NINTH ANNUAL MEETING OF THE INTERNET GOVERNANCE FORUM 2014
"CONNECTING CONTINENTS FOR ENHANCED MULTI‑STAKEHOLDER INTERNET GOVERNANCE"
04 SEPTEMBER 2014
INTERNET RIGHTS AND PRINCIPLES DYNAMIC COALITION: THE IRPC CHARTER OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND PRINCIPLES FOR THE INTERNET: FIVE YEARS ON
This is the output of the real‑time captioning taken during the IGF 2014 Istanbul, Turkey, meetings. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the session, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Hello. Good afternoon, everyone. It's lovely to see you all here, at the Internet Rights and Principles Coalition's round table and meetings. We have two parts to our meeting today.
The first 45 minutes will be a panel of experts who are going to I think unofficially perhaps launch a review of the Charter of Human Rights and Principles of the Internet, because we are celebrating its five‑year anniversary. The charter began formally in 2009, with a crowd source drafting effort, and gradually wound its way through many versions, many debates, all of which are on our list archives, into the version you see today which is currently in five languages, with two more languages now officially under way, and we are very excited with our outcomes.
But of course, in the time since the Coalition itself began, which is 2008, and the Charter projects, we can call it, if you like, the net rights project, to encapsulate and articulate the connection between international human rights law and norms, soft and hard law, if you wish, and the whole Internet Governance discourse agenda setting and domain, the two things were very much in parallel.
We have been helped in this work by events some of which have been less than pleasant, but you can safely say that human rights for the online environment has come of age, at least in the last two years.
But before, we need to remember in this 45 minutes and the short meeting that will follow, which I hope you all can stay for, that the reason it is come of age is because it has been nurtured, the seed has been planted, watered and hopefully now harvested. Coming of age does not mean grown up. We are at an important and exciting milestone with lots of things happening.
I'm going to introduce the panelists, which includes one, two, three members of the draft expert drafting group, who put together all our various drafts at the end of 2010 to come up with this beautifully‑written, elegant, legally authoritative and aspirational document that is currently serving three purposes. It is raising awareness, it is educating, and providing policymakers and lawmakers dealing with case law and existing laws around the human rights for the online environment, providing valuable framework that is also linking to other frameworks that have been coming out, to think about the work we have ahead of us.
We have on my furthest right side Meryem Marzouki from Sorbonne University, who was a member of the committee, and it goes back to the beginning and roots of the Coalition. We have next to her Rikke Jorgensen, also member of the expert drafting group. On my left side, we have Dixie Hawtin, former chair, Co‑Chair of the Coalition. We have Robert Bodle on her left, who is currently the Co‑Chair of the Coalition along with myself. And we have our honoured guests from Amnesty International, Sebastian Schweda, the German section of Amnesty International, and Gabrielle Guillemin from article 19 in London.
They have kindly agreed to come and address certain textual, conceptual and legal aspects as they see it of the current version of the Charter.
We are going to do a little bit of close reading, just for a little while. Okay? Each member of the panel for the next section will choose a particular section of the Charter. You can find it online, if you wish to find it easy, WWW, I believe it is WWW.Internetrightsandprinciples.org. You can click on the .pdf if you want to follow mention of clauses.
We have lots of copies here, but not lots. We have some copies here. Thank you very much. I'd like to open, please, if I may, with Dixie Hawtin, who will need to leave us to join another exciting declaration that is linked to the Charter work, but has its own legs and relationship to its own region, the African Declaration.
But before Dixie leaves us, I'd love to start with Dixie.
>> DIXIE HAWTIN: Thank you, Marianne. I think five years of the Charter is really an amazing achievement. For anyone who was at the workshop on the first day, it was amazing to hear how many initiatives have come out of this work, how many initiatives that can be actually directly attributable to this work. I'm sure they will come up later today, but there is a Bill of Rights in New Zealand that is being looked at, that is coming out directly from the IRP. There is work at the Council of Europe on a Human Rights Guide for Internet Users, that comes directly out of the IRP.
And as Marianne mentioned, I have to go for a launch of an African Declaration of Internet Rights and Freedoms, and that one is really attempting to take this analysis that has been done about how international standards apply to the Internet environment, and turn it into a campaign for actual legal standards and for political support in the African region.
I wanted to reflect a little bit on a couple, well, I just reflected a little bit on some of the achievements of the last five years. And in the last year especially, with Marianne's and Robert's amazing work at having it translated and bringing it to new communities, and I wanted to bring my own reflections on what I think might be some of the next steps now, yeah.
So, the first, there is kind of two things which I think are really important. The first thing is outreach and campaigning around the Charter. It is really noticeable that every single IGF I've been to, I've met people from countries all around the world who should be our core constituents there, Civil Society activists who are in other stakeholder groups who are committed to human rights on the Internet, and who should be kind of aware of this work and using it.
