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IGF 2019 – Day 3 – Convention Hall I-D – OF #35 Strengthening Digital Transformation through Digital Security

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Fourteenth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Berlin, Germany, from 25 to 29 November 2019. 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. 

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>> REZA:  Very good morning.  We'll start this session on Open Forum 35 in a minute.  So I would like to requested the participants to come in and sit on the front table.  Sit closer with the microphone if you would like to say something later.  Very good morning and welcome to all of you.  Now it's Open Forum 35, strengthening digital transformation through digital security.  First of all, my name is Reza.  I'm from Indonesia IGF.  I thank the IGF for allowing this Open Forum.  I'm glad that we have very sunny morning today and I hope this will allow more discussion for us to be in this forum.  I would like to introduce our panel here of the first one we have Irene and the Citizen Lab in the University of Toronto.  She deals with issues such as Internet governance and new technologies.  Second speaker we have Mr. Damar Juniarto.  It is original organization that focus on depending digital rights and we have also Mattia is a journalist and a steering commit eye of the German IGF.  So that will be the speaking order for today as well.

Just to set some context that a little bit of context of discussion today.  The development of internet is coupled with the spread of negative content and it could be in the form of news, names and other things.  It is the proper one for the people.  So we will have our panel to say what they're thinking about this issues.  So I think I would like to start by giving the floor to Irene to start.  Thank you.

>> IRENE POETRANTO:  Good morning, everyone.  Thank you to Reza for moderating this session and thank you to all of you for being here today.  As he mentioned, my name is Irene Potrapto.  We are a cybersecurity and research lab at the University of Toronto in Toronto, Canada.  We're here to talk about the concept of fake news.  It has been referred to white range in content including disinformation, illegal content, misleading or false content as well as manipulated or fabricated content among others.  The worry is that in such a multi‑cultural, multi‑ethnic and multi‑rich society, the spread of fake news or otherwise called hoaxes or rumors may lead to widespread violence.  It has involved sensitive issues such as ethnicity, race, and politics among others.  And especially during major events like at times of elections, fake news becomes even more pressing because as the last Indonesian election shows, when you have 245,000 candidates running for office from the precedency to local seats, the stakes are incredibly high.  Despite having the highest index freedom, it is clear the problem of fake news is a challenge to the promotion and protection of human rights online as well as offline in Indonesia.  It has the led the government to shut down the internet twice in 2019 thus far.  To address the fake news, many governments around the world have undertaken harsh measures including shutting down the internet as I mentioned that Indonesia did following protests in the pop 1 region.  And these measures are put in place in the name of fighting fake news.  They are drafted and implemented without a multi‑stakeholder process and therefore lacking in account ant and transparency.  They are implemented in addition to existing draconian laws including criminal, cyber crime laws and Cybersecurity Laws which tend to have vague and overly broad provisions.  I will stop here now and I give the floor to Damar.  Thank you.

>> DAMAR JUNIARTO:  Good morning, everyone.  My name is Damar Juniarto.  Thank you for inviting me to be here.  I am the director of (inaudible) of Freedom of Expression Network.  (inaudible) based in bank of Thailand.

Per I will start with fake news this year.  We are aware that fake news hoax are misinformation become problems in southeast region.  In some countries in (inaudible), the government used the fake news as an excuse to silence criticism.  While some others, the government uses fake news to justify their action against humanity.  They have heavy‑handed control on the internet are using fake news to cease more control on news outlet and communication platform.  What is unique about the context of the region is that the fake news and this information reading framework where existing law already inhibit freedom of expression.

In countries like Philippines this information and direct online have series consequences for public opinion.  In cases like Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam and Singapore where they are accessing law that curtail freedom of expression, social media has become their new avenue for government to access and offer free speech.

Start from 2017.  Many answer (inaudible) process.  The government are trying to exploit concern over fake news in order to increase state control of our online communication and software and Internet surveillance.

In 2017 during formal (inaudible), Reza released up to 803 (inaudible) webinar.  This is the first fake news lay in the region and following by Singapore in 2018 and in October 2019, the Thai government told every corner ‑‑ sorry.  Every coffee shop owner to (inaudible) consumer wide because ‑‑ this legislation in the surface looked great.  But in the practice, the government started granting itself the power to remove competing narrative against or not in line with their narratives.

