The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Tenth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in João Pessoa, Brazil, from 10 to 13 November 2015. 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 event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
>> EDMON CHUNG: So good morning everyone. We're still missing one of my speakers. We want to try to get things started. But looking at the time now, why don't we get under way and hopefully Andrew will join us momentarily.
My name is Edmon Chung. And this is intended as kind of a roundtable. It's a pretty open topic. And feel free to come up to the table.
So just to get things started, I guess, this is a topic that I've been very interested in. And of course those who know me might find it a bit strange. I focus a lot more on domain names and internationalized domain names per se, and a lot of the thinking that comes through, comes from of course the background and participation at ICANN, what we call a multistakeholder approach at this point. And this is the session in the last couple years, especially with the background also coming from Hong Kong, I'm sure you might have recognized, realized on the news that we are going through, you know, from the Hong Kong side, we're going through a lot of Constitutional reform discussions, in terms of politics and how we organise the decision making in society.
So at the crux of what I really want to talk about is the multistakeholder approach that we call, in Internet governance, no matter whether it's at ICANN or IETF or here at IGF, how does that relate to Democracy and is what we call themultistakeholder approach Democratic at all? And whether we want it to be Democratic.
But before that, I wanted to take a little excursion from my bit of the story that led me to this discussion. Really, as mentioned, there is a big push right now in Hong Kong, I guess a popular movement, to try to bring Democracy into Hong Kong. One of the very interesting things about the Parliament or the legislature in Hong Kong is that it's quasi a multistakeholder approach, if you will. Those who are working in the space in Hong Kong would really kill me for saying that. But, in reality, it's one of the very unique legislatures where half of the members are elected by geographical constituencies. And the other half is elected by what is called functional constituencies. So you have retailers, you have IT professionals having a seat at the legislature. You have medical professionals being elected, having a seat at the legislature. Is this the kind of multistakeholder thing that we want?
In the Hong Kong experience, though, I can tell you, it's probably a bad, the worst, and the really ugly in that case, because you're talking much more about interests, commercial interests and directly in the legislature.
But the question is, still remains, you know, when we talk about multistakeholder approach, how do we gauge or how do we think about it, whether it's Democratic or not? And, of course, that's also informed by a lot of the discussion in terms of Internet governance, but also where we are in Hong Kong, and our proximity to China and the more restrictive regime that is there.
So that is a big background from where my deliberations are. And the start of the story, of course, comes from the proclamation of, well, the view of history, that was in 1989 when the Berlin wall fell. But more than 25 years later now we're actually seeing a very different world. At that time, I guess, you know, the reason why Francis Fukuyama said that, he thought that Democracy was going to be there. But if you look back at it, look at the Ukraine and how it, I guess, quote unquote,regressed, and some of the things regressed. And if you look at even the Arab Spring and where we are, well from then you tend to have this optimism a few years ago about the fourth wave of democracy. But actually, today, looking at it, and this is a book and an Article from the economist that says what has gone wrong with Democracy? And this ten or so years, we have seen a lot of backtracking on Democracy itself. And there are many reasons, and you know these are a few things that really are challenging what we call Democracy today. You know, the market failures and bailouts, the welfare demands, campaign financing. These are just some of the issues. And there are, of course, many theories of why Democracy fails and what the prerequisites are, the economic condition, the strength of the bureaucracy, the cultural rule of law. These are the things that we tend to.
But the question remains, when you try to go into kind of a revolution -- and of course I go back to the Hong Kong background that I am with, even if we are so successful, and this is one of the success cases in Myanmar that is happening now, if we get the vote, the question is: Then what? Right?
A lot of times, even when we do get the vote and do get the Democracy, the question becomes: Then what? Because there are other challenges as well. Just because you can elect, you can have a vote, elect leaders, does that really mean you have Democracy? And dictatorial Democracy, one interesting thing that people talked about, and authoritarian nonDemocracy, isclaiming a very legitimate regime at this point.
So all in all, I think besides the multistakeholder approach that we talk about at Internet governance, I also want to see how that informs actually the larger discussion about the Democracy itself. And the reason why I call what I'm talking about Democracy 3.0 is look at kind of the defining as Democracy 1.0, the people's revolutions of the U.S. and the French, as Democracy 1.0, which is what we have right now. We talk about constituency, we talk about representative, and voting being a big part of the Democracy concepts. But that, you know, now turning to the Internet and Internet Governance, one of the things that I think it was Vint that said it, and I like very much, is he used to like to say that the Internet is kind of like a mirror of society. So is Internet Governance also a mirror of the society?
The question then, what the mirror does is twofold. One, it allows you to see it more clearly what society actually is, because you can see behind you and next to you. It also allows you to twist the mirror a bit and see it in a different light. And that's what the Internet -- I think what the Internet is doing.
And the other thing is, even though the Internet is kind of a mirror, one of the things we need to attend to, need to understand, is that the space and time warp of the Internet changes the behavior of people online as well. And that's part of what we call Internet -- that's part of what Internet Governance needs to touch on as well.
And here's a few, hopefully, fun examples that I would want to see how the Internet kind of weaves through political things as well. This is Obama at the inauguration ceremony in 2009 when he was first elected. That was premobile Internet. And four years later, at the same inauguration ceremony, this is how it looked. This is how Internet is changing the time and space that we experience.
The other thing is Obama -- and I did look at the history of the election slogan, Obama is the first President that is elected on a slogan that has only one word. One of the things about the Internet is that it's condensing everything that we experience. And change. And of course the next one is forward. Just a one word campaign slogan, and he is the first -- you can't go further. Maybe the next one will be one letter or an emoticon. But those are things that the Internet changes as well. And it's interesting to think about. And this is also mimicked at one of the very successful people campaigns in Hong Kong, where it reduced -- the whole message reduced to a sign, a hand sign of a cross, a note, to national education, actually.
And this is also something that, you know, in the -- when further on, in the umbrella movement, it gets crystallized into a particular symbol. And that's part of the Internet. The symbol of hands up, don't shoot.
The other thing about the Internet is that the mimicking effect happens almost instantaneously. You see the hands upmovement. That gets copied quickly in other places.
So that brings me to the thinking about when you think about the state of Democracy, and the state of Internet and Internet Governance, I think it's a two-way street. They inform each other. And we have kind of, in some ways, not in a bad way, in a good way, that they are very much interlinked. And so moving into the actual deliberations and decision processes, one thing that is often interesting is that you have people who say: My representative actually doesn't speak for me. And then you hear people say: Don't let other people speak for you. Just vote. What is the -- you know, the gap there is very interesting. Because what I call Democracy 2.0, which is election of certain representatives that actually speak for you,cannot resolve these two questions. In one place you have people saying the representative does speak for me. On the other hand, the only way for you to speak up is just to vote up another representative for you, who doesn't speak for you after all.
So that is the current situation. And of course we have different election methodologies and stuff. And, of course, you know, constituencies are traditionally defined in geographic constituencies for political constructs.
And, of course, there has been challenges about whether geographic constituencies are relevant anymore. Because in the past that was a necessary -- because the technology wasn't there. It's hard for people to deliberate over a vast geographic region, therefore geographical areas make sense. Of course there are problems, gerimandering, and I won't go into that. But the question is whether geographic constituencies work or can be Democratic. This is where a multistakeholder approach may inform is universal service. And this is the heart of the discussion that I'm hoping to spark. Look at ICANN, IETF, IANA, or the coordination transition group, we have representatives elected from different constituencies that form Committees that make different decisions. Is this a form of Democracy at all? That's why we call it the multistakeholder approach, to prevent ourselves or to avoid ourselves talking about it being a Democracy.