It is a useful tool for them, and a lot of them come up to me and have come up to me and said, I wasn't aware of this. Why are we not aware of this? This is really useful material. This is useful work, and if I knew about this earlier, I wouldn't have had to do A, B, C, D, E analysis for myself.
I think that is one thing that we should really think about now, how do we kind of get in those skills around education and outreach and campaigning, to make sure that more people know about and can use the Charter in their work.
The second thing that came to me when I was reflecting on this last five years was an idea which we had at the beginning, and which had slightly fallen by the wayside, but which I think now might be a useful idea to reconsider.
The reason why I think it's a good idea is that we have this amazing document now, and we need to start thinking about implementation. We need to start thinking about how we can make sure that this isn't just aspirational ideas about what standards we want to see in the Internet environment, but we really need to think about how we can make sure that this is happening in reality, and that people's rights are being respected or that they are not being respected, that there is some kind of redress or some kind of mechanism.
So, I just remembered that at the beginning, when we were talking about this, we also talked about a second section of the document, which would go through each of the articles, and think about what are the responsibilities for different stakeholders groups, for different sections within different stakeholder groups under those articles, and breaking that down as much as we can, like not just saying businesses, but let's go social networking groups, let's say hardware developers, software coders, and what would actually then incorporating the declaration, the Charter into their work, actually mean for them.
And as part of that work, doing some of the analysis again of international law to work out what are things which they are actually required to do, and you know, human rights, governments and businesses both have international legal responsibilities under human rights standards, so kind of trying to identify what those are, and at the same time there are a lot of people in governments and many businesses who would like to go beyond that, and kind of play their part to shape this field in as positive and progressive manner as possible, so look at beyond what they legally are required to do, what could they do?
Let's give them ideas. Let's give the people working in the corporate social responsibility departments in these companies ideas about how they could actually push this agenda, what things could they be considering.
I think the Charter is an extremely useful starting point for that, because it's so broad. It is not just freedom of expression. It is not just privacy. It is not just network neutrality. But we are also looking at economic and social cultural rights. We are also looking at governance mechanisms which are necessary, and so by using this framework, we can be really comprehensive.
I'm really sorry I have to go, because I'm sure it's going to be a fascinating discussion. I hope that those ideas are useful. Thank you very much, Marianne, for doing such an incredible job.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Before Dixie goes, I'd like to extend a huge thank you to her. She has served on the Steering Committee after her term as Co‑Chair, and I omitted the fact that Dixie was also the editing, managing editor of the Charter text. She was part of the team. I'd like a large round of applause to Dixie, as she steps down from the Steering Committee to pursue other life paths.
I'd like to say thank you, Dixie. While you are here, we want to say thank you while you are here, not when you are not. Let's go.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: I think I can find the implementation file in one of my folders on my computer. We might bring it out and re‑address it. That was a very important beginning.
I'd like to move to Meryem.
>> MERYEM MARZOUKI: Thank you, Marianne. You know me, I don't like to follow the rules, and because things are being placed inside a frame, so I didn't pick up a single specific provision of the Charter.
But I would like rather to address the Charter as a whole. First of all, I would be tempted to say there is nothing to change in the Charter, because it is technologically neutral, and this is very important, that even with the development of maybe all other technologies, other services or other applications, the Charter as it is, is still applicable. This is a really good point about the Charter.
The second reason that for which I would say there is nothing to change is that, as Dixie also said, that it presents a really wholistic vision of human rights. It includes first generation, second generation, and even third generation rights with a right to development, which is something that we see very seldom including Civil Society discussion in the space of the IGF. So I'm very happy that there is a wholistic vision of human rights presented in the Charter.
But of course, it is not a perfect document. It is even far from perfect, and there is still a long way and a lot of work to do to improve it.
In particular, what I see as one of, an important weakness of the Charter as it is now in this version is that most of the provisions merely state or announces a given right, explain how it translates on the Internet, but it is very much similar to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in its form as it is whether declarative of a right.
And this was done on purpose for this version of the Charter as a first step. We needed to do this kind of first translation in the online environment, in the environment.
So to go ahead a little bit in comparison with the form of the UDHR, then we have the UDHR, then we have treaties, international conventions, and we have also national and regional regulations that are dealing with the specifics.
But in our case, with regard to the Charter, we don't have really implementation development yet, except as already mentioned, as a first step, the Council of Europe Guide for Internet Users. And in many aspects, it is probably much less declarative than the Charter.
So it's a good advance, in addition to the fact that this guide, this Council of Europe Guide on Human Rights of Internet Users, it's the first institutionalization process of the work done by a Dynamic Coalition here, the IGF.
So to summarize this point, I would say that we will need to provide practical answers to practical questions any Internet user might have, not simply individuals, but also groups, organisations, companies, whatever.
The second point in which the Charter could be improved is with regard to the right to remedies. And I know that we will talk more in detail about that, so I'm only mentioning this point. Rikke will talk more about that.
The third point is that since the intention is to greater extent to privately ordered space, the Charter does not in my opinion adequately target human rights also vis‑a‑vis private companies, vis‑a‑vis corporations.