So in case of Indonesia's, island just mentioned, they convert fake news or hoax while amplifying and (inaudible) like IGF a national campaign.  But Indonesia government started using (inaudible) and use Internet shut down in August to September 2019 to handle the spreading of hoax related to socioconflict.  Actually, this government (inaudible) about the fake news, but they are concerned about official narratives be countered by speech, carry it on the platform that they have direct control.  So fake news is an easy way to grant themselves the power they need to nuke the content with the government portrayal of events incidents and also allow making efforts.  It's also hard to mention that the fake news is also open and doings (inaudible) this information of operation in some countries.  Actually, the government is behind some campaign that spreading about the fake news and also this information, but they cover it with this p R stunt.  So I will stop in there and I will continue if I have time to talk about the cybersecurity.  Thank you.

>> CHAIRMAN:  Okay.  Thank you, Irene and Damar setting up what kind of discussion today and we already have the perspective from Asia.  So Asia would like to give the floor to Matthias hopefully to give some perspective from the European side.

>> Matthias:  I have no first hand knowledge of the situation in own dough niecia.  I only know about this from reading in the media and I have known Asian colleagues for a while.  But the problem of this information that's why I would like to focus on some general remarks and I'm very curious to hear how you think they apply to that situation there.  So we see a very critical situation in the dissemination of information on large platforms.  Namely Facebook, Google and YouTube, Instagram if you want to argue that this is different from the Facebook platform which in practice, it has an entirely different logic, but it is owned by the company What's App and so much more.  We do appreciate the fact that there is attempts to addressed problem of spreading information that insights to hate red and violence.  I share the doubts that were already voiced bench by the other two speakers.  There are good ways to take this without the risk of harming freedom of expression.  We have a very specific experience here in Germany where we about two years ago enacted a law that is called the network enforcement law.  It is known as the Facebook because people do see the organization or the company that is addressed with that is mainly Facebook.  And this law has many problematic sides to it.  For example, what has been criticized by civil society, and academia and Germany is that it opens the door.  It doesn't open the door, it gives incentives to over blocking meaning if you have very high fines that can be levered against companies even if they are as big as Facebook and Google, you runs risk that they will sensor I use the word cautiously.  Sensor more contents if they were not with these fines.  Again, that is something we may want to discuss here how these aspects could help situations elsewhere.  For example, what was included in the law is that for the first time, companies, the social networks over 2 million users the threshold in Germany.  Social networks have to accept legal documents.  Whereas before, they were always able to redirect private citizens who wanted to complain in a legal sense.  Fur example, they said that there were some liable information posted on Facebook.  And Facebook did not take down that contents.  If they then initiated legal procedures, Facebook told them to go to Ireland and translate their statements to English before they could do anything because this is wheres company's European headquarters are.  This I think is entirely unacceptable for companies that make huge revenues in the countries they're active in and, for example, there is one part of the law that I as a person, but also (inaudible) which is an organization and also report us without borders the German section, which I'm a board member of actually applauded.  But in general, what we do see is as I said before, there is a risk of over blocking when you are enacting these laws and also although we think it is important to think about the large platforms, we should never forget that many problems with free speech do not stem from the use of social media.  And we have a couple of lessons to learn here in Europe ourselves.  For example, when this speech is so problematic, but at the same time, do not take action against government control in countries like Hungary or Poland.  Then maybe we are not looking in the wrong direction, but at least not looking in all directions we should be looking at.  And I will end with something we are working on intensively and colleagues are also working on this intensively and I would like to side Mozilla here as an organization.  We are looking into ways to get more information from the platforms to better understand low the spread of information ofworking, what impact it has.  And for example, what measures have an impact on the spread of information.  And so far in most cases behind a situation, we are entirely at the let's say we are entirely in a situation where we have to trust what the platforms tell us.  For example, Facebook said that they would initiate large program on what's the word ‑‑ detecting wrong information.  And they would flag information as either trust wordy or not.  And then afterwards, they published a lot of issue ins about what effects it had and how the spread of these wrongful news diminishd or deteariated after this measure was implemented.  But we have to believe their numbers.  There is no way to control or verify the numbers from the outside.  And that is not a situation where we as societies want to issue in.  So what we are thinking about is how to change this situation and get access to more data from the platforms to be able to externally verify their claims?  And this is something that I would have left to discuss today with the representative of Google, but you can see, he didn't show up.

