internet issues get taken 
up today by the OECD's CICCP.... You proposal call for making ITU CWG-PP 
multistakeholder. Interesting, and I have asked this question often, I 
have never seen the civil society groups involved with OECD's CICCP work 
- which included a lot of those who have signed on this present ITU 
related statement - seek making the CICCP multistakeholder.... Would 
this not count as hypocrisy. I cannot understand why and how the agenda 
of this civil society group - proposing the present statement-  is 
almost completely aligned with what the status quo forces on the 
Internet want from the ITU PP or do not want.... How can we simply have 
no agenda to do something about say cyber security that the world, 
especially post Snowden, is so worried about, and just have one agenda, 
ITU, step back, dont do anything... That is what this statement is 
really about, a little ornamental language here or there not withstanding.


> That said, we agree that the reference to "ITU mission creep" was 
> poorly judged, and the entire para should be deleted as proposed by 
> Jeanette.
> I sincerely hope that a respectful and informed exchange of views can 
> continue among CSOs, along with the equally important effort to find 
> the common ground between differing positions.
> Best
> Anne
> On Tue, Oct 21, 2014 at 12:49 PM, Richard Hill <rhill at hill-a.ch 
> <mailto:rhill at hill-a.ch>> wrote:
>     I fully agree with Parminder's analysis and strongly support his
>     comments.
>     Best,
>     Richard
>         -----Original Message-----
>         *From:* Forum [mailto:forum-bounces at justnetcoalition.org
>         <mailto:forum-bounces at justnetcoalition.org>]*On Behalf Of
>         *parminder
>         *Sent:* mardi, 21. octobre 2014 12:47
>         *To:* bestbits at lists.bestbits.net
>         <mailto:bestbits at lists.bestbits.net>;
>         governance at lists.igcaucus.org
>         <mailto:governance at lists.igcaucus.org>;
>         forum at justnetcoalition.org
>         <mailto:forum at justnetcoalition.org>; IRP
>         *Subject:* Re: [JNC - Forum] [bestbits] Time-sensitive: 24
>         hour sign on period for ITU Plenipot joint recommendations
>         I have not had the chance to go into the long statement in
>         detail. However, what I see as its main refrain is bothersome.
>         It says yes there are many very important global Internet
>         policy issues, and then says that the ITU should not take them
>         up, but tells us nothing about who should take them up. This
>         becomes a recipe for, or at least, towards a political
>         governance free world, the kind one nowadays read about
>         frequently in the documents of the World Economic Forum (read
>         for instance its Global Redesign Initiative).
>         I am agnostic about whether ITU takes up at least some
>         important Internet policy issues at the global level or some
>         other democratic global body takes them up. However, it is not
>         tenable that they be just left hanging out there, which only
>         allows those who have the greatest default power on the
>         Internet, mostly the US based economic and political
>         establishment, to carry on consolidating their power. This
>         statement for me is simply an expression of support for the
>         Internet power status quo, and therefore I strongly oppose it.
>         To take a few examples (a more detailed critique will follow);
>         Perhaps the most disturbing part of the statement, from
>         developing countries viewpoint, is tha which sanctifies
>         unregulated global market models for global Internet
>         inter-connectivity.... This is a major reversal from the stand
>         of all developing countries and all progressive civil society
>         at the WSIS, where unfair global interconnection regimes was
>         one of the main 'development issues'. This statement seems to
>         close that issue by declaring that such things be best left to
>         free markets, with no regulatory framework, or even a
>         normative/ principles framework. In any case, it is not clear
>         how even working on the interconnection issue, an express
>         mandate for ITU from the WSIS is a 'mission creep' for the
>         ITU. It appears that there is not one thing that ITU can do in
>         2014 which will not be called a mission creep. In the
>         circumstances one thinks that the proponents of the statement
>         should be bold and just ask for the closing down of the ITU.
>         Further, the statement says that the ITU should not work
>         towards a treaty on cyber- security, an issue that has shaken
>         the world post Snowden. Just today I read an interview with
>         Snowden's colleague Laura Poitras about how  little has really
>         changed on the ground as far as mass surveillance by the five
>         eyes is concerned. What other than a treaty that reigns in the
>         conduct of the states in this regard can be a solution? Or
>         have we simply given up and are ready to allow the powerful to
>         do what they may? Alternatively, is there any other solution
>         being thought of? Civil society must answer these questions.
>         The statement seems to suggest that the first committee of the
>         UN Gen Assembly should keep doing the work on cyber security.