And, of course, the problem with the multistakeholder approach, a lot of the criticism about it is that these constituencies are nonDemocratic because you're actually electing lobbyists, or who are supposed to be lobbyists, now they are in the Councils or the Committees. But is that a good thing or a bad thing? We might want to think about this.
All of this, I'll turn to the experts here about it. It's not just in a world that we're experimenting with this. I think this are other concepts, like liquid Democracy. I won't go into it, but that is challenging what we think about constituencies. That is also challenging about what we think about activists and how they might -- or lobbyists and how they might play a more direct role in how we make decisions. So voting is just one thing. How we deliberate things and how we actually come up to decisions is a very important other aspect.
Finally, at the end of the day, when we choose representatives, we are challenged I guess with the Internet, we're challenged with a question of who -- what type of leaders do we want? Is it still the, you know, in the old case where in the village or in the town you elect a particular representative to go to the Senate or the Parliament to fight for your village, is that still the kind of model that we're thinking about? Perhaps not. And in terms of the elections, another very interesting thing happens, it's not just happening in the US or other places where we have a Democratic election. Look at the GNSO Council election recently at ICANN. The polarization is, you know, pretty obvious. As we go through multiple rounds of elections, and actually -- it actually polarizes the society a bit, and what is supposed to be a distribution, changes. And this is a graphical depiction of the US situation with two particular parties and over time the elections, you can actually split the population a little bit.
And so we talk about in Internet Governance, we like to think about rough consensus and running code. I like to think about whether, you know, these are models where we are actually, similar to what we call the people's will or the social contract, are these emerging things actually replacing those kind of concepts? And if you look at how the Internet works today, it's kind of -- obviously it's based on running code, but that's kind of the social contract that we got into when we sign on to the Internet.
And beyond that, one other interesting thing that I pick up is that beyond voting, both the ICANN and IETF has what is called the nomination Committee that deliberates on selection of certain board members and certain people into the Committee. And what is more interesting is the IETF, which has a random selection process into the NomComm, which is kind of like deliberative Democracy, which I'll hand over to Jim shortly.
But the point of what we call the multistakeholder approach are here and what is being experimented at ICANN, IETF, at IGF, they have interrelations with the political development in the world as well. And that's one of the things that I like to bring about.
In terms of vote, I actually bring about -- I won't spend too much time. But one of the thought experiments that I threw out in some of the writings that I made is that instead of voting for the person you like, what if the process allows you to vote for one person that you least like on a ballot sheet. What would that do to the result of an election? We always think about ultimately we choose a President, we choose a one-person seat. And then you still have to have voting and still have some sort of majority. But if you think about it, if you do a counter poll, if you vote against somebody, the guy who is most likely -- let's say he has 51 percent of people supporting him, he still might not be able to win. And that is interesting. Of course this is not a mature concept of actually going to vote our next President. But I think this is a thought experiment that would be interesting for the future.
And it all boils down to what kind of leaders we want in this type of scenarios, in Internet Governance or in the society we have going in the future, informed by the Internet. Is it the strong leaders? There are more and more documents that are talking about -- they might not be as effective as a more cooperative leader.
And with that, I guess, it comes to the main discussion, which is: Is what we call a multistakeholder model Democratic at all? Can it be more Democratic? But even more important, should it be more Democratic? Maybe we don't want it to be Democratic in the sense of what I call Democracy 2.0. And in that case maybe we need to redefine what we call Democratic. And of course there is the constituencies. How do you define constituency? What do we think about representation and of course between that what is accountability? So that is the background of what we want to talk about.
And I have a few people that will get the discussion started. I'm happy to have James Fishkin, Professor James Fishkin,here, who is the front expert on deliberative Democracy.
Julia Reda from the Pirate Party in Germany, expert in liquid Democracy. And Avri Doria, expert in Internet Governance in general, ICANN, IGF, IETF. Everything.
And, of course, similarly, Andrew.
So I'll pass over to Jim first, to perhaps talk a bit about the deliberative Democracy and maybe some of the experiments that were done here as well, and then to Julia and the others.
>> JAMES FISHKIN: Great. How much time do I have? 12 minutes? Well, I have 12 minutes, so Ii'll talk very fast.
So I have developed over the last few decades a model that I call deliberative polling. The idea is to take random samples of the public, bring them together under good conditions to think in-depth about an issue for hours, days, and sometimes we do this virtually online. We have really benefited from Google Hangouts but also face-to-face, if we can actually transport people.
We have done, as you see, 23 countries. We're now doing this actively in Africa, Uganda, Tanzania, Ghana, and soon Senegal. We're doing this -- we have done this in many Developed Countries. We have done this in Latin America, Asia, I'll mention a few cases. But let me just say the basic idea, because we just reported a few minutes ago on a pilot that we did on Internet Governance issues at the IGF. But the basic idea is normally most people -- let me talk about the mass public first and then I'll talk about the special population here. Normally most people do not become deeply engaged in thinking about Public Policy issues. Social scientists have a term for this. They call it rationale ignorance. If I've got one vote in thousands or millions, why should I pay a lot of attention? My individual voice won't matter and I've got other things to do. So it becomes a rationale to be ignorant in the sense of not investing a lot of time, unless you have strange prefaces or you're a policy junky or things like that. They find other things more amusing.
And were that it were otherwise? And polls reflect, even well done polls that have good samples, reflect the top of the head impressions of sound bites and headlines of the public. So the method that we employ. We take a good sample, and then we first give it a survey. And then we take a good sample and we engage it in hours or days of in-depth deliberation. The idea is what would the people think under good conditions for thinking about it? So there are thousands of polls that show what people are thinking when they are not thinking. These are intended to show what the people would think if they really were engaged. So we have an advisory process to develop the materials, pros and con, various policy options, and then we use that as a basis for moderated small group discussion, plenary sessions with competing experts, et cetera, et cetera.
Let me just move along here. We did this statewide in California and it was part of a process that led to some initiative reforms. We're doing this in China, actively. There was recently a project in District of -- sub District of Shanghai, in fact, that is Zhabei township, where it was used for budget and infrastructure decisions. It's been replicated around China. It's been approved by the 11th Congress as a fruitful form of Democracy. So the Center for Democracy website at Stanford, it's on there.
That's the European Parliament in Brussels. But those are not the members of the European Parliament. That's a sample of the European people brought, chosen by TNS, who do the Euro barometer and who is an excellent sample of the entire European Union. And filing the Parliament, and deliberating for a long weekend about issues about the future of the EU, we have done that twice on European issues. There is a special issue of European Union politics about the results of that. You'll find the links on our website. Very credible in the sense that could the people of Europe talk to each other? We had simultaneous translation. We were prepared for 22 languages. We only used 21, because the Irish all wanted to speak English. But we were prepared for everything.
This is not -- now, the idea goes back to ancient Athens. That is a photo that I took in the museum of the forum in Athens of a part of what is called the Klero Tarion. You think of Athens as the home of Assembly and Democracy. But that is a machine for random selection. Or that is the remaining half of a machine for random selection where they strictly randomly selected 500 people for the Council of 500 and they met to select the agenda for what could be voted on at the Assembly. And they had a number of other institutions built around the same concept, a deliberating micro chasm chosen by a random sampling.
And we took that back for candidate selection in June 2006. So Financial Times or somebody wrote it up that Athenian Democracy returns after 2400 years. We have done it in America on national broadcasts. We have done it in Japan. That is on the issue.
We did it on pension reform in Japan, where the Government was thinking about privatizing the pension system. You know Japan is very old. And before deliberation, the support for the privatization was almost 70 percent. But when people reallydeliberated in depth, it fell to 35 percent. And, instead, the people went to support a rise in the consumption taxes that would fund the Government pension system. And that is what the Government ended up doing. Both the DPJ and the LPG Government. So it was a consideration.