>> CHAIRMAN:  Thank you, Matthias.  I see that this problem is not entirely exclusive on (inaudible) region.  We still have ample of time to discuss and also would love to have some views if are other Vees from southeast Asia or outside of Europe.  So I would like to open the question and answer session or maybe comment, if you have, and then we'll started first session.  If anybody would like to give comment or question, please raise or maybe I start by ‑‑ I have questions.  Which region do you think that people or the word can draw good comparison because I see that maybe this problem is ‑‑ do you have a comment or suggestion where we should look over?

>> Thank you, Reza.  Luckily, the reason I went to this IGF in informy is I want to learn how they're doing with the next DG.  The ‑‑ probably a lot of hate speech in social media since ‑‑ and also I want to compare how the fake news and hate speech in Europe becomes.  I will tell a little more about how it is evolving in Asia in our country.  Fake news is not only about spreading this information.  It's been recognized with tech people within the platform.  So for years I might have seen a number of threats and number of attacks to women at risk communities like journalists and anticorruption activities and firemen activists, region managers who is being affected digitally and also physically.  They use the fake news as a way to send that watch to a person of these Groups.  We also witness what we call a signer (inaudible) norm of harassment with a person of our Groups or miss filing or people of Groups who runs at governor.  Our activities against the revision of corruption and education commission law.  Man's action to give one star review of ‑‑ it is automatically the listing or deleted media apps just because it made a magazine (inaudible) (inaudible) to pit a look at our Indonesian President.  Just happen within this week.  It is against two?  (?), but from star in France.  For some are Mr. (inaudible), related to two ledgers in Indonesia.  This is using the spread of fake news as a way to coordinate and give the one refoot in that app start.

So I will like to see comparison from Germany from the nest GG ‑‑ DG and what would be the proper or ideal way to controlling the hate inside the social media or not.  So that's why I went here and our (inaudible) and also morn from everyone in this IGF.

>> Maybe I respond to that directly.  Just to clarify as argo rhythm watch, let's say don't have a clear position on this because when the next DJ was discussed in Germany, the organization had just been created.  Reporters without borders talk a very clear position and said the law is overly broad.  In detail, it is very (?) done.  Let's put it that way ‑‑ very (inaudible) done.  Let's put it that way.  There is this fear that there are incentives of over blocking.  Too man content items will be taken down because there are these large fines that the companies are threatened with.  So whenever someone said something that is let's say on the border line between content item I call it that can be a video or text image or whatever that is protected by freedom of speech in something we would have can illegal in Germany would be then taken down.  Now, the government also obliged platforms to provide more transparency about this in reports.  So far at least it's my interpretation, these reports are very inconclusive.  We can neither say this over blocking has happened, nor can we say that it hasn't happened.  So probably we need a little more time about this ‑‑ for this to assess this.  Also the German government has not published a good evaluation of the law itself which they promised to do and we need to follow this closely.  Also because it is watch a global issue, the government will also publish this report in English.  I don't know that.  You know?  It's good that I participate here because I can send them an e‑mail to say it's important enough to publish this in English.  Please do see.

Now, what we are asking for and this is something that such laws (inaudible) is that it may be a good idea.  Really heavily depends on the legislation in the country how to go about it and Indonesian law will be entirely different from German law.  It can be a good thing to strengths and endorsement of controlling illegal content and I'm really talking about illegal contents here.  I do not like to use expressions like fake news or even problematic or hateful content because this should be about illegal content.  Now, if illegal content cannot be removed from the platforms, that is a huge number.  If you don't have endorsements measures that enable you to remove that illegal content, that should be changed.  At the same time and I end on that.  If we enact these laws, we should make very clear platforms should be obliged to offer effective (inaudible)  So for example, if someone has his or her content taken down, they should be easily able to addressed platform and say and argue you wrongfully remove that content.  This is protectd by freedom of speech.  See give me an heavy to change this.  If this is not past of the law and it's not really effectively part of the German law, then I would see this as a major drawback and thank you.