And I think an independent next step we should use, like we used to use the Charter itself as a point of departure from next version, we probably should rely on the principle on business and human right, but I think this should constitute a good source for a revision of the Charter, especially with respect to this privately ordered specificity.
Finally, my final point on the improvement that could be made, is that a next version maybe should adequately address the issue of the conflicts of jurisdiction.
This issue has been around for more than 15 years. And it is still not resolved, as I said in another workshop this morning. First of all, if we consider, for instance, freedom of expression, there are conflicts of jurisdiction in different parts of the world, data protection and privacy, etcetera, etcetera.
And this is again, in my opinion, this issue of the conflict of jurisdiction is the main, the core issue that should be solved when we talk about Internet Governance.
So I will stop here, and there is a lot of work to do. Thank you.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Thank you, Meryem. And thank you for the work you also did at the time and continue to do, very important points.
I hope the full transcript can be made available, so that we can refer to it. We also have a live blog on Internetrightsandprinciples.org, which will give you a fairly faithful rendition of today's conversations, with our brilliant live blogger Catherine Easton. In case the live transcript goes down which has happened in the anonymity panel, you can refer to the live blog and get some idea to reflect on.
I'd like to turn to Rikke Jorgensen. Thank you very much. Did I say where you were based? The Danish Institute for Human Rights, is that correct? Thank you, also a member of the original drafting group.
>> RIKKE JORGENSEN: Thank you. Hello, everybody. Thanks for joining so late in the afternoon.
If we go back, I know in this session we are supposed to look forward, but in order to go forward, I want us to look back of it, and when this work was initiated and evolved five years ago, a lot of us were very concerned with translating existing well‑established human rights standards to an online context.
That was really the thing that a lot of people within this community were struggling with. We don't want new rights, but we want to have existing established human rights translated and understood within this new context.
Since then, a lot has happened. Notably, we have had several resolutions by the UN General Assembly that didn't exist back then.
And we have recently just a few months back a huge report by the UN High Commission on Human Rights on privacy and surveillance in the digital age.
Really, the way that human rights have now been translated to this context by various international organisations is completely different than when this work was started.
One of the things that I really have been thinking about for the past two days here, and also inspired by the session that you opened with, was it yesterday morning or the day before?
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Workshop 83, that was Tuesday morning.
>> RIKKE JORGENSEN: Tuesday morning, already two days ago, was that where I think the really interesting part is now, and where we need to move forward, is not any more so much the translation of human rights into a digital context, but it's much more the translation of these standards to a national level.
So the issues that people are struggling with in terms of using the guide and other competing documents in the national context, and I think the session on Tuesday gave a lot of examples of how it can be utilized by, in parliamentary processes, by Civil Society groups, being used in teaching curriculum around the world.
I think all these experiences from national level, how it feeds into advocacy or legislative proposals, or teaching at universities or primary schools, we need to make that much more visible and accessible within this platform, as something that people can really draw from the initial work that the Charter itself represents.
So that's also touching upon what Meryem said, on implementation, and making more visible and accessible these experiences, these struggles at national level. I think that is an important point as we move forward.
Then another important point that has already been mentioned is access to an effective remedy.
I was also partaking in the work done by Council of Europe on a guide on Internet users rights, that is a little bit similar to this project, but it's also a bit more narrow in scope because it's more European focused. It's a guide that is adopted by the 47 Council of Europe member states.
So it has Government's commitment to it, to a certain extent. It is very much based on case law from the European Corps of Human Rights.
One of the things we discussed in that work, and that we didn't discuss that much five years ago, was actually the issue of access to effective remedies, which is an established part of international human rights law.
But it doesn't figure very prominently in this work. I think that is another thing that we really, maybe the most important cross‑cutting theme that we need to develop as we move forward, because increasingly, I think that is what people are really occupied with in relation to these rights. The struggle is not so much more anymore whether there is a formal recognition of having these rights applying online, but rather a huge frustration that it's so difficult to enforce your rights, and the various institutions that you have to address or go through in enforcement, ranging from state, the states as the primary duty‑bearer with regard to human rights obligations, and then the whole private sector that plays a crucial role in the online sphere, and increasingly themselves also speaking to the human rights responsibility and tapping into that discussion and increasingly discussing what does access to an effective remedy apply in relation, or contain in relation to these rights in an Internet context.
I think that is one point where we really need to move forward. So that's a cross‑cutting theme.
Related to that is the role of business, the role of private sectors. The guidelines, as Meryem mentioned, is an important standard‑setting document that didn't exist five years ago either, that is really quite strong now.
We have actually just at my institute back home, the Danish Human Rights Institute, we have done an issue paper on the state responsibility vis‑a‑vis private companies, and how far can you take the state responsibility to protect human rights in terms of what they have to do with regard to companies.