So we have done a lot of projects in Japan. Energy. In Northern Ireland we have done it with Protestants and Catholics deliberating about schools. We have done it successfully. We have done it in Bulgaria on policies towards the Roma who are discriminated against. And we are writing it up now because we think this project was part of the process that led to the desegregation of the schools, because the Roma children are now going to school with everybody else. At the time that we did this, they had their own separate schools in the Roma language rather than the Bulgarian language. And now they are in the same school system as everybody else. So there was actually support after deliberation for bussing the children into the regular schools. And given the virulence of the discrimination, it was remarkable.
I don't know how much time I've got, but just a few minutes ago we reported on a pilot deliberative poll that we did at the IGF. The premise was that the IGF community is a relevant community. We normally do the people. The ordinary people. We don't do expert communities. But people thought for the problem of multistakeholder governance, it would be interesting to pilot the idea of a deliberative poll with the IGF community.
And so people said well, you can't do this, because the IGF people are experts. So they know so much they won't learn anything, they won't change and they wouldn't feel free to act as Neticents because they will act under instruction.
All three were wrong. And the summary of it is that it was a relatively small pilot. But still large enough that we got a lot of statistically significant changes in the results. The reason you'd be concerned about the sample size is either questions of nonresponse bias, but it turns out -- or the fact that some of the changes won't hold up as significant. It turned out we had very few significant differences between the people who came and the people who didn't. We had a stratified random sample that we contacted people by e-mail. And there were very few differences in their attitudes, as well as in their demographics. And we had all sectors represented.
Now, somebody pointed out that, you know, we had more men than women, but we had exactly the same percentage of men and women in the sample as in the nonparticipants. And we will check the actual attendance at IGF meetings and check it against that. But we -- yes, we had more men, but not significantly more men among the participants.
And we had 7 of the 13 policy options changed significantly after people grappled for hours. This was just on day zero here. People grappled with the pros and cons of different policy options, and I can't read the policy options from here, but you can see the ones with the asterisks -- well, there were lots of interesting significant changes. We will make all of this public.
And also, since all of the proposals were rated on the same scale from zero to ten, you can see which were the top proposals after deliberation. Even if they fell somewhat, they still had strong support. And so those are the top five proposals at the end of the day. And the ones that changed significantly, you can see the P values in the asterisks there. And we had knowledge questions. We always had knowledge questions to see if the people become more informed. People said you can't do it with Internet governance because the people are so well informed, they won't learn anything. Turned out we had very significant -- our index of knowledge questions increased significantly. People learned. And the questions are just a way of measuring that.
So the people -- and they were attitudinally representative. We had all sectors represented, and we had all regions of the world represented. And there were no differences between the -- now, we had a problem applying it to this -- what I really wish is that the IGF would give people an option, when they registered, to make their e-mail available to other events at the IGF. Because we were searching publicly available emails. We were finding that a lot of our e-mail invitations were going into spam folders and never were opened. Finally, Vint Cerf, who was one of the advisers on the advisory Committee for the process, allowed us to send the emails in his name. So all of a sudden people were opening the e-mails, because it was a message from Vint Cerf. And so then we were able to recruit the sample.
But if we had the -- we lost six weeks searching publicly available information for e-mail addresses. I have a very, like Kathleen Giles said, the manager of my center, I have a skilled staff. They were searching emails. They should have been doing other things. But in principle we wanted to show that it would be possible to do this with Internet Governance at the IGF.
I also would like to take the same issues to the public and some of the other issues we were talking about doing on Internet Governance, because we actually prepared an agenda of three big issues. We only did one. Access for the next billion. But cybersecurity and processes of Internet Governance themselves we would also like to do eventually. Not only at the IGF, but we think some of those issues would merit public consultation in various countries.
And we do, as I said, we have done close to 80 projects around the world. I'm just back from Ghana, where we did one in the City of Tamale. We presented the results. That was about urgent public health issues in a Metropolis that is growing too fast in the poorest part of the country. But those are other issues.
But now we're about to go to Mongolia, where we're doing a project for the City of Ulaanbaatar about charting some of the most important issues about its future. So this is a worldwide process. We apply it in the United States. We apply it indeveloping countries. I'm going to Curitiba next week. There is a project in Brazil that we're going to do. We applied it in Latin America, Japan, China. But it can be done in Internet Governance issues, because it seems to me that it gives voice.
The basic point that I want to close with is Democracy should be about the will of the people. Some public. IGF may be a relevant public. Certainly ordinary people are relevant public. Democracy should be about the will of the people.
As Edmon was communicating, most people most of the time do not become informed. And when they pay attention, remember there is the whole persuasion industry ready to try to manipulate their views. Give them one side rather than another. Try to get them to a predetermined conclusion. Our process, we attempt people to -- people said I shouldn't use the word "balanced." You should explain why. Competing argument also. We want to give voice to a variety of competing arguments so people can see the other side and think about the merits of issues. But then also get their questions answered. So that is why we alternate small groups and plenary sessions with competing experts. Get their questions answered about whether there is anything misleading or partial about what they have been told on one side or the other, so that they can really, in an evidence-based way, consider the reasons for one thing or another. As offered by the stakeholder community. As offered by their fellow participants, who often have additional reasons.
Reason-based collective will formation, the will of the people, you could use a fancy Habermasian phrase, the unforced phrase. But Habermasian applies it that the ideal space that is purely imaginary. This method is practical and can be used in various contexts, and just two days ago, it was used here. Thank you very much.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Thank you, Jim. I'd be interested to bring it to ICANN. Maybe we can start with the auction proceeds, and then tackle the CCWG. But that is something else.
Now over to Julia. It seems from Jim's experiment, you are no longer needed. We can -- you know, just get people to sit in your seat. But you'll talk a bit about the liquid Democracy, which is actually also challenging, I guess, your job as well.
>> JULIA REDA: It's a great pleasure to be here. I think sometimes in the Internet community we forget that there have been really centuries of research into how Democracy, decision-making can work and deliberation can work. And I think it's important to know about liquid Democracy and about what I'm going to present to you, that this is not an alternative or a challenge to what Jim has just described about deliberative polling. But it's a method that actually addresses a different part of what we think about as Democracy. And so it's less focused on the deliberation side of the equation, although there are elements of it. But more on the decision-making sides, on arriving at text, which is certainly done in some multistakeholder fora, although not particularly in the IGF.
So my background is that I come from the Pirate Party, which is a very young party that was started in 2006 and exists in a lot of councils all over the world. And my experiences and the particular use of liquid Democracy that I'll explain to you is very much informed by what has happened in the German Pirate Parties, but there are a lot of Pirate Parties and NGOs around the world that are using different variants of liquid Democracy that are somehow informed by the same ideas.
So the way -- the point that we started from was one of frustration with the way that representative politics work, and particularly with the nature of election promises from political parties in the field of digital rights. Because there is this theory in political science that I think has a lot of merit that is that essentially all the parties promise the same things. Every party wants to have economic growth. Every party wants to have fundamental rights. Every party wants to protect the environment. The differences between the parties are which points are more important to them than others.
And it turned out that in a lot of the established party systems in Europe and probably also in other places, none of them find digital rights particularly important. So we figured okay. We have to form a party. We have to be the one place where these considerations about antisurveillance, about access to information, access to knowledge take precedence over other considerations. So we have to promise that we will not give up these goals in order to score some points on something else.
So we started with a very sort of naive approach to just saying okay, we gather all the people who really care about digital rights and then we will avoid all the problems that we have with proportional representation and so on, and just let everybody vote in a Democratic way and everybody participate in the process.
