2019 IGF - MAG - Virtual Meeting - IX

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during an IGF virtual call. 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, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 


>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Good afternoon, morning and evening, ladies and gentlemen.

It's time to start the MAG meeting.  Just a reminder that, usual reminder the meeting is being recorded.  There is a transcription, and also a summary report.  And these will all be made available on the Web site after the meeting.  So with that, let me hand it over to the Chair, Lynn, to start the meeting.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: As Chengetai said, good morning, after noon, evening to everyone, always sounds like the start of a skit.  But just a couple quick comments as you have seen on the mail list, I'm actually in New York City, at the UN for the science technology and innovation Forum, for two events, one is a side event that is organized by the Government of the UAE with the support of their permanent missions here in New York City and of course with DESA and that is focused on IGF 2019, but also looking to share experiences across the IGF and the SGI Forum, which is in fact the purpose of the panel that I'm on at the SGI Forum (background noise) with the closing panel.

I was actually here for the first STI Forum four years ago (background noise) and was on one of the two opening panels as well, specifically because they were interested in learning from the IGF in terms of sort of annual meeting preparations, but also intersessional activities and what might be done to keep the momentum going between the annual meetings.  The STI Forum is part of a technology mechanism (background noise) in the UN which is all part of the SDG 2030 goals.

I think it's very good news that they are wanting to learn from, share experiences, and I can provide a full report at our next meeting.  On the margins of the meeting yesterday, Rudolf and I in fact met with a individual from the Secretary General's office, and also with a individual from the HLPDC Secretariat, who is located here in New York, to understand what the latest status was with respect to HLPDC and report activities.

I think there was a confirmation that in fact HLPDC report will be sent publicly week of 10th June, which is at the same time that it is being sent to the UN Secretary General.  I know in the past that wasn't quite clear, clearly it's the Secretary General's panel and it's up to him to determine the disposition of the report.  But the office has confirmed that in fact it will be posted publicly.

So I know there were some questions on that, and I think that supports some conversations that EuroDIG was looking to have.  They said the report is expected to be largely as was previewed during the MAG meeting, and anticipating that the Secretary General will look for broad consultation on the report about the same time they are quite careful to say that he of course has a whole range of options from range from not moving the report forward to the UN system, moving a version of the report forward, and of course moving it informally or formally through the UN system and various reviews.

We won't know that until the Secretary General has seen the report and advanced it.  The note is being sent to the MAG as the report will mention the IGF quite explicitly.  I think naturally, they are looking to understand what the IGF community thinks of the report, and in fact all the possible scenarios I guess is probably the right word, all the possible options not simply the IGF plus plus report.  But we have made it clear, both Rudolf and I that, there has been no decision, no discussion within the MAG yet with respect to what the MAG might care to do, either during the Berlin IGF or in fact possible online consultations between the report being launched and November, that in fact we still require further discussion with the MAG and the community.  It was mostly just to get a update so that we can continue following, and minimize any last minute surprises with respect to desires of the MAG and reflecting the desires of the Secretary General as well.

I'll stop there and see if there are any comments or reflections.  The Secretariat and I are both interested in comments with respect to what is the best way to have this discussion with the MAG, when, we obviously have our meeting coming up in several weeks in June.  We could perhaps set aside some time there to advance that.  We recognize of course that we have a really full program ourselves.  Let me see if there are any comments or requests for the floor.  We are still using the normal speaking queue process.  I'm not seeing any requests.

>> Lynn, this is Veni, I'm sorry, I don't have   

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: That is fine.  Go ahead.

>> I'm sorry, I may have missed, but is someone going to talk to us in Berlin about it, so since you say it is going to be the week after that, we won't get any updates.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: I don't know someone will be available or not.  I believe they are actually working on a launch, not simply sending the report to the Secretary General, so I suspect they are all fairly tied up that week.  We could see if we could get either Yovan or Ambassador Gill to give us another update.  We can certainly ask.  They can come in by phone.

>> VENI:  That will be good, because they will be there.  They will definitely have the final draft by then.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Yes, for sure.  Chengetai, do you have any insight into that or any thoughts?