So my time is out. I'll mention one last theme, and that is surveillance, also a bit underaddressed in the current version. Thank you.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Sorry to cut you off, Rikke, I really am. Surveillance, you are right, is indeed under, in most of our concerns, a new issue. However, the Charter did foresee surveillance as an issue, and we have addressed surveillance, however, cursorily. So I take that invitation certainly to heart myself. Rikke, you have suggested where the Charter ends, is where we next need to begin, clause 20, duties and responsibilities of power‑holders.
Moving on, we need to move on to our two guests. Just to recall at the start of this project, to articulate these concerns, and as we look at them five years on, we were at the time very concerned about the sort of work for the international human rights community, and in that regard we were thinking of human rights watch, Amnesty International's work, article 19, and NGOs who fight human rights defenders in the off‑line world. We know all too well online these things are just as pressing. I have a great pleasure in introducing a guest from the international human rights community as we understood it then, Sebastian Schweda from Amnesty International. Thank you for being with us. Forgive me in advance if I have to give you the 30‑second card.
>> SEBASTIAN SCHWEDA: Thank you very much. Thank you for the invitation. I really appreciate to be here today.
My talk will be about, because I decided to stick to the instructions, and get very much into the details of one specific provision, my talk will be about article 21, clause B. That is limitations on rights in the Charter, which in my view is one of the most central provisions of the Charter, because it basically concerns all rights enshrined in the IRP Charter, as they are all not guaranteed without limitation.
Of course, I will put a focus on a specific right or specific rights, article 9 and 8 ‑‑ article 8 and 9, privacy and data protection.
But it's very much like the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. There is just one single provision covering all human rights in terms of their susceptibility to limitations. And that is different from the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, for example, or the ICCPR.
Okay. So when it comes to the right to privacy, laid down in article 8, there is a specific clause when it comes to surveillance that I would like to mention, that is clause F.
That is the right to be free from arbitrary surveillance or interception particularly mentioned therein. Then there is a right to the protection of personal data in article 9, giving every person the right to control the collection and use of their personal data by others, and make them subject to an informed consent under clause B.
Also clause C requires the data processors to keep the collection of data to the minimum amount, and time necessary to delete them when they are no longer necessary. Lastly, clause D says that independent data protection authority should be established to monitor compliance with these rules.
In this regard, we have a basic set of rules, that is comparable to article 8 of the Charter on fundamental rights of the EU.
On the other hand, there is the right to security in article 3, and from the very wording, this right appears at first sight to be more of a restriction to other human rights than a proper right in itself.
So the right to security mentions a duty to protect against all forms of crime on using the Internet. But it cannot go beyond what is recognized in other human rights instruments.
So, article 3 is a right of its own, as the clauses A and B demonstrate. It is a human right that may be in conflict with other human rights of the Charter, and it provides specific rules on how to reconcile this, of the conflict between freedom and security basically.
If I were to make a proposal, or set of proposals on the difficult relationship between privacy rights and the right to security should be balanced in more detailed way, I would say first of all, articles 9 and 8 are already very specific. But there are of course some refinements that I think could be done, and that could really give this Charter a pioneer role in some respect.
I will present some details on this now. But I would like to clarify from the beginning that some important groundwork has already been done by others, which I think that can influence the further review of the Charter.
My first proposal on this I would like, would be to have a look at the international principles and the application of human rights to communication surveillance, also known as the unnecessary and proportionate principles.
I think they have certainly contributed to specify the particular principles and safeguards that need to apply when analyzing the law from a given surveillance mechanism.
I have a feeling that this work should get more attention also by legislators and decision‑makers. I would be happy to stay in contact with you on that.
Secondly, I would invite you to have a look at the African Declaration for Internet Rights and Freedoms that is being launched now. That is why Dixie Hawtin is not here.
The draft featured two long principles, one on privacy and the other one on surveillance, that sounded interesting to me. The final text only contains one principle on privacy and is very short, but is detailed in kind of an annex with more detailed explanations.
I thought they are very worth reading, particularly for one reason, because I think the Charter should clarify that mass surveillance can never be a proportionate measure, and will always amount to a violation of personal privacy and also right to personal data protection.
This is also the essence of the Pillay report on the privacy in the digital age which has been published in a couple of ‑‑ I have one minute left, okay.
That is a little bit more generous. The only target surveillance can be proportionate in the first place, and I think we should probably incorporate that in the Charter.
Secondly, I believe there is an urgent need to more clearly define the exceptions where surveillance or interference with these rights may be acceptable, and what could be a legitimate aim in this regard. If we think that the remaining conditions like necessity and proportionality are fulfilled, there can be legitimate aims like the fuzzy buzz words like national security, public safety, crime prevention, crime detection, investigation, prosecution, all this stuff.
As a first step I propose to include these terms in the Charter to clarify what in abstract terms can be legitimate aims for interference, hear what these terms are. And the next step would be to give definitions of these notions, so that we can know what is actually meant by the national security exception, for example.