And so some of the challenges that we saw was, for example, if you are trying to write an electoral programme over a mailing list, that is an incredibly arduous process. You end up with a few people dominating the debate. This is something that a lot of the Internet Governance mailing lists around know very well. If you just say everybody can participate, there are no rules, the existing power structures in society will just be reflected in what is happening in this open space. So that means the people who have a lot of time, the people who have a lot of resource, and the people who represent dominant groups in society. So, you know, in terms of class, in terms of gender, in terms of ethnicity, that they will dominate the discussion and also communicate in a way that makes it -- that makes other people reluctant to voice a minority opinion, because they fear they might be attacked.
The other thing is that when it comes to the actual voting about competing positions, that you do find yourself in a position that you kind of have to pay attention to everything. This is a little bit the problem of the willful ignorance that Jim described. That people just don't have the time and the energy to deeply research every single topic and will at the end of the day just vote the way that the people who have a dominant position in an organization tell them to vote.
So we saw these problems on the one hand with representative Democracy, that you kind of have to sign up for a policy fund. I vote for a party. Let's say I vote for the liberal party because I really agree with their position on LGBT rights, for example, but I completely disagree with their economic policy, so I have to do the straight off. And then on the direct Democratic side you have problems like what we call a dominance of the early retirees. So people who tend to have more money than others and tend to have more time than others end up being the ones dominating the debate.
So liquid Democracy is an attempt of using the possibilities of technology to combine the positive elements of Democracy 1.0 and 2.0, as Edmon has put it, and try to avoid the pitfalls of both of these systems.
So, essentially, the way that we approach this is that when trying to develop an electoral program or when trying to decide how our members should vote on a particular issue in Parliament, somebody would come out with a proposal. And this proposal would be deliberated for a certain amount of time, although liquid Democracy does not tell you how the deliberation process should take place, only that it leaves time for it. So there has to be a certain amount of time between when somebody makes an initial proposal and when there is actually going to be a vote.
So in this sense, this could be where deliberative polling would be employed. During this process, other than sending back and forth different versions of the same text through a mailing list and saying I disagree with this phrase, I disagree with this phrase, here are my track changes, which obviously doesn't work very well, people can make proposals for a particular change, and then other people within the system can vote on this change, just indicating basically okay, if this change were adopted, I would be more likely to accept the end outcome of this particular. Let's say it's a proposal for a law that we're discussing. So if this part of the law is changed, I would be more likely to support it. Or if it is changed, I would be less likely to support it.
So the person who made the initial proposal is trying to build a consensus or trying to build a broad majority for a particular proposal for a law. And they have a quantified view of how other people see a proposal. So if somebody makes a proposal for an improvement of the law that they're working on, the initiator can decide, okay, this one person may think this is a very bad idea. But there are a large number of other people who prefer what we're working on right now. So I'm not going to take this proposal onboard.
The other important point of liquid Democracy, throughout this entire process, is that we are trying to address the issue that not everybody can participate in everything by employing a system of issue-based delegation. So that means every single person at every point in time can decide whether they want to participate by themselves. Whether they want to evaluate every single proposal for a change. Whether they want to write changes themselves or whether they want to delegate their vote to a different person within the system. And they can do this in a very fine grained way. So I don't have to give away my vote to a different party member and then four years later I can correct my decision. But rather I can say I trust this person on environmental issues, so I'll give my vote to this person on all the questions about environmental legislation, as long as I'm not participating myself. But on Internet policy I'm actually giving my vote to somebody else.
And this can be taken back at any time. So it's also possible, for example, if I know I'm going to be in Brazil for a week, I'm not going to be able to participate in the ongoing decision-making process, I can just delegate my vote for a week to a particular person. And then when I come back I participate myself again. We have found that this kind of approach todecision-making has some very interesting effects.
First of all, votes do accumulate with a number of prominent opinion leaders within the party. And there has been kind of a, yes, a very controversial discussion about whether this is good or bad. Some people say the possibility to actually delegate your vote in this way is actually contributing to a strict hierarchy and contributing to a few number of people being in control of the discussion, whereas others argued that this -- the fact that everybody can see who is delegating their votes to whom. You are making a visible power structure that exists in a Democratic system anyway, and this is a way of making everybody more accountable.
We have also arrived at a fundamental problem that I think the ICANN discussion that we're having, the discussion about ICANN accountability that we're having at the moment, can be compared to a little bit, that is if anybody, in principle, if everybody has the ability to participate in the decision-making process directly, be it through participating in the discussion through voting for a representative, does that mean that every single member of the community has to be accountable? When we designed our liquid Democracy tool, we found that yes, if you want to make binding decisions over the Internet, and you don't want to -- the results to be easily manipulated, for example, by the Administrators running the system, then every step of the way has to be transparent. That also means that everybody can see how everybody else voted. And of course we had members who then said well, we would actually like not -- there not to be a public record of our political opinions. This is very sensitive information that we would like to keep secret. But at the same time, they also want to be the ones making the decisions.
So the question is, if we develop new forms of Democracy that give power to individual participants, to what extent do they then have to be accountable to the community and have to answer for the decisions that they make in such a system?
And I think we're discussing about the role of the ICANN board and the accountability structures that exist there, these are exactly the kind of questions that are cropping up in these fora.
I think, yes, just to sum up, the experiments that we are doing in the different Pirate Parties I think is, in some ways, finding better ways of arriving at text collectively that better reflect the opinions of the people who participated. However,they do not replace the very important and I think essentially the more important part of any Democratic process, that is actually the deliberation and the phase in which Democrat -- in which depositions that people actually hold evolve in the conversations with others.
I think it would be good if multistakeholder fora actually seriously looked at these experiments with how to reform Democratic decision-making, rather than just saying we cannot have any Democracy in these fora, because the Democracy that we know doesn't work.
I think we have to set a higher standard for ourselves and try to make Democracy work for these multistakeholder fora, and to make sure that there cannot be a capture of any particular stakeholder group of any of this process. And I think there is a lot of research, a lot of experiments with Democracy out there that can help us achieve this goal.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Thank you. It would be interesting to, rather than talking about the CCWG, to recall directors, at the new option, than to take back part of the votes on certain issues. I guess that is one of the crux of the liquid Democracy concept.
So with that, a couple of social political experiments on Democracy and looking to Avri and Andrew for some response to some of those, and maybe adding to -- I guess going back to the core question about the multistakeholder approach and Democracy or Democratic principles in that context.
>> AVRI DORIA: Thank you.
I guess some of the things have already been said may be curious -- I'm not talking directly into it. Okay. Now. Thank you.
Okay. So, first of all, I've always had difficulty understanding the notion of a serial of Democracy 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, because I tend to think of Democracy as sort of a multivariate state where different activities, different ways of doing it, sort of occupy different parts of the state in terms of the degree to which people are represented, the directness of the representation, the kind of mechanisms that are used.
And I liked your mention of the voting against. It's interesting. I've tried to use it, and every time I tried, people have rejected the idea. So I'm going to have to figure out how it is -- I thought it was a marvelous way to do a preliminary vote, certainly. If various groups are going to vote, and we always vote for our favorites, well, why don't we get rid of our least favorites before then we get into contention. But so far I've not been able to convince anyone to try it.
Also, with liquid Democracy, as a mechanism, it's interesting to hear you say that within the multistakeholder model people say they can't use Democracy because, A, I would contend it's a form of Democracy. But, B, within it, there have always been people that are elected representatives, that are using voting mechanisms, that actually practice various forms of Democracy within the model.
Now, when I argue that the multistakeholder model is a form of Democracy, I first would admit that there is no one form of it. We find that it expresses itself in many different ways. And it really does define itself as a form of participatory Democracy. Because it is using forms of Democracy. It is people participating. It is people participating and expressing their views in the process of either the consultative process or even the decision process.