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: We can get one of them to come through by phone or virtually.  But I doubt they are going to tell us any of the details, because they will wait until the launch, because they can't give us information and tell us to keep it quiet before the launch.  It is an open meeting.  That is unlikely.  But we can always ask, yeah.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Let's talk to them, and think, the one additional piece of information we did get yesterday, they said that it's likely that the report would have, with respect to the three, I'm not sure if they are scenarios or options or, that there was probably more detail in the briefing we had during our last MAG meeting than there will be in the report.  So if people want to go back and read the transcript, I think that would be quite useful.  But it's a good suggestion, Veni.  We will reach out and see if there is anything that would be helpful to share.

Then with that, let me turn to agenda item 3, oh, sorry, in my rush to get started here, I forgot to formally adopt the agenda.  Let me just ask right now if there are any other requests for AOB, the agenda has been out for some time, with no requests.  Let me see if there are any other.

>> This is Rudolf, Lynn.  I'm just about agenda item 5, we were talking before, I thought that we were in agreement that we would not have a formal point on the agenda on the theme, but that I would rather inform the MAG about what state of the discussion is at the moment.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Yes, that is what that item is supposed to address, is your comments on what the state ...

>> Okay.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thanks for clarifying.  Not seeing any other requests in the chat room or in the speaking queue.  I will, call the agenda approved.  Chengetai, you have the floor.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you very much, Lynn.  A few quick updates, CSTD is happening this week in Geneva.  I gave a presentation to the CSTD reporting in on how we are accomplishing the CSTD working group recommendations and also what the Secretary General stated in his address to the IGF 2018 meeting.  A quick reminder about the deadlines on the IGF Web site, there is the travel support, and also for the MAG renewal, so those deadlines are June 30, but it's very good to get with the community and see those discussions are happening.

As you should be aware that I sent out the links for the Open Forums and Dynamic Coalitions that we received.  So the MAG members, you can view them, and they are public as well, and also for the IGF village and for the IGF village that those were actually the most that we have received for the IGF village.  We will try and fit in more than just those top 51 I think it is.  We are going to try and do some hot seating as well so one organization is not given a booth for the whole three days but they can be given for one day and then another organization comes for the next day, and in that way, we can fit more people in, and it's also a problem sometimes because some organizations come with very few people, and they are not able to man those booths all the time.  So that would help.

The other thing, as you know, the workshop evaluation closed on Sunday, and 85 around about 85 percent of the MAG members gave their evaluations, which is very good and very high comparatively to last year.  So only 7 did not, and 3 did it partially.  They did not finish.  But those are still very good numbers.

Last week as well, there was the SEDIG event, the southeastern European Dialogue on Internet Governance, which I also attended and I think it was very well attended by a whole range of stakeholders, governments or society, even parliamentarians attended that as well.  I think they are doing very good work there at SEDIG.  I think that is all the updates I have on this agenda item.  Thank you.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Chengetai.

One thing to confirm for the MAG members is that I think based on the discussion we have had at past MAG meetings that the open consultation day for the next MAG meeting will remain on day one.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, that is correct.  Open consultation is going to be on day one.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Just so that there is no open question remaining with the MAG.  Are there any further comments or    I see a question in the chat room regarding Day Zero event requests planned to be shared as well?

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, we will share the Day Zero events.  We just gave them less priority, because these are the ones require a little bit more coordination from us.  But we will share them within the coming week.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Mary had a question prior to that, which is probably for each community to decide, but how will each community meet to decide on their choice of MAG Chair for 2020.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: I've been in some of the discussions within the group discussions within the MAG and some of them are meeting in Berlin.  So that is a good idea to meet, if you need a physical meeting.  You can also meet virtually if not all your members are there, and we can provide you with a Webex room, if you want to meet and discuss at any time.  It doesn't even have to be in the Berlin meeting, but the Berlin meeting is an opportune time since most of the MAG members will be there.  Of course, we do expect that you have consulted with your communities as well, just to get their input.  I hope that answers the question.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: If not, Mary, if you can come back in.  But I think it answered the question as posed and Mary said thank you.  We will move on to item 4 then, which is initial results of the IGF 2019 workshop evaluation.  Chengetai, you have the floor.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Okay.  Thank you.  I'm not going to go very much into the results.  It's just that  

>>   I'm sorry, Chengetai, one item on the previous topic.  Yesterday I was at the conference in New York, and there was Internet Governance mentioned quite a while.  I spoke there mentioning what we do at the UN, etcetera.  But it is interesting that there was like a overall topic of SDGs and Internet Governance.  This is the first time I ever see a conference outside of the UN, like well attended conference with lots of people like the C.O. of Jigsaw, Google Jigsaw, and today there were American candidates for the U.S. presidency who are also coming to speak.  They talk about Internet Governance and SDGs.  I find it very encouraging, because the more people talk about those issues, the better we are with regards to both the IGF but also the global understanding of the importance of Internet Governance.  This is just in addition to what you just said.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Great.  Can you send me and Deniz more information on that so we can keep track?

