[IRPCoalition] [bestbits] Fwd: Re: OECD - what is going on? and what do you need to know?
parminder at itforchange.net
Fri Feb 5 14:35:00 EET 2016
On Friday 05 February 2016 05:08 PM, Lea Kaspar wrote:
> Hi Parminder - sorry for the delay in getting back to you -
> Admittedly, I don't have a very robust understanding of what's been
> going on in the OECD space, so I could be missing some crucial piece
> of the puzzle and appreciate the context you provided. But my comment
> is broader anyway. I disagree that you have to deploy a governance
> agenda in every advocacy effort you are a part of (which is how I
> understand what you're saying). If one thinks that making a short term
> gain on, say, cybersecurity, will be undermined by pushing a
> governance argument at that point, they may decide not to bring it up.
> I don't think this is contradictory at all, just shows that people
> have different priorities and strategies.
Please see my last email. It begins with "yes, Lea, that can be.." and
then it asks for a different thing, "But does there exist any plan of
the engaged civil society to tell the forthcoming OECD Ministerial that
the model of Internet policy making that they employ is really a
inter-governmental (pluri or multi lateral) one and not multistakeholder
one, and as such not really acceptable to civil society, even though we
may be working with you per force. "
This response would go for your current email as well. I can agree to
your point, but where is the answer to my question - by you, or any
other, since very big chunk of civil society - most major CS groups here
- are engaged with the OECD process ... Since I get no response, I take
it that the CS groups so engaged have no such plan.
Now, I repeat, my problem is not with dealing with specific issues at
times without necessarily always commenting on the larger governance
framework. All of us, including my group and networks, often do that. We
are very heavily focussed on specific policy issues, at least as much as
any other global CS group, both at global and national levels.
But I am sure you can see that I am specifically pointing on the lack of
symmetry between the attitude of these CS groups to UN processes and
Just till two months back, all these groups, including yours, were at
the UN, with respect to WSIS + 10 review... But why there, no 'such
concession' was given to let the governance model be, and focus on
substantive Internet policy issues, more and more of which are becoming
increasingly urgent to resolve. The very same issues at OECD become
important to engage with, but at WSIS we seem to suddenly be at a loss
to even agree that there are important Internet related policy issues
that need urgent focussed attention (the drama that unfolded with regard
to the CSTD WG on enhanced cooperation on this account, for instance)..
Why at the UN, the governance model becomes more important, but at OCED,
we want to focus on substantive issues ? Why when CS contributions to
the UN processes are so heavily loaded with comments and inputs on
'governance model' issue, we are hesitant to mention this aspect at the
OECD? When in fact it is so easy to do it by pointing to the hypocrisy
of OECD nations who speaking with a double tongue depending on whether
at the UN or the OCED. Why do we let go this excellent opportunity?
As for opportunities to do so, the forthcoming OECD ministerial on
Internet policy issues is exactly the right kind. It is the first
ministerial after the renamed and re-mandated, new Committee on Digital
Economy Policy... Although as I mentioned in my email to Tamir, and
referenced documents, it is only over 213-14 that the mandate was
changed, and proposals invited to suggest inputs on working methods -
and I understand none were given by this civil society (why did they not
ask it to become 'fully stakeholder' as they ask UN to) . Interesting,
in changing the mandate, language got added that this committee makes
policies 'through multistakeholder processes', and this happened in
2013-14, in open view of the CS, after proposals for inputs into mandate
framing were invited.... Why did the civil society groups use this
excellent opportunity to give their version of 'what multistakeholder
processes are' and insist on instituting such processes, or not use the
term in the mandate?
I think there are significant questions that the involved civil society
cannot escape from answering, as they have been. And I dont think an
excuse of focussing on issues rather than governance really works here.
> I can see how if you take governance as the underlying problem,
No, I equally deal both with governance methods and framework, and
specific issues. Even just one or the other, at times, as required and
opportune. But that still keeps my above questions fully valid, and
IMHO, necessary to answer for the OECD engaged civil society.
> you could argue that any policy-specific efforts that ignore
> governance issues will in the end be unsustainable. But A) some may
> disagree that governance is the underlying problem,
Maybe .. I know some groups you are so focussed on specific issues and
problems that they may be impatient about tackling governance issues,
which may even be fine... What I cant understand is how for the 'same
groups' , governance becomes the 'key' and prior issue when they are at
the UN, even at the expense of urgent specific policy issues, but the
orientation gets exactly reversed when at that club of rich,
resourceful, countries, the OECD... That still remains a question to
> and B) even it it was, it doesn't follow that all efforts that don't
> put it at the forefront of their agendas are at odds with it. Hope
> this clarifies the point I was trying to make.
You said that my 'assumption of contradiction seem like a non
sequitur'... Now that I have again explained what is the contradiction
that I am focussing on - not necessarily between working on specific
policy issues versus engaging with governance framework questions, but
flipping one's orientation between being at the UN and OECD - I hope you
do not still consider it a non sequitur, and even may have another
response to it.
> Best wishes,
> Sent from my iPhone
> On 28 Jan 2016, at 14:59, parminder <parminder at itforchange.net
> <mailto:parminder at itforchange.net>> wrote:
>> On Thursday 28 January 2016 06:48 PM, Lea Kaspar wrote:
>>> Hi Parminder, the assumption of the contradiction seem like a non
>>> sequitur. Why would interest to engage in a process like the OECD
>>> have to imply a normative endorsement of the status quo? Working
>>> with the system that we've currently got can go hand in hand with
>>> efforts to make the system as a whole better. Not to mention the
>>> value of damage control.