I think this is a very most important one. And I think it should be recognized that this is a sensitive issue. It goes to the very heart of states' integrity. But there are, there is a need to define this more clearly I think also on an international level.
I think my time is more or less up. My last point would be, make the Charter a binding document for all actors involved, because if we are to apply a multistakeholder approach to Internet Governance, we may not leave these stakeholders with a leeway to decide how far their rights and duties go.
I'll leave it at that. Thank you.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Thanks very much. I see you have a text there. Would we be able to use the text of your intervention as part of our recordkeeping? Would that be okay? You send it to us and we put your text ‑‑ that is brilliant. Thank you. A binding document. Gosh, the sky is the limit.
Okay. I'd like to now move to Gabrielle Guillemin from article 19. Thank you very much, Gabrielle.
>> GABRIELLE GUILLEMIN: Thank you very much, Marianne. Thank you very much for inviting article 19 to the round table and giving us an opportunity to discuss the Charter with you today.
First of all, I'd like to express article 19's, how we share the views that have been expressed by Meryem, Rikke, about all the positive features of the Charter and the various plans to move this document forward, and in particular looking at implementation. I'll offer a couple of comments.
In particular, usually when you are looking at soft law or legal instruments such as the international covenants on civil and political rights, looking at implementation usually you are looking at a body that can monitor that implementation at international level. It is important that it's also taken into account at the national level, but I think it's consideration to bear in mind.
I think it's, the Charter is really a great endeavor, in that it's actually trying to cover all the different rights that are scattered around very different treaties under international law.
So, which means in looking at how they ought to be applied on a more practical level, it's obviously an even greater task. So here I'd like to point to a number of endeavors by a number of Civil Society organisations, and how to develop certain aspects of those rights that are in the Charter.
So I think Sebastian has already mentioned the necessary and proportionate principles, which explain how international human rights applies to the communication surveillance.
Other initiatives, article 19 worked with others to develop principles on how to balance freedom of expression and copyright in the digital age. There were a number of round tables and discussions today about how to develop a basic framework for intermediary liabilities.
I think moving forward there will be a lot of initiatives to draw from other people to work with in looking at how these rights can be implemented in practice.
Secondly, I would like to offer some comments in relation to the Charter itself, and perhaps make some suggestions to strengthen the Charter as an advocacy document.
Those suggestions are mainly twofold. On one hand, I think the language of the Charter should follow more closely in certain respects, but I'll come to that, the language of international instruments.
Secondly, I think it would be worth looking at reviewing the document for internal consistency and tightening up the language in places. What I'm going to be looking at very briefly now is the provisions that are related to the right to freedom of expression which is my area of expertise.
Looking at section 5, which lays out freedom of expression and information on the Internet, for instance, there is a section dealing with online protest. Article 19 is currently involved in work around international principles on the right to protest. We have a gathering with a number of experts around the world, and where we discovered that the term is hugely contested.
Although we can see that it's helpful to have this provision here, this is something which is actually not necessarily widely agreed on internationally, which may need to be revisited in light of further work in this area.
Secondly, in the same section on freedom of expression, there is a subsection about freedom from censorship. Here, obviously, as a free speech advocate, we want freedom of expression to be protected around the world. However, we know that freedom of expression is not an absolute right and can be limited.
So here, in that section, for me I see language which is not entirely clear. So for example, there is a reference to measures that are designed to intimidate Internet users, and immediately I think of cyber bullying which is an issue that comes up a lot in the digital space.
But in many countries, for instance, bullying is not an offense. So how is it, what kind of measures exactly are we talking about, especially if censorship is tolerated, so it's not clear necessarily where the censorship comes from. Are we talking about state? Are we talking about censorship by private users?
Further on, there is a reference to freedom from blocking and filtering. Again, I don't particularly like blocking at all, and in fact we are very much against mandatory filtering of Internet content. But when we look at international standards that have been developed in this area, such as the declaration on the suppression of the Internet by special mandates on freedom of expression, they do not say that blocking is never permissible. It is in fact permissible in narrow circumstances, for instance, in relation to child pornography.
But one of the crucial features is that it has to be ordered by a court. But it's not necessarily something you would get from reading the section in the Charter.
I will flag up a couple more areas that may be worth looking at. There is a section about freedom of online association and assembly. Again, there is a rights to form, join, meet or visit, assembly group or any association for any reason. Although it is true of course that if one can get access to Web sites, one question that springs to mind is what happens when it's Isis or some other terrorist group that is joining together, or some other form of organised crime, how do we deal with that.
That brings me to another point around the general clause on the limits on the various rights in the Charter, which I think may have been a simple oversight, but it refers to the various limits on international, which are any restriction must be provided by law pursuant to legitimate aim and be proportionate to that aim.
Unfortunately, provided by law does not feature in that section, which is a very crucial safeguard, because even though a measure may be clearly restrictive, measure may be clearly defined, what is really important is that it is provided by law as a guarantee against the abusive exercise of power.