And one of the things that I think it also includes is when I think of the multistakeholder model, I think of multistakeholder all the way down. And by that I mean at a top level, you have the various major stakeholder groups. You have the Governments acting. You have the Civil Society acting, et cetera. And whether it's divided as it's done in the IGF along Tunis Agenda lines, or it's done in ICANN along various other groupings, or I would contend it's even done in the IETF along technical striations of people that have various kinds of technical affinity and work on the same thing, participating as groupings, you find that within those groupings they elect representatives frequently. And very often, within those groupings, you find subgroupings that often contribute representatives.
So, basically, you have a representative model within multistakeholder models in many different forms, whether it's horizontally or vertically. You find that you're constantly using different Democratic mechanisms.
I, in terms of looking at representational Democracy, I think it is always a necessary forum, but it's hardly ever sufficient. And I think because the normal national based, citizen based form of direct Democracy is, you know, the one person, one vote within one place and time, and it hardly ever represents the full aspect of the population. It doesn't represent the aspect of people that go across borders. It doesn't represent people in their various affinities. And so within a multistakeholder environment, you allow the various aspects of people, the way they group, as such, to actually also come into the discussions. So that, for example, if we go back to an ICANN, my national representative is there. Well, sort of. I mean, you know, we elect representatives, they pick bureaucrats and nobody ever looks at them ever again. So perhaps representative Democracy there is a little bit of an exaggeration.
But the representative Democracy could change that person every couple years. It's -- we have accepted, in a particular country, to represent ourselves that way. I mean, I gave up on believing that anyone could ever actually represent me probablyabout 50 years ago. And since then I've been looking for ways to make sure that the interests of things that I care about are indeed represented.
So that's the importance of the Civil Society organizations, that basically come in with a different aspect of people. When we divide in one form of stakeholder groups, we forget that everybody is Civil Society when they go home at night. So there is that aspect of every Government person, of every business person, of every artist, whatever, that they are Civil Society at some point in their lives. And they get represented by groups who make it their purpose to try and represent their interests. They don't represent them necessarily as people, but they represent the interests as they best understand them.
I'm even not displeased that businesses get included. Because when a business is there, they are dealing with the interests of not only the people as workers, and hopefully more and more businesses, you know, include their workers in their makeups, but also it's including those that consume their products. It's including that aspect of humans in the thing.
So within the multistakeholder model, however you cut it up, you find that you're representing people in a large sense. You're also making it possible for people to participate in -- directly. So you find that within that matrix a multistakeholder model allows you to sort of pick the space and mechanisms that work best in a situation.
I was timing myself, I had four -- I have four minutes left, but I can stop if you wish. I figured I would turn on a timer when I started so that I kept myself.
So we have -- I'll stop then.
No. That's -- that could be enough.
>> EDMON CHUNG: It's just -- no. No. I think you were just getting into the most exciting part. So I didn't want to jump in, by voice.
Anyway, I think, you know, those are very important observations. But in terms of the GAC representative, you can also replace the ALAC representative. I won't go there. But that's also supposedly from the people in representation. But representation itself is somewhat problematic. Who are you representing? In certain areas, you're almost representing the entire Internet population, and that sometimes -- you know, we will come back to you. And I just want to -- if -- I'm hoping that our discussion here is enough to spark some interest for some feedback from the floor as well.
But just before that, I'll let Andrew have some, I guess, feedback. And yes, apology, I'm hoping that we leave at least about 15 minutes or so for the floor to talk about it.
>> ANDREW SULLIVAN: Thank you. So I hope that, too. Because I thought this was all very interesting, except that I kepthearing about representativity and the IETF. I don't believe that model of how the IETF works. I'm the Chair of the IAB and I'm here to tell you that I do not speak for the IAB. If I tried to, they would cut me down. Interestingly, the IAB can replace me at any time with a vote, two-thirds, I keep that in mind.
The way we work is rough consensus. And when we appoint people to the IAB or the Internet engineering steer group, the goal is to get people to do some work. But our general principle is that we push the decision-making down into the IETF. We work by rough consensus, and "rough consensus" has a funny meaning in the IETF, because what it really means is no big observation.
So the reason that we work that way -- and this is an important distinction I think with many of the other discussions that are going on here -- is because there is a fact of the matter in our case. This is an engineering discussion we're having. We're not there to represent people. We don't need to represent people. When the IETF takes positions on internal matters like, for instance, how it's going to organize itself, or when it takes positions on things that are -- that impinge upon political development, the IETF has a very hard time making decisions. And the reason for that is that we're not really equipped to do it.
What we want is the running code part. That's a really important part. And when you have questions about does this work on the Internet, it's not actually that hard to make a decision. Well, did the packet get there, does it cause problems for these other things, and so on? You can make those analyses. It's a technical matter. We don't always pick the right answer, but that's a different question than the other things, like, for instance, what is the right way to bring up our children. I have no idea how you would even test that. And those are political -- you know, those are Public Policy issues that I think the kinds of mechanisms that the IETF uses probably won't work that well for.
There is, however, something that I think is important and there is a way in which the IETF is a multistakeholder system, and we have a sort of way of working out how the different interests come together. And that is you come with certain biases, certain views about what parts of the Internet stack are important, whether you're an applications person or a routing layer or whatever. And you think that those things are important and those considerations are super valuable and you want to make sure that they are represented in whatever comes out.
But we all have a common stake, right? That is a key part of the reason that the IETF mechanism works at all. We have a deep and abiding shared value in making the Internet work better. And it seems to me that in the cases where things are strained in other multistakeholder environments, such as perhaps ICANN, or in Public Policy debates where we saw some excellent images of so and so does not represent me, what this really comes down to is a deep suspicion that the common project is no longer going on. That there is not enough shared between the person who is feeling in some sense disempowered by this decision-making mechanism and the way the mechanism works, the way that the power is in control of the people running it.
I think in the IETF the resolve is that we have got an enormous number of reconsideration things. We call it appeal, but it's really reconsideration. We don't use it often, because it turns out that the pressure is so great they have to call consensus and to allow it to go on so long that if the consensus is not emerging, that the answer in the IETF is that we don't use it that much. But that's the kind of conversation you can have. If you can't come to agreement on the standards of the Internet, we have no Internet police, so people will release whatever they want anyway. And maybe that's the other thing. In many of the other kinds of decision-making that we're talking about, the stakes are big. There is money at stake. There isquestion about whether we will go to war or not. Those are big stakes. If there is a question of whether the technology is standardized on the Internet, and does it interoperate, one, you can test if it interoperates. You can test that. And, two,there are things you can deploy. So because our stakes are low, we can afford this mechanism by which we have to find a rough conscientious, rather expensive rough consensus.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Do you consider it as a Democratic space at the IETF? That is at the crux of the question as well.
>> ANDREW SULLIVAN: So that is an interesting question. But I would say that it is profoundly Democratic in the sense that we believe that a collection of -- I have to say the smartest people I ever met show up at the IETF. And they work really hard at this. And they are all well meaning and they are deeply informed. Sometimes they are deeply misinformed. And that consequence means that you have a big tussle about people who know what they are talking about or who are completely confused. But it's rather that if you have someone weighing in if they know nothing, and if they know nothing, we yell at them. So that's the environment. And there is a certain kind of Democratic system there. It's a representation of people who are interested in this topic. We think that we're making the Internet better in a technical sense, but I don't think that we have the responsibility to represent people generally. And I don't think that the IETF would try to do that or pretend that it does.
>> EDMON CHUNG: What Avri mentioned and what Andrew mentioned is at the core of what I've been thinking about, and hopefully I'll open it up to the floor and see who wants to jump in at this point. But on one side we have a mechanism that keeps electing representatives. And who they are really representing is a very interesting concept. And on the other hand, we don't -- you know, we continue to have to -- we don't really have so much -- there is leaders and there is representation, but not so much in that sense, the IETF.