>> I'll send a link to the list (background noise) because it is webcast and it continues today.  People may want to tune in and watch but also see what happens after (overlapping speakers).

>> Thank you.  Carry on.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: David Kirkpatrick is the individual who started, used to be a journalist with I think it was southern New York times or Wall Street Journal.  He's also been active in a lot of the World Economic Forum activities.  I was on a couple of committees or panels with him.  In fact, at the last World Economic Forum meeting we spent quite a bit of time talking about the IGF and Internet Governance, and the various activities there.  I'm really glad that paid off, because he was extremely interested in it, and hopefully, we can follow up with a number of the organizations and companies that are there as well, part of outreach and bringing in additional and new voices into the IGF.  That was great.

>> Thanks, Lynn.  Thanks for reaching out, I talked with him extensively also.  It is good to see, guys, a lot of companies are participating in this, and they are usually companies that never come to IGF or any UN related meetings.  But I think we managed to raise some interest among them, the feedback I got back from my presentation, and I'll continue today.  I'll let you know what happens.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Chengetai?  Thank you.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, one final thing about the side event that is happening today on the SDI Forum hosted by the German Government, DESA and the UAE, I think Hannah sent the webcast link, so people will be able to follow on.  I think there was a request, I think it was Timae if I'm not mistaken who asked for the link.  The link is here.  I'll ask Luis if he can put it in the chat also.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: That is a link for the side event or link for the closing panel?

>> Lynn, let me clarify that.  This is Deniz.  That link is probably for the entire science technology Forum.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: That is what Hannah said.

>> The side event is in a small room.  Unfortunately, as of today, we won't have remote participation.  But DESA will be sharing the notes shortly with the IGF Secretariat, and we will give updates from the side event highlights.  Sorry for that confusion.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: No, no, it was just a response to the side event.  That is fine.  For the results of the evaluations, according to the schedule, the Secretariat is working on them, and then at the, on the 17th close of business on the 17th, we will be sharing with more detailed results on the evaluations.  But this morning, I shared a link just giving the evaluations and the marks.  First of all, the overall marks going down and for each of these sub themes so people can go in and look at them.

I don't know whether this is a good idea just to touch on how we should plan to proceed, I mean once we have gotten the breakdowns and etcetera, we will make a determination on which ones, according to the document, cutoff point around 80 percent which will automatically get in and then the MAG members can pick and choose the rest to fill in.  But of course, I mean that is up to the decision of the MAG once they look at the results.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: If I can clarify, the 80 percent has never been automatic, right?  There is obviously they are rated very highly, there is a strong expectation that they would   

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, exactly.  That is why we look at them and look at 80 percent and we see whether or not it's a true reflection of what we want to have.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: The MAG members will do that.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, the MAG members, on the program, because again also this year, we are looking at workshops that fit together.  So it's not automatic by any means.  But it is a starting point for the discussion that we look at them and see how we can adjust and fit into the schedule.  We are also working on this plan that was discussed during the last MAG meeting of having a introductory session of each of the themes, joint introductory session for the three themes, and then having two streams of each stream going throughout the days and then in the end, having a session at the end that brings it all together, and you can have a summary, and people can go home with something more tangible coming out of the streams.

We will share a draft template before the meeting on this idea, so you can look at it a couple of days before the meeting, and have more discussion on it when we are in Berlin.  I'm sorry I can't say that much about it.  I don't know, Eleonora, do you want to say more?

>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Chengetai, hi, everyone.  I wouldn't have very much to add personally, except that I was in the working group on workshop processes meeting the day before yesterday.  I think they had a very dynamic discussion about their experience evaluating and they may also have some suggestions for the process moving forward.  So sorry to sort of, you know, throw the ball back to the group.  But I think, I'm sure that they will want to intervene.  (overlapping speakers).

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Jutta, you have the floor.

>> Thank you, Lynn.  Thank you, Eleonora.  Of course, we had that meeting on Monday talking about firstly the experiences of the working group members with assessing proposals, and secondly trying to draw up some recommendations at least how the way forward could go, and first of all, more or less anybody said that they had the feeling that the quality of the proposals had improved for this year.  Also there were still some that were quite rated low.