So I'll stop here. But I hope that these suggestions will be useful in the further work around the Charter. Thank you.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Thank you, invaluable input. I wonder if there are any remote participants, any remote participation, anyone wanting to speak on remote?
Thank you. Just checking. I'd like to, briefly, there will be time for comments from the floor, we do want to do a little bit of wrapping up, summing up and a little bit of information about election of new officers.
Bear with us. Robert Bodle, any final comments, anything you want to focus on before we move to the next phase?
>> ROBERT BODLE: Thank you, Marianne. I'm very grateful for the contributions made already today.
I'm not a legal expert. I'm not a lawyer. So I'm very nervous about messing with the existing text, and I know great care was taken to trans code the UDHRs to the network digital sphere not to weaken existing rights and not going beyond existing rights.
My main interest is clause 8 or article 8, clause E, the right to anonymity and to use encryption, but also other aspects to the right to privacy. I want to touch on the point about technologically neutral, that we have achieved that kind of status.
I do see a tension with keeping up with potential violations that are based in technology, but also nervous about naming different specific technology, because then it wouldn't be technologically neutral.
So, I do notice there are some specific technologies that are listed here, and I wonder, I'd like to ask the experts whether, for example, at the top, digital signatures, user names, passwords, pin and Tan codes, if we want to keep that, or if we want to build upon it, or ‑‑
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: This is true. By the way, there are copies of the Charter at the front of the room. Some of you are probably wondering what we are referring to. Yes, this issue about naming particular tools and platforms that at the moment, at the time are very current, but of course quickly can become not so much obsolete but so last week. And that is a real issue. Caspar Bowden has been engaging in interesting debate on Twitter about the fact that the Charter is technologically neutral.
I for one said to him it isn't really, but it sort of is, but not in the way he understands it.
The question is, how do you encapsulate technological developments, without getting stuck into the time box that then makes you out of date as soon as the next tool is available.
Wondering briefly if there are any comments on the floor about that, or if any of the panel would like to comment? We are being confronted of course with as things were five years ago, Tan codes, pin, social ‑‑ global brand names. It might make us blush in a few years if we put them in our documents. I'm not sure. Any comments, about how to approach the need to stay current in the language, and yet not to be tied down to particular brand or generation of technology?
>> AUDIENCE: Hi, can you hear me? Excuse my bad voice. I'm Ronnie Coven, the acting director of the World Press Freedom Committee. I went to the Magna Carta session earlier today, to see how it relates to the Charter. I found that they don't really compete, since they seem not to have a text. The Charter has a virtue of existing, and I agree with 8/10ths of it, but I have problems with sections in particular of the Charter.
The first one is freedom of speech. You know the U.S. First Amendment objection, one person's robust generalization is another's hate speech, with dangerous cartoons of Mohammed, hate speech aside from one saying it's a good idea. I won't dwell on that well‑known debate. Most of you would undoubtedly see it as a perverse form of American exceptionalism, except to say that I wouldn't want to be in the position of saying, for example, that Germany shouldn't ban neo‑Nazi speech. The notion of a clear and present danger would justify a speech ban in that case.
The other problem that I have may be less obvious. It's over whether privacy is or should be a right. If it's a right, it's a perverse one. It's been used as a code word to stifle legitimate news reporting. The UK Government has had to decree a journalistic exception to data protection rules for that reason. The right, the controversial right to be forgotten, this is usually a right to privacy, it is causing no one dilemmas. But from a freedom of expression import, the right to privacy is not historical or traditional. Its origin is American. It was invented by the U.S. legal philosopher, Louis Brandeis, in a famous Harvard law review of the 19th century. There are a number of distinguished legal scholars who can in that context see the wisdom of what Brandeis actually called the right to be left alone.
Those are my two basic comments.
But some of the other earlier comments I thought were also very judicious.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Thanks, Ronnie. I appreciate, we all appreciate your input. Thank you very much. We have another comment. Time is flying. First there and then Charles. Could you please state your name and your affiliation for the record.
>> AUDIENCE: David Hughes, recording industry.
We have, to address the question that you asked to the floor, we have had this challenge in so many drafting sessions of the past couple of decades.
I think the answer is fairly obvious, or maybe it's not, and that is to describe the intention very clearly with the functionality and avoid reference to any specific technology.
It seems to me that every time we refer to a specific technology, we end up regretting it.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Point taken. Thank you.
>> AUDIENCE: Hello. Charles Neville. Exactly what David said. It's the only way to do it. And it is important to do that. Every time you put in an example, a huge proportion of your readers read that example as an exhaustive list. It's just, you cannot afford to helpfully give something, unfortunately.
There is a piece that I find difficult. I think in the right to remedy, there is a piece no one mentioned, which is about understanding what laws and remedies apply to you.
That is something I don't see very much in this discussion. But as a person living in a particular society with a particular set of rules and mores and conventions, I think there is an idea in my head that I expect to know what kind of laws are applicable to me.