And we continue to have a deliberative process, I guess, what Jim introduced, and how it's -- one part of it -- I guess when you first started the experiment, it's more random sampled. But once you get into more self-selected situations in these cases, but in the IETF it's self-selected already, how far does that change what we call or not call Democratic at that point? So that is a background.
I see a hand. Anyone else. Three, four, five. Okay.
>> AUDIENCE: Thanks for actually putting up a great panel and great initial presentations.
Andrew, I like the fact that Democracy is so famous that Andrew could not say it is not Democratic, but he said it's not Democratic in a very nice way. I understand it's not supposed to be Democratic, because he finally said we don't represent people. And I think we should at least get our definitions right.
Democratic is when you represent people. And IETF is rightly based on knowledge expertise. It's checks are about whether things work or not. This is important in that field. But that doesn't make them Democratic. And you need not be Democratic in that sense.
And that apart, quickly, that being the check that we represent people. And I know that notion of representation has been in contestation and should remain in contestation. But as far as we like to be seven billion people living together, we have a complexity. We can go back to simple living. As Ghandi said, if you want to be Democratic, stay in a village. Big systems have big problems. So the cultural choice we make is whether or not we agree with the representation or not. A lot of people say that they don't believe in representation because they are very close to policy decision-making, and the people who are farthest away, they say I'm happy with the representation.
And the last thing, I'm happy with functional representation. I don't know why it doesn't work in Hong Kong. I'd like to hear about it. But the functional representation should be based on people's categories. People could be disability group. I'm happy with a disability group having a global Commission given policy boards at the UN. And the indigenous groups and gender people, they get that, that's different. Business and technical community have different notions of theirorganizations. Quite a stretch. Sorry, Avri. I'm sorry to say that business includes or represents neither workers or the consumers. Now, I agree that if the business disappears, workers and consumers would be harmed, but that is not the point. Weare talking about policy, and most of the people workers need a policy which protects them against the owners and they need protection.
The last point. Technical community. Expertise is good, but it does not give extra votes. But that's important. In Democracy, we agree that after that, after everything else, they have the same vote. And this comes on a nonpeople based representation, and therefore their inclusion is not Democratic. Sorry I took long.
>> EDMON CHUNG: I'll take it offline on why functional constituency didn't work in Hong Kong and that's why I'm calling it age constituency to avoid that problem.
I have a queue. I'll go through the queue.
>> AUDIENCE: Hello. My name is Raoul Plommer from the Electronic Frontier in Finland, and open Government is one of the core agendas for the Pirates and that's my personal favorite out of them. We seem to be the only party that advocates changing the Democratic system itself, which is surprising, because there are so many disillusioned people with politics. You can give more than one vote and distribute them over different candidates with priorities. Your favorite candidate might be very unlikely to get elected, so people don't vote for him or her just because of that unlikeliness.
Other examples include open initiatives to change the law, like we have done in Finland, which resulted in an equal marriage law being instated in Finland. Strengthening the LGBT rights. Increasing the transparency of governments through publishing the information used by the decision-makers by political parties. This lowers the thresholds that Governments have for citizen participation by giving them the chance to challenge the information that the politicians have before the decisions are made. Based on that information, given to them, it decentralizes power, which as far as I see is practically always a change for the better. The Pirates want to encourage parties to publish the information that they use or explain for each case why that cannot be done. It should really be this way around, access to all information produced by the Government, funded by the taxes, should be by default the norm.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Thank you. Finland always seems so far ahead of us. I had three -- yes?
>> AUDIENCE: Hi. I'm Japreet Grewal from the Internet Society in India. Since we are discussing the multistakeholder model, and it implies inclusiveness, I would like to share some statistics that we've come up with.
And so basically the, for example, the IANA transition, we had looked at a few mailing lists, and we had basically done a survey of these mailing lists and we came up with statistics. There were around 239 individuals which participated. And around 98 substantively contributed to the final shape of the proposal. Well, out of these 98 people, 39 were from United States of America. 77 were from western Europe, Canada, Israel, Australia and New Zealand. None from eastern European and Russia. And five from Latin American and Greenland group.
Apart from this, we also looked at the statistics of relating to registrars, registry, as well, and you can see three out of five registrars are from the United States of America. And 45 percent of the registries are from the United States of America. Well, when you talk about registrars, only 0.6 percent represent or are in 54 countries in Africa. So would you like to comment on this research?
>> EDMON CHUNG: I'll come back around. But just a quick observation. That is the classic problem with self-collected kinds of samples, when you go into a deliberation, I guess. So we will come back to your question when we round up.
But I have two more persons. The lady over there. And then you.
>> AUDIENCE: Good afternoon. I am Hafala, student of International Relations here in Brazil. We were talking about the Democracy 3.0, how we can have the appearance of Democracy, as Lincoln shares in the definition. In 2013 we had a lot of protests here in Brazil. It was reported for all over the world. And the people were recalling for political reform. So how did we imagine the President makes that for us? They made a Democrat. It's the national political for social participation in the politics. And our Congressmen said no, for the Democratic.
But why they said that, you shared with us a phrase that said nobody tells me what I have to do and what I have to say. So that is the speech of the Congressman here in Brazil. They thought that it is this program of social participation in politics. It will make that the Congress -- it will have nothing to do inside of the resident politics. But that is not it. We wanted to use the Internet to use that as a basis to share what we need and what we want that the politicians make for us and for the society.
Last year we had the elections here in Brazil. So I was one of the people who had disseminated Democracy 3.0. We had a big -- we could see that the seats, it was disseminated by Democracy on the Internet. We had so much trouble about that. And today we have problems because of the elections of the last year by the Internet.
So I wanted to share that point of View From Brazil. And what is happening inside of here with the Internet, with the Democracy, and the people -- I'm always interested with the participation inside of the politics inside of Brazil. Thank you.
>> EDMON CHUNG: That's interesting. In terms of representation, and from the Internet Governance experience, when on one end the representative doesn't claim to represent on the IETF, and on the other side the ICANN more actively does something, although there are challenges to that.
I have two gentlemen over here, and then Izumi and Bertrand and Anriette. We can run over a few minutes.
>> Hello. I'm Andre. And first I would like to comment on the problem of the least favorite candidate. Because in such a system, the majority would always vote out the minority candidates. In Brazil, the conservatives are strong in Congress. They are the bovine, bullets and the Bible. And the voters would take out candidates from the right, which represent minorities. And the main reason that these persons are in Congress is because they are funded by the private Sector. The candidates can in turn try to make changes.
Which leads to the second part of my question, which is how elections get funded. And Brazil just banned the privatesector from funding elections and anonymous donations. So we will probably see the results of that in the next election. We have one in the next year.
So I would like to know if any of you and your countries have something in that side, like banning the private sectorfunding of elections, and besides that how you have the enforcement of the will of the people if the candidate is finest and what he can do about it.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Campaign financing is definitely interesting. Just a clarification on the counter poll concept. It's a thought experiment, not implemented. But it's also for a single seat. It doesn't work for multiple seats. That would be representation, proportional representation, those things. But if it's one seat, what with a counter poll, if you're a minority party, you have a veto against the popular guy. That is -- you know, I challenge you to think about that. And that's the feature of this.
I have a gentleman here and then Izumi and then --
>> AUDIENCE: Good morning. My name is (inaudible) and I'm from the (inaudible) and also the youth at IGF fellowshipprogram. I first complement the table and I would like to add a few topics so we can think about this sensitive subject. And I'll try to be brief so we can have time too discuss it.