>         That is quite surprising becuase by all means, the first
>         committee’s work is much less participative (of other
>         stakeholders) than even of the ITU. So, what is the rationale
>         here, other than just to say ITU should not do it (we will see
>         when we have to stop even the first committee from doing it,
>         but right now the imperative is.... ). I am fine with the
>         first committee doing it, but remember that any effort towards
>         a cyber security treaty will require the expertise of ITU
>         which is the agency that has hitherto dealt with this issue.
>         Such an simply obstructionist attitude to global governance
>         bespeaks of a movement towards a very unequal, unfair and
>         unjust world. Progressive civil society must take note rather
>         than blindly signing on this rather dangerous statement.
>         The statement says, we should not begin working on a cyber
>         security treaty because there is no consensus on basic
>         concepts and principles in the area.... Is there a greater
>         consensus on the area of climate change, and so many other
>         areas. Do we just give up in these areas? if not, why in the
>         area of Internet governance? Consensus on concepts and
>         principles emerge as a part of a process towards development
>         of global principles and agreements and not a as a pre
>         condition of them. This is universally known. One can
>         understand why US wants to protect the status quo, but why
>         civil society?
>         Again, this is simply a statement for maintaining the Internet
>         power status quo... Dont do it at the ITU, but we wont tell
>         you where to do either.... Supporting this statement in my
>         view will simply be to support the global Internet status quo....
>         Yes, we need to reform the ITU, but seeking simple withdrawal
>         of all Internet policy related agenda from global governance
>         stage is very problematic. As this agenda is withdrawn from
>         the global stage, the dominant political and economic forces
>         get a free reign, and the little policy that needs to be made
>         is made at plurilateral forums like the OECD, or the
>         Trans-Pacific Partnership or TPP (seefor instance, just the
>         day before's news, http://infojustice.org/archives/33428, on
>         how TPP seeks to regulate global IP TV transmissions).
>         Such statements as this one simply clear the way for such rule
>         of the economically and politically powerful...
>         parminder
>         On Tuesday 21 October 2014 02:08 AM, Anne Jellema wrote:
>>         Dear colleagues
>>         As you know, a fluid working group was formed after the IGF
>>         to try to come up with joint recommendations for the ITU
>>         Plenipot. We produced the open letter on transparency and
>>         participation in the Plenipot process itself, which many of
>>         you signed (thank you!). Our second and harder task was to
>>         develop positions on some of the most important substantive
>>         issues before the conference. The output of this second phase
>>         of our work is a 7 page lobby document that is now available
>>         for endorsement for the next 24 hours at:
>>         http://bestbits.net/itu-plenipot-notes
>>         The fluid working group struggled to obtain the conference
>>         proposals on which to base our analysis and recommendations,
>>         both because of the ITU's restrictions on document access and
>>         because many Member States submitted their proposals quite
>>         late in the day. As a result, our drafting process has taken
>>         us hard up against the start of the Plenipot itself.
>>         It is now very urgent to get this text in front of
>>         delegations, so we are opening it for endorsements rather
>>         than comment. If however someone has a red flag, "absolutely
>>         can't live with it" issue that prevents them from signing on,
>>         they should email me personally in the next 24 hours to
>>         propose an edit(s) to resolve this issue, and I will consult
>>         the other members of the ITU fluid working group on whether
>>         to accept this edit.
>>         Due to the lack of time for comment and consensus, we are not
>>         presenting these recommendations in the name of Best Bits or
>>         on behalf of civil society in general but only on behalf of
>>         the specific organisations endorsing.
>>         If you would like your organisation to be listed, please send
>>         your logo to Carolina Rossini (crossini at publicknowledge.org
>>         <mailto:crossini at publicknowledge.org>) by 22:30 CET (16:30
>>         EST) tomorrow, 21 Oct.
>>         Best wishes
>>         Anne
>>         -- 
>>         Anne Jellema
>>         CEO
>>         +27 061 36 9352 (ZA)
>>         +1 202 684 6885 (US)
>>         @afjellema
>>         *
>>         *
>>         *World Wide Web Foundation | 1110 Vermont Ave NW, Suite 500,
>>         Washington DC, 20005, USA | www.webfoundation.org
>>         <http://www.webfoundation.org/> | Twitter: @webfoundation*
>>         ____________________________________________________________
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> -- 
> Anne Jellema
> +27 061 36 9352 (ZA)
> +1 202 684 6885 (US)
> @afjellema
> *
> *
> *World Wide Web Foundation | 1110 Vermont Ave NW, Suite 500, 
> Washington DC, 20005, USA | www.webfoundation.org 
> <http://www.webfoundation.org/> | Twitter: @webfoundation*
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