That is really problematic in practice. Knowing who I'm dealing with is a part of it. I don't have a clearer explanation of it than that at the moment.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Thanks, Charles. Important point, the slogan, know your rights, is a great start. But know how to actually have your rights supported and protected is the next step; so education, education, education.
I'm afraid we are going to have to wrap this up a little bit, unless there are some burning comments from the floor about our discussion. We would like to keep it going.
We will be now ‑‑ please stay with us. It's not that boring. It's a meeting. I'm going to sum up briefly orally what we have achieved this year in light of the fascinating discussion. I'd like to thank all our panelists for spending their energy and time and focusing once again on the wording, and to give you all a sense of the kind of work that was done, can you imagine the sort of discussions that we have had and we all learned from.
At this point I'd like to segue to the formal opening of the face‑to‑face meet space, annual general meeting of the Internet Rights and Principles Coalition. I want to take two minutes to sum up orally. Robert and I will be putting on line a written report. This is what you need to do, so that people know what you have been doing.
The Dynamic Coalition is part of the IGF. They are at least in principle a constituent hub, or space where different players, actors and interested parties can come together to generate an entry, a space in the platform around a particular interest.
The Dynamic Coalitions themselves have a fluid existence. The Internet Rights and Principles Coalition through the Charter work has managed to sustain its efforts over five years in between many Internet Governance forums and other sorts of meetings.
The main output has been the Charter booklet, which allowed people to get hold of the Charter itself, which was the material we were addressing today in the context of the Coalition work and other issues. So we have managed to translate it into other languages and continue to do so.
But what we have discovered is that the booklet in its printed form has been an enormously helpful output, because it allows people to hang on to something. Some people want it digital. It is digital. It's all online, but many people want something next to their desk, tuck under their pillow at night maybe (chuckles) to actually have it to look at. And digital is good, but printed matter is also good of course. There are environmental issues.
We have discovered the booklet is an enormous success, and it continues to be. But the Coalition has also been working with outreach. It has been working with the Guide to Human Rights from the Council of Europe and other Dynamic Coalitions. We wish to keep that going.
Let me look at my list. So, the implementation, as you know from workshop 83, quickly, we have the Charter and the Coalition model of working with principles and consultation being brought directly into the political process in New Zealand by an Internet rights and freedom bill. We had the bill pass legislation in Brazil, a sister and companion project all along with key members of that initiative in the Steering Committee.
We have had the IG MENA campaign in the Middle East and North Africa region take an official looking version and translate that into graphic designs and language that ordinary people can actually connect with, because we are talking very much in legal institutional language.
It has been amazing work being done about it IG MENA Hivos projects. There is a lot of work we can do to make this material more accessible and still continue our detailed legal and expert driven discussions.
We sometimes forget not everybody can access the legal language we are speaking here. That has all been happening this year. We made a significant contribution to the NETMundial. Everybody made a significant contribution to the NETMundial consultations.
But we know for sure, as people have been telling us, that the human rights, Charter of Human Rights and Principles for the Internet and our ten principles which were distilled from the Charter have been formative part of the NETMundial document. I think that is fairly evident.
Just on a simple matter, we are nearly at 1,000 on Twitter. Woo hoo! We nearly reached four figures. This is significant I think. There are issues about what sort of social media we use. But the fact is that Internet Governance discussions and debates are increasingly on Twitter.
And we are excited with the sort of quality of the tweets and conversations we are having on it, so counting by numbers is not the only rate of success.
We are going to step forward. How is ‑‑ like any loose association, we have a governance structure. The governance structure has been for the last two or three years, since the Nairobi Internet Governance Forum, is to have a rotating Co‑Chairship, stated Co‑Chairship. The Co‑Chairs for two years they stand, elected, if not elected because if it's not contested, that is not strictly elected, but to be supported by a polling process online. We manage this every year.
I'm now stepping down after my two‑year tenure as Co‑Chair. Following the staggering I will sit on the Steering Committee as a former Co‑Chair. Robert Bodle has one more year to go.
We have Co‑Chair candidate, I believe, someone who may wish to stand. I'm not sure if they want to present their candidacy right now. But I'm now going to officially hand the meeting over to Robert Bodle, because my time is up.
>> ROBERT BODLE: Thank you so much, Marianne. I want to thank her for all her work for the last two years.
I'd like to thank the Steering Committee members. I'd like to thank all the participants on the listserv. I'd like to thank all friends of Internet rights and principles. We still have a lot of work to do. I think I'll close with a couple things I'd like to see, and then we should talk about maybe process.
Okay. We should talk about process first? Up to me, all right.
In the next week, we would like people to nominate themselves for the Steering Committee. We will put up a survey tool on the listserv. So join up with the listserv. And then we will also announce it on our Web site, to join the IRP and the Steering Committee, and we will have qualifications for that. Read your E‑mails. Respond to them. And get behind the Charter, and work with other Dynamic Coalitions under the IGF.