The first one, what is the concept of Democracy when applying it to the present days and also to the Internet ecosystem? That is something really important to think about. Could we really think that the -- that they are actually the same?
Secondly, could you think about rescuing the importance of the ideology as a way of reuniting people and political parties in order to save, with quotes, the representative Democracy model? Could an effective call for the participation of the youth people (inaudible).
Third, we have a problem. What are the solutions that can be taught to make a possible Democracy when you have the urgent concern of connecting those who are not connected and also the next billion of people? If we can succeed connecting them as needed for their full participation in the deliberative process, what of the use of technology and also the Internet, a way of reinforcing the way of the existing social divide. How to give these people voice and decision-making power. One of the things that has to be here is the idea of the jurisdictional courts as well as the (inaudible).
And then, finally, if Democracy is the answer, so what is the question? Thank you.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Democracy is also the question, maybe, I think. Very interesting. It just sparked my thinking that when we talk about Democracy in the dual political sense, some argument is that you have to have food and solve hunger first before you do Democracy. Here we have a situation where you've got to give universal access before you talk about Internet Governance. Very interesting parallel.
>> AUDIENCE: Thank you, I'm Izumi Aizu and I came from Tokyo, being involved in ICANN and others.
First of all, very interesting approaches. I learned a lot. Having been involved with the Internet Governance, let's say, what we are facing, these challenges of a global nature that is not necessarily solved by the national aggregation, national, International systems, does it dictate a different kind of approach for Democracy or a multistakeholder thing? I'd like to ask you to comment, if you have.
And we see perhaps some kind of emergence for global polity. IETF can be a sort of manifestation. And perhaps we -- Europe is somewhere in between. The nation state kind of system is superseded by a certain portion of the EU element. That is very rare for any other parts of the world at the moment and that may give the trial for the jurisdiction that I really like. So to me the multistakeholder of ICANN, I was a member of the first global election Committee who devised the first global election, which didn't work too well. That gave the alarm or more or less not a voting vote in the first place. And other story.
But then also that is sort of supplemented by the so-called multistakeholder. And the WSIS is another global endeavor that somehow they called for the other stakeholders to get involved. While the national Governments decided that the General Assembly couldn't implement that in the first phase in Geneva, we had to fight a lot to put the Civil Society and the PrivateSector together in the framework. So because of the global nature, maybe we have global warming, other issues, the issues are a global nature. And the bureaucrats could help effectively. But what is interesting is that that's global policy in nature, and influencing us into the method.
I'll talk about my Japanese issues for certain issues that I'd rather associate with some Brazilian guys, that this Internet is making a new kind of thinking or awareness that is reflecting back to the national politics. That's my observation and I'd like to hear if you have any comments on this. Thank you.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Thank you. Bertrand. And then I'll go through for some final comments.
>> BERTRAND de La CHAPELLE: I'm the the Director of the Internet and Jurisdiction Project. I had a workshop that was exactly competing at the same time. Just a few words. This question is the multistakeholder model Democratic? There are two issues. One, the expression "multistakeholder model" I hate. There is no multistakeholder model. There is a best multistakeholder approach, and probably multistakeholder principle. For me, the principle for multistakeholder is the right for any person, individual, or entity, to participate in an appropriate manner in the processes of governance that deal with their issue, the issues that they are impacted by or that they do impact. That's the first thing. So there is no multistakeholder model.
And if we ask the question, the IETF, the World Wide Web Consortium, and ICANN function in completely different ways. Just like any of the representative democracies function in different ways. The structure of France, Germany, the US and the UK, just to take those four countries, and they are all representative democracies and parliamentary representative democracies.
The second thing is the word "Democratic." When there is an equivalence made between democracy and representativedemocracy, representative democracy is a one way. But for any Frenchman who studied history, there has been an intense fight around the tension between direct democracy and representative democracy. And at the time, representative democracy was labeled as an absolute elitism. It was something that was taking the participation away from people. The problem is that representative democracy is a very valid solution to provide democracy at scale. And when you think about the Greek cities, the Greek city was a size where people could come to the agora, so they could come to the forum and they could make a decision among themselves. When you want a scale up, thanks to the printing press, we can delegate people and give enough that gives us information about what they are saying on our behalf.
But now we are confronted with Democracy at scale at very different proportions, and countries like India or China are confronted with the problem of Democracy at the billion scale. What we're talking about on the Internet and the cross-border communities is groups of billions, of hundreds of millions of people who are interacting on spaces that they share online that are not States, but they are communities. And defining the rules for those communities is one of the big challenges.
So I want to really insist that democratic shouldn't be equated to representative Democracy, and that what we're confronted with is a challenge of participation. And the final element and what we do in the development of norms and the implementation of norms always go through stages. There are moments where you identify a problem, then you frame this problem, then you draft the potential solution, then you validate the solution, then you implement it. And then you again review or whatever disputes. The participation of the different stakeholders in the multistakeholder model are completely different at each of those stages. You can have an extremely open process in the early stage, and for those who want a very strong role for Government, they can be essential in the validation phase, if that is the solution we find. But in the implementation, it also depends on the other actors. So thinking about the stages of multistakeholder processes, and finally something that is dearly missing, both here and in the ICANN space, not in the IETF mind you, but in the ICANN space and here, is procedures. We have not documented procedures for fair, balanced, inclusive and respectful participation in Working Groups, and all those things.
If you leave a Parliament without the rules of procedures, it's a total chaos. It's what it was at the beginning. People were taking the floor, shouting at each other. And the statistics that you gave indicate that the way we manage mailing lists do not have rules of procedures that are sufficiently adopted.
We are all from one country users of certain platforms, mindful of particular topics. And the multistakeholder approach is to make sure that all the different components that I care about are there in the space. I do not want, even as a French citizen, to be represented in International discussions exclusively by the French Government.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Very interesting interpretation of multistakeholder approach, I guess.
And then I'll go to you and James and Avri.
>> JULIA REDA: I want to come back to the point about the criticism of multistakeholderism as not being sufficientlyDemocratic. You mentioned that -- well, we vote -- because --
>> AVRI DORIA: It was a declaration that it was not at all Democratic.
>> JULIA REDA: That it's not Democratic. I'll play the devil's advocate. Voting has very little to do with it. When we answer the question whether multistakeholderism is Democratic or not, we don't have to start from scratch. There is a huge body of academia that worked on defining Democracy, and voting is a very small part of it.
For example, one essential part of establishing whether a country is Democratic, what political scientists look at is whether there has been a peaceful change of powers through a set of rules. So if you have a system that for decades has been run by the same small group of benevolent leaders, that would not qualify as Democratic. I think the point where multistakeholder approaches fall short in terms of the criticism that we're hearing is the question of representation. And, of course, there are a lot of problems with representation that also the liquid Democracy models that we are using in my party are trying to address. But the fundamental problem that we have is we have 7 billion people that cannot all be sitting on this -- at this table. And of course the stakeholder groups and the people who are here are by no means a representative sample of everybody who is affected by the decisions that may be informed by the discussions that we're having here.
And I think the money has come up in the -- also in the criticism of representative Democracy in the form of campaign financing. And money is also the elephant in the room in the discussions that we're having here. Companies as a stakeholder group, of course, have a lot more funding available to them than Civil Society and have a lot more ability to send people to these kind of fora. And I think it is a fundamental difference that Civil Society groups and also Governments essentially do represent people and people's interests, whereas the representatives of business do not represent people. They represent businesses, which are not people.
So if you look at, for example, the debates that we're having around net neutrality, just because we are all customers of an Internet company doesn't mean that the Internet -- that the Internet Service Provider will only have our best interest for access in mind. Otherwise, we wouldn't have a discussion about net neutrality and everybody would just agree that it's a great idea.