>> Thank you, Matthias.  From your last name, I think I just remember because rhyme from indough policia.  There's a website which it name stop it is ‑‑ to identify the wrong news.  Because in inDenisia, every day we can see in our what's app people share something, information content without knowing the legality or throughness of this information.  Maybe we can have a question from one lady first and then second one.  Please.

>> Hello.  And thank you for those remarks.  I was wondering maybe?  Is more directd to Matthias.  ‑‑

>> Sorry.  You can identify yourself.

>> You talked about SDGs home and I think you probably might be following discussions going on at the youlevel about the digital summer act.  That might be contradictory to some extent, some local laws or national laws.  I wasgist wanting to get your pointf view on that and what you think will be the word for this activity.

>> Okay.  I have to be a little humble here.  Yes, I am trying to follow discussions about digta services, but there is no draft that we can really talk about.  There's a lot of discussions going on.  And I would reiterate what I just said.  If we come out with ideas of how to control this, we have to make sure that the users have enough informations to corn test their decision set made on platforms.  This is our cor function of such a law.  From what I understand and maybe you know more about this from what I understand, there's also the discussion now starting with we should shedd liability privileges from the take down idea.  You know?  And make platforms and companies let's call it more liable for the content they have on their platforms.  I'm doubtful that this will be a possible solution to the problem we are facing because again, I'm a big critic of the way companies like Facebook and Google/YouTube behave.  At the same time, we have to appreciate that they opened (inaudible) of communication that we did not have before.  And we do not want to destroy those.  So I can make only this quite, you know, diffused statement that we have to look at closely whenever there's a proposition being done whether that (?)to balance that we envision.  It's not zero helpful, but this is a state of the discussion I think we're in right now.

>> Hello.  I am from Napal.  I will share a case that happened in Napal.  So what happened in Jappal is there was this singer who sang a song about the current production happening in Napal.  They didn't go and didn't ask faithbook to pull down the song, but they went individually with the police to the person singing it down and changed the song and dead is him to run load it again.  So things are working in a different way in a lot much the recess and the problem is the same.  There is a lack of definition in between the illegal content and the rest.  So that's the best thing to do‑for‑the government.  It's easy.  And apart from that, if you look at the whole dynamics of south Asia, south Asia to be very ‑‑ we don't go for service.  I mean to say they will call if there is some policies going on.  They're probably calling a few expert.  Much and they're either politically biased either ‑‑ they have their own regions.  So that is the reason policy don't come out in a proper one.  I think the best solution is multi‑stakeholderism or practices all about democracy.  It's a democracy.  Right?  It is a democratic policy.  Our government and a part of the region we know in closing.  We close everything.  When we have to do a meeting, we'll go somewhere in a room and do it rather than opening it up.  That is a problem.  Apart from that, there is no definition.  All the cone tent, if they feel it is uncomfortable, they label it illegal.  That is hitting all these things.  I am a journalist and I work my right.  So for 17 years, I strongly believe that except for the content that is really done by a news agency that turns out to be wrong, there is no such thing as fake news.  For news to become a news, there is standards and procedures.  Right?  For any information it can be not a news.  I strongly believe in this because I went through the process and I think we from the Civil Society from the groom, we need to work (inaudible)  There is certainordination that is supposed to take care of it.  So this is the thing.  We are jumping up everything and we are in a mess.  Just because U.S., and they say fake news, fake news, fake news and is it was there.  This information was there.  And we don't realize this.  I think a high time has come in when you start working on the basic problems that we have especially in terms of information dissemination and how information should be valued, how information to be categorized.  Only then can we reach out for successful policies.  Do you make best mechanism to control all the activities.  Thank you.

>> Thank you very much.  Very good perspective from Napal.  I would like to ask Irene if you have some comments?  This is about terminology and lack of definition.  Is it fair to say fake news with the terminology fakeinize?  What do you think?