I'm excited. So that's part of the process. Then we will probably take three weeks to have the vote in. So that everyone can vote that is within the D.C., the Dynamic Coalition listserv.
We will get that up and we will send an announcement on the general list for that. I'm really excited about the growing the Internet Rights and Principles Coalition. This is a moment now to join this Coalition. It is really moving forward.
So a couple things, points of order. I'd like to thank the Power Party Movement of Turkey. I'd like to thank individuals like Birtu and Coach and Selin and others, and I want to announce that they have a workshop, IRPC with Freedom House and the Turkish Power Party tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m.
Online freedoms and access to information on line, we have a taking stock meeting tomorrow. We can raise issues, such as it looks like one of our workshops was edited quite severely on YouTube from an hour and a half to 18 minutes. We might raise that issue tomorrow, that perhaps our panel was censored.
I'm excited about building on projects out of the rights and principles that connect the responsibilities of platforms, e‑commerce, users' responsibilities and the role of intergovernmental organisations. I'm excited about building resources around the Internet Rights and Principles Charter, such as creating an index of supporting material for activists and for educators on each right on our Web site.
It would be multi‑media with textual, text‑based sources, videos, etcetera. I'm also interested in opportunities to monitor and research the impact of the Internet Rights and Principles Charter in different ways.
So, I think Marianne wants to say something, and maybe we can open it to the audience.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: I wanted to actually, in a new role, make a motion if I may.
There is a letter being circulated and drafted at the moment in what is called the best bits list. It is going around a number of lists and on the various social media, about what are the Dynamic Coalitions and related networks who come to the IGF, what is our position on IGF renewal. I put it to the floor.
Does this Coalition move to support and strengthen the IGF as a space for all sorts of people, interest groups, stakeholders to come together. Do we here in this room, we can check on line, support the move to a new and more particularly strengthen the IGF? Do we have any comments on that? I think we do already. Pranesh and ‑‑
>> ROBERT BODLE: Pranesh.
>> AUDIENCE: Actually not as much a comment as much as a question. What does renew actually mean? Renew for a further term? So far the terms have been five years. Renewal for a longer term than that? Or establishment as an ongoing body, without a particular time frame?
So for the strengthen, I completely agree, and I think the kind of mandate that is laid out in the Tunis agenda is something that should be strengthened towards. It already gives us a blueprint, and in a sense even highlights the clearinghouse kind of vision of the IGF, which was discussed in this very room prior to this workshop.
So, yes, to the latter part. But a question for the former about renewal.
>> ROBERT BODLE: Thank you for that. Do we have another comment in the back?
>> AUDIENCE: Yes, Andre, school of economics. Issue for clarification, in which way it's possible to join the Coalition, and how to do it with this, because I would like to support the Coalition. Thank you.
>> ROBERT BODLE: Any other comments from the audience? Yes.
>> AUDIENCE: Hi, Rachel. I wanted to ask about countries, organisations that have signed up to this Charter.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Signed up, we have endorsements at the back and on the Web site, you will see. This is, the work is wider than the Charter. We have many organisations that support the spirit of the Charter. But taking a strictly legal point of view, and that is why we had this discussion today, so of course are considering whether they want to endorse the Charter in its current form, but we do have endorsements. Signing up, we would like to see more. We know there are more.
If you have any suggestions, please let us know. Sorry, Robert. I have to get used to letting Robert do the chairing. (chuckles).
I'll manage, I'll manage! You know. I forgot to mention a very important thing for the record. The booklet production of the Turkish translation, the Arabic translation, and the fourth edition of the English Charter and the financing to allow us to complete the Spanish Charter booklet, Spanish Charter is already up on line, but the full booklet in Spanish, we already have Portuguese and Indonesia on the way. Money to support all the lovely blue books you are seeing here has been provided by Hivos International and by the WebWeWant campaign.
Our digital Magna Carta for the Internet that is here, we are happy to be working with the WebWeWant campaign. We look forward to synergies there. But without the structural funding, we could not have produced this many booklets. They are nearly all gone. The ones at the front and here are the last you are going to get hold of, I'm afraid, because all the rest of the Turkish ones are going to our colleagues here in Turkey. Thank you.
>> ROBERT BODLE: Any other matters of business within the Coalition that you would like to bring up or address?
All right. We are going to finish early. This has been a long week already. I want to thank everyone and their interest. I want to urge you to participate in any way you can on the listserv. Follow on Twitter, we will follow you back. Join us on Facebook. E‑mail us individually. We are just really excited about the participation that we have seen here in Turkey and the participation with all stakeholders within the IGF framework.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: 9:00 tomorrow morning, support activists in Turkey. Bring your coffee with you.
>> ROBERT BODLE: Good night.
>> ROBERT BODLE: Does everyone have a copy of the Charter? We have Turkish, we have got English, we have got Arabic.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: We have Charter copies here.
(session ends at 5:50)
This is the output of the real‑time captioning taken during the IGF 2014 Istanbul, Turkey, meetings. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the session, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.