So I think if we want to take multistakeholderism seriously as a way of consensus building, we do have to actively try to correct the imbalances and try to correct the differences in representation of the different stakeholder groups. We have gone through this in a lot of other areas, where certain groups are marginalized, and we try to use affirmative action. We try to use quota to correct this, and this is what we also have to do if we want to be serious about, you know, Civil Society and companies sitting around a table and agreeing amicably. This is not going to happen if we don't take an active choice in making sure that they actually have the same kind of power in these fora.
And I think this also to some extent applies to what the IETF is doing. Of course, there is a huge difference between passing the law and making a standard. But I would also challenge the notion that there is such a thing as a purely apolitical technical decisions. Because, of course, the code that we use also has an impact on how society develops. And even if it may not be the intention at the outset, how a system is structured, how code is run does have an effect on societal issues.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Jim?
>> JAMES FISHKIN: Well, my goodness, this panel covers a lot of different approaches. Looking, I really think you candistinguish four kinds of Democracy. You can distinguish elected representative Democracy, which usually is party competition Democracy, not always, but usually.
You can distinguish the kind of elite expert -- elite deliberation by representatives, which is what Madison had in mind when they designed the American Constitution. Representatives were supposed to define the views when passing them through the citizens. There were no parties. They were supposed to decide on the merits. It didn't work that way for very long, because people wanted to mobilize and organize to get re-elected.
Then you can distinguish mass participatory Democracy, referenda, where the people themselves directly make decision, and at scale that becomes the initiative system we have in California.
Now, and then you can distinguish the model that I'm pushing here, which is random samples that deliberate. Now, that got lost in the dust of history, but in fact it was central to the Athenians, because they couldn't all gather together. There were between 30 and 60,000 citizens in ancient Athens and the Agora could only hold 6,000. So they had the same problem that everybody couldn't gather together. So they took a random example after a lot of deliberation. It turns out they didn't understand sampling, but they did it well. But you don't need a bigger sample with a bigger country. If you think of the European Union as a whole, you can represent the European Union as a whole, with the same kind of sample that you could represent Athens or some smaller entity. It's very counter intuitive.
So the actual method of deliberative Democracy that I'm promoting, it could be applied in India. It could be applied -- it's been applied at the national level in a lot of places. So the idea is that -- but the point of it is to get a representation of what the public would think if they were really engaged in the issues. That adds something because elected representatives may -- are more concerned with getting re-elected than they are with the merits of the issue, usually; not always, but usually.
Mass participatory Democracy has the problem that it's self selected mobilization and everybody is trying to bombard these people with messages to divert them in one direction or another. So mass participatory Democracy won't provide you with the will of the people. Elected representative Democracy will often not. That's a failing, but it will often not.
The kind of elite deliberation, maybe there are some institutions in this space like this, but very few elite deliberative institutions operate the way Madison wanted. It might be maybe the Federal Reserve does on the merits. Maybe the Supreme Court, although I have my questions about the Supreme Court, at least in the US.
So then the question is, there may be elite deliberative bodies that really decide on the merits. On a technical questionit may be easier. So now the multistakeholder model, the multistakeholder model, if it's just bargaining among stakeholder groups, then it's not deliberation, it's bargaining, and their interests. It's like arm wrestling rather than deciding to the merits. But sometimes it will be decisions on the merits, and that's greatly to be valued. Then it becomes a kind of elite deliberation. It also has the question, if there are self selected groups, who is left out? Because everybody is not part of an organized interest that is considered a stakeholder. So a merit of random sampling is you can include everybody. So that'swhy I think the toolkit of Democracy has different theories, different approaches, and we have got to think about, for the problem at issue, what is the right method and combination of methods in order to achieve something that is truly Democratic?
In my view, what is usually left out is, I hate to be Habermacian about it, but it's the public will formation. The opportunity for people to think about the reasons for doing one thing or another, not just the interests at stake
As has been pointed out, corporations might have different interests than the people they serve, the ISPs. So who will think about the merits of the policy? And that's why we were so interested in doing this pilot. Thank you, Avri, for your help and Peng Wa for your help. We were interested in doing a pilot on access, because that's also the people who were left out. And how to bring them into the virtual world because that will enhance their participation as well.
But all Democracy is a matter of institutional design, and you need to think about what values are served by different designs. So I hate to say look at my website, Center for Deliberative Democracy, but you can see a lot more about this. And we will report on that process that we have conducted here a few days ago on that site as soon as we finish analyzing the data.
>> AVRI DORIA: Thank you. Just a few brief points. One of the problems that I have with the notion of representation of people is that it's a numerical game. Whether it's a statistical game that gets played in the deliberative Democracy, which is basically sort of saying there is a statistical truth and accept it or not. Or there is the question of how many people and how many people's votes can I acquire, so that I can put my view forward in the liquid Democracy. It's a game of numbers.
And, therefore, I think that what is necessary is finding ways of representing the interests. Now, there's a couple ways of representing the interests, which is to have self selected groups, as it were, putting themselves forward to represent those interests. And it's making sure that the doors remain open for anyone that says my interests aren't being served, to get in and actually start representing those interests.
And that within the multistakeholder models, and I'm sorry, Bertrand doesn't like the word, I would have problems with saying there is one unique multistakeholder model, but I do think that there are many of those, is the attempt to basically find a way to represent the greatest number of interests that can be done, using any mechanisms that you can find, whether it's deliberative, whether it's liquid, whether it's voting. So that is sort of, I think, where there is a slight emphasis shift with our multistakeholders attempting to represent not numbers, not statistics, but actually the interests of people.
In terms of the statistics you've got, I would really like to know more about that. And in a sense, at face value, I take them as an indication that the outreach is not sufficient. And that one of the things that is necessary in any multistakeholder model is inadequacy of outreach. It's the fact that you are constantly keeping the door open. You're constantly reaching out to people that have interests that are not being served, and you're making sure that they know whether their interests are served or not. I would be curious, though, to know more about how you determined the country that everyone was from, and such. Because I'm really surprised that there are certain Russian people that I know are participating that don't show up. But maybe they didn't.
I'd be interested to see the comparison on the comments. And whether -- and this is not to deny those stats, it's to want to know more about that. But I think that they are an important tool in figuring out whether -- because that's one of the things that we say we depend on. We depend on the ability to outreach and the fact that we're constantly trying to do more outreach.
And if that is failing, as your statistics show, it might be that is really an important thing to figure out how to fix. Because I think that is an essential part of a multistakeholder process, whatever model you use is that constant effort to reach out to the interests that aren't there.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Last word.
>> ANDREW SULLIVAN: So the reason I worry about claims about representivity in the IETF is the statement that the world is not represented here. We don't try to represent people, despite the fact that I agree with you, technology selection is not neutral with respect to the society. Because what we decided is that we can't do representation, so what we must do instead is complete openness. And that's the trade that we made. We just are open. The only cost is joining a mailing list. It's harder for people who speak English as a second language, but that's it. And if we could provide automatic translation, we would. But the computers are not there yet. So to me that's the kind of trade that we have had to make. And therefore that's part of the reason that I don't think the IETF procedures are terribly Democratic. But I do think that they are open. And there is attention there that we didn't have time to explore, so maybe next time.
>> EDMON CHUNG: Thank you. And I think that means it's the beginning of the discussion. I think it's a timelydiscussion. We are into Internet Governance very much now. And I believe it's having an impact not only on Internet Governance, but also governance especially global coordination overall. And we can inform the process as well, and that's the motivation for this session.
Thank you for bearing with me. Very bad time management; I apologize, again. And thank you for taking a few more minutes out of your lunch to be here.
And please, join me in a round of applause for the speakers. And thank you.
(End of session, 12:54)