>> Yes Lea, that can be... But does there exist any plan of the engaged
>> civil society to tell the forthcoming OECD Ministerial that the model
>> of Internet policy making that they employ is really a
>> inter-governmental (pluri or multi lateral) one and not
>> multistakeholder one, and as such not really acceptable to civil
>> society, even though we may be working with you per force. And also
>> ask these governments how they brazenly run such a inter-gov policy
>> system when they criticise any similar effort by UN as being
>> distastefully inter-gov and multi-lateral, and say pious things like
>> that Internet is just not the kind of thing to be governed in an
>> inter-gov manner. Are we ready to make such a statement at the
>> Ministrial, while, ok, accepting your logic, not stopping to engage
>> with OECD's policy processes, in a 'damage control' way, as you put it?
>> All these civil society actors and groups were around in 2011 when
>> they shouted down India's Internet policy mechanism proposal which
>> was deliberately shaped exactly on the OECD's model as being
>> inter-gov and multilateral, and thus unthinkably bad, representing
>> the worst things that any human mind could ever come up with...
>> In fact, it is just 2-3 years ago that OECD's Committee on Digital
>> Economy was formed, morphed from the earlier committee on computers,
>> communication and information policy -- this happened much after the
>> civil society's raucous denouncement of India's UN proposal.... Did,
>> at that point when this committee was being formed, civil society
>> tell OECD that Internet cannot be governed in an inter gov manner,
>> and when they are forming this new committee thy should make it
>> genuinely multistakeholder.... No, no one spoke a word.... I am ready
>> to be told that I am wrong. To repeat, not one word was said, much
>> less a statement made. it was not that civil society asked for it,
>> and they were refused, whereby I may accept what you are saying...
>> They never uttered a single word.... Such is its pusillanimity in
>> front of the powerful, while the real job of civil society is to
>> challenge the most powerful.
>> And now, in preparation for the forthcoming Ministerial, when in the
>> civil society advisory group to OECD's committee, an odd voice
>> recently spoke about whether OECD's process is multistakeholder
>> enough, the general consensus was, leave that aside, lets focus on
>> substantive issues!!
>> When we are in a discussion about the global policy stage, suddenly
>> no one can even think of any important enough non ICANN-y
>> Internet-related public policy issues at all - we have spent years
>> wondering whether any or enough of such issues even exist. It is a
>> real joke!.. Just shift the scene, we are at the OECD, and such
>> policy issues roll out like no ones business - work in the Internet
>> age, sharing economy, economics of data, algorithmic economy, policy
>> implications of internet of things, big data and social profiling
>> ........... The list is unending. Civil society itself actively keeps
>> suggesting new policy areas and engaging with them.
>> People like Nick Ashton will actively argue at global forums like
>> this, that no, there is no need to have a separate Internet or
>> digital policies related body, and all such areas can very well be
>> dealt by policy bodies looking at respective impacted domains (work,
>> education, governance, etc) ... But no one tells OECD's Digital
>> Economy Policy Committee that it is superfluous when OECD has about
>> 50 other committees dealing with every possible area, where, by that
>> logic , specific issues of Internet impact could have been adequately
>> dealt with.
>> Lea, you really see nothing contradictory or amiss here!?
>>> Warm wishes,
>>> On Thu, Jan 28, 2016 at 1:13 PM, parminder
>>> <parminder at itforchange.net <mailto:parminder at itforchange.net>> wrote:
>>> On Thursday 28 January 2016 06:32 PM, Carlos Afonso wrote:
>>>> Grande Parm,
>>>> "Global IG civil society" as a monolithic bloc? Could you elaborate?
>>> Dear Carlos,
>>> Nice to hear from you!
>>> I should not have generalised. My apologies. But the civil
>>> society section that engages with OECD's Internet policy
>>> processes is really a pretty big part of the civil society
>>> groups dominant in the global IG space. So, my question may be
>>> taken just as being addressed to this quite big civil society
>>> section, vis a vis their apparently contradictory stand when
>>> they are at the OECD (the club of the rich countries) vis a vis
>>> when they are at the UN (a grouping of all countries) .
>>> best regards, parminder
>>>> fraternal regards
>>>> On 1/28/16 10:00, parminder wrote:
>>>>> Thanks Carolina for compiling this information.
>>>>> As global IG civil society preparesin full enthusiasm to participate in
>>>>> the OECD ministerial on digital economy policy, I would ask what has
>>>>> become my pet question...
>>>>> Why would you not support the same model of Internet policy making if
>>>>> all governments instead of just the 34 richest ones are involved, if the
>>>>> stakeholder participation processes remain exactly the same as with this
>>>>> OECD process? (And that would include your native country, Brazil.)
>>>>> I cant make it simpler.
>>>>> Can all this enthusiasm notbe considered a pro rich countries approach?
>>>>> Not something that behoves global civil society, which is supposed to be
>>>>> on the side of the weaker and marginalised, groups and people.
>>>>> On Thursday 28 January 2016 07:18 AM, Carolina Rossini wrote:
>>>>>> Hi all.
>>>>>> Today, we - at PK- have published a couple of short texts about what
>>>>>> is going on in preparation for the OECD Ministerial Meeting. The
>>>>>> Ministerial will take place in Cancun in June 2016.
>>>>>> We've also included information on how to participate. The most
>>>>>> important step is to become a member of CSISAC, the civil society
>>>>>> coalition that channels the participation and concerns of CS in the
>>>>>> Best, Carol
>>>>>> · OECD Sets the Scene for Future Decades of ICT Policy Development
>>>>>> · Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development
>>>>>> · OECD Ministerial Meetings
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