>> I think as I mentioned in my opening statement, I think that term is very problem attic and I do agree that if proceeded, President Trump's is (inaudible)  As more and more people get rejected and let the speed of inactivity isn't accompanied with an increase in digital literacy.  It becomes it's been used for a number of ‑‑ a ride changing content and also first misleading.  But actually, I wanted to get him to get started on this because he mentioned the southeast region, they have enacted fake news laws or recognize called online false hoods and I think other countries in the region might follow suit.  It would issue good to hear from del mar about this.

>> CHAIRMAN:  Thank you.  I can feel you from Napal.  Actually, (inaudible) like in Europe and German where the process of legislation is clearly biased.  And I will highlight how the government or how did a lawmaker and this isn't makers triking to put fake nude.  They will put fake inside inside what may be fined as a cybersecurity.  They're approaching this from a perspective above the national security.  This is not about what we obtain or what affectness is.  They're trying to form members of cyber security policies that actually will worsen the situation.  It will be counter productive and the digital rights.  And also it is always (inaudible) of human rights and democracy.  You say ‑‑ we have the price law and everything.  It is really twisted in the experience because the state or government will say when they say it's not generalistic at all.  It is against the policy (inaudible) government.  They can put the generalists to the jail.

I want to height that what happened in Indonesia, we have hopes the digital (inaudible) and movement from the government.  But the problem is not only about opening the mind of the person who uses social media, but also have to upgrade the city out there to south secure them ‑‑ the webinized storm media.  So with the people.  So they have to call in security to the women and to the children and how to protect themselves from an attack as a way to spreading everything that was wrong.  So threaten a society that if you are spreading folks, you will go to jail.  It's not the right way.  I think you have to combine with digital secretary training.  That's what we do.  We train K9 and defenders how to protect against against surveillance from the effect.  Those kind of training, I think, those kind of materials should be done by the government and also by other CSO.  Thank you.

>> CHAIRMAN:  Okay.  You want to give the second question.

>> Because we know that in Germany it is part of EU, when the August of which define about this, I had a speech or crime contents are you considering only the Germany law or so are you considering the EU.  You choose you must think about how about the EU policy.  And for Ms. Irene, I would like to ask you because you mentioned about the Indonesia was government shut up or shut down face during the election.  They conduct this research and do you also contact the other government or steak holder and find out judge they sit down because if we see from the human right or the public speaking, this is not really good for the international because they sut down especially in the election time.  That's my personal.  Thank you.  Judge I have one more question or comment.  If not, I will give to Matthias.  I think there's a clear answer to your question in this case.  It's red enough.  The laws that regulate freedom of expression and speech are national laws.  And that is to win the U.S.  There's no Harmonization on freedom of expression in the EU.  Well are certain guidelines that you can argue will come from ‑‑ for example, the human rights framework that we apply here.  And that is basically every country obliged to follow.  Now endorsement of that is now problematic because, for example, if you go to the European code of recommend rights.  It is a sort and the silling Nat ure countries have ‑‑ you were hit by the rulings of the court, but in practice, this is more difficult than a theory.  Now where it becomes a little complicated is the overlap with the lays we already talked about.  Europe redirected that regulates intermediary liability.  What happens there is that you have one of the European scale and European level these liability rules of when you as a platform or publisher become liable for content that is on your platform.  This is a metal reggualation, but how to apply it stays national because if you argue that, for example, the contents on the platform is illegal, you do that on the grounds of measuring the law.  The platform can invoke that they can only act after you notified them.  There is this interaction fine the European and national law, but the definition of what is willing in terms of speech is international.

>> Thank you for the questions.  So the shut down actually happened in the region of PAPOA.  So it wasn't during the time of election.  In terms of the reason the government happened and shut down the Internet, the reason that was provide the was explained to the meaning that shutdown was used to restore order.  So again as he pointed out, shut downs are carried out in the name of national security and restoring public order has been put forward as one of the reasons as to why.  In terms of contacting the government, I will pass it over.  Please go ahead.

>> I will answered questions about whether we contact the government or not.  Indonesia has three times Internet shut downs.  And the second time, we contacted the government to have a meeting with the minister.  I myself with the 20 groups from Indonesia asking the government to stop the (inaudible)  I think I will be ‑‑ honestly ‑‑ what minister sky in the release, the press release.  It's about controlling the ‑‑ but actually in the meeting, it's more about restoring the socioorder ‑‑ it is during the socioconflicts.  So I would like to say that we are really re‑‑ yous case action.  We have other Groups otherwise the government.  Is it necessary to do that or not or is there a process of doing it that we can understand.  There are things regarding (inaudible) that process.  So one sided decision coming from the government.  So there is no open discussion.  We want the government to take it seriously and then right now last ‑‑ we already upped and hopefully from this process, the government will stop doings international in the future.  And then doing if they want to do it on the internet.  Thank you.

>> Just a cort comment, during that doubtdown with a lot of international media to hospital on something or they just allow it, the international pleadia they allow ‑‑ the international freedom reports.  So maybe I see a good thing there is still communication up to the highest level of the CSO in Indonesia.  Also the same situation in Europe or Germany.  I would say there's no communication happening.S a lot of Chris itism as I said by selfcoats and organizations and (inaudible) platform, but also in governments making laws that some of us see a problem thein for free speech.  There is this situation that right now, the European Commission asked France to withhold and attempt to enact a new law.  That is supposed to rule universityd credit of information on the internet and people assume this is because it is companies this is supposed to be a return.  There is a lot off ‑‑ as you know, 28 countries and 24 languages, the European level and the very comicated law making process on the European level understanding who has what meet it's a real challenge and then if you have your own positions, of course you needs to find meorganizations and other actors.  You can form but as we said, along with that, it is quite unleer what it should entile.  So there's a lot of (inaudible) discussions and this is something where the settic society is not included.  This is a challenge to find out and signed up.  The question I think was asks activity to the mennest rear and see that situation.  I think the minister said the term is not shut down of the internet, but the grow down of the Internet.  Thank you.

>> it's not shuts down.  It's showed down.  I think we still have one or two question more before we exhausted the session.  Any more comments or questions?  Or I would like to give each of the panel to give one or two final thoughts the only thing I can say is we would like to know best what to do, but we don't.  I think it became very apparent.  First of all, the discussions have to be very contextual.  So you have a different idea of what, for example, hateful for and acceptable and unacceptable.  If it's in Germany.  We have a different understanding than the better half.  We are close together in the UK we still have different ideas.  So it needs to coy task challenge that arise is that you have platforms that are noble much.  And this poses basically this problem or baba box that we are faced with and looking for global regulation, we don't have a global law making body.  You could think of the United Nations, but to assume that the united positions will have a treaty, for example, on tech and protect of speech is completely unrealistic at the moment.  So this is why, um, these discussion ‑‑ why it's so started to human up with solutions?

>> Okay.  I think the bring for the UN is also addressed by secretary general and they're opening ceremony.  This is a very difficult question to be channeld automatic and in the state level, there are still ‑‑ there's a lot of still billing big fresh on how to delegate.  It is in ICT in the whole world, I think.  So I think if we are exhausted of question and comments, I think I don't know how can I ‑‑ a lot of things have been discussed.  Evan?  Okay.

>> So I would just say evidence based research documents the way they're run around the world and handle the issue which is increasingly becoming a local problem.  And I would like to address that the involvements of Civil Society must like face net to continue to demand, transparency and accountant if governments especially as they pursue methods of shut downs and slow downs as well as sense earship and (inaudible) to conduct with fake news.  Any more?

>> DAMAR JUNIARTO:  Yeah.  Short closing.  I really like the idea of multi‑stakeholder approach, but in the reality is very lard.  This one has to be addressed.  We have to send a message to the government that (inaudible) analog in and put them looking for the solution.  I would.  The third region has the tensencey to copping each other regulation.  This is very important to have a wider monitoring wall if Malaysia start having a fake news.  And having East one.  Actually, the rest of the region we full follows.  And then we ever making an adoption based on something they think ‑‑ certs in their countries, but not following the standard of recommend right.  Well (inaudible)  That's very important to Civil Society and they send and analyze this and also monitor each other to give also support and (inaudible) and giving feedbacks or inputs to develops.

>> Thank you very much.  I would like to conclude the session and I thank the panelists and also participation of everybody here.  I hope we can take some stuff of what is hamming in some region in the world and then to give us inputs in your future endeavors.  I think.  Okay.  Thank you very much and good morning.

[APPLAUSE]

 

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