Then we discovered some of the proposals that had done copy and paste, and we referred, so it means also they were addressing completely different themes and topics.  They still did copy and paste for example when describing parts of their proposal, which was, didn't matter when it comes to relevance to the theme and to governance, where copy and paste would not be appropriate, but of course, it might be possible to do copy and paste when you describe how you will facilitate interaction with the participants to the session.

When we referred that question to each of the three theme groups with MAG members then to discuss whether a certain proposal if it's called high quality, if it's still taken in consideration for being accepted, when there was a huge amount of copy and paste content in the proposal, this should be discussed in the three thematic groups.

Then for the consideration of these more or less 20 percent that should go, that should also be accepted, also they probably do not meet a certain threshold.  Still, the idea was that high quality comes first, and second criterion should be to avoid repetition and redundancy in the whole program.  So we all faced in all three of the theme groups that there were lots of proposals that were addressing quite similar issues.  And if it's only two that were more or less in parallel, this could be solved by a merger.  But if it's, which is the case in some of the three buckets, if it's five, six or seven proposals that more or less all address the same issues, but from different angles.  The question was whether the MAG could consider that these were all put together and try to give the theme a main session in the whole program.

We didn't know whether this could work.  But it is still in, with a purpose that we don't have too much duplication in the program, that we don't have sessions that address one by one the same theme.  This was one idea that the working group came up with.  So, yes, let me have a look at my notes.  (background noise).

There was also the issue that some of the proposals seem to be addressing especially regional aspects of Internet Governance.  For example, legislation with regards to freedom of speech in a certain country or certain area, and the question there was whether these proposals could either be referred to be dealt with in regional or national IGFs firstly, before they even go to the global IGF, or whether it could be tried that we have kind of a matchmaking process saying, if you want to talk about freedom of speech legislation in India, for example, or I do think it was data and privacy in India, are there stakeholders from other countries, from other regions in the world where the same process is under way, legislation with regard to a certain aspect of Internet Governance, and whether the workshop session could be enriched with input from other regions.  So these are two options for these session proposals that were highly addressing only one country or one region, which members of the working group felt they were not quite be placed, well placed in the global IGF, but still they could either be referred to in national or regional initiative or enriched by stakeholders from other regions.

This is more or less what I can summarize at this point.  And what we would need to have these group discussions for the three main themes would definitely be a guidance, how many, the number of sessions we can fill in order to then decide if we know, okay, it's only this amount of sessions, then the threshold needs to be set higher, and also the debate on these 20 or whatever, 25 percent that we can fill up is different, if we know we have less space or more space.  That's all I can report.  Thank you.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Jutta.  Let me see if we can move one or two of them forward a little bit, and I'll ask Chengetai to come in, see if there is any additional information he wants to share.  Rudolf, do you mind if we continue with this discussion for a minute and then go to you or was your point directly to Jutta's comments?  We can hear you, Rudolf.

>> I wanted to address one expectation management point that, there will not be three rooms available for these breakout sessions but we will have to organize ourselves in one large room going to three corners of this room.  That is just the only thing I wanted to add.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: That's good.  In fact, if the bulk of the work can take place before we get to Berlin, that is even better.  Let's talk about that in a moment.  But Jutta, to your points, if I get them in the right order, if there are two that are quite similar or rated highly or even if one is rated highly and the other one not so high, but has some good complementary points or even opposite points of view, then I think the thematic groups can certainly suggest mergers.

To your second point about there being possibly a number of submissions that were interesting and/or rated highly, and perhaps crafting a main session around that, I certainly think that is a possibility.  We would need to look at the topic and make sure the topic was of broad enough interest and appropriate enough interest to the whole community, but if there are that many workshop proposals, that is probably a given anyway.  But I do think that is a possible resolution, if you will.

To the last point, that may require a little bit more discussion.  It's up to the thematic working groups to determine whether or not an individual point of view or regional point of view is substantive enough or important enough that it be shared in a global conference, then the thematic working group can certainly determine that.  It might be appropriate that other regions are invited in, so that they can have a discussion or debate about different approaches, or in fact that some of the individuals from that proposal are perhaps recommended to someone, without having the specifics, I think it's hard to be more specific.  But I think your kind of approach in thinking about it is in line with past practice, and I think in line with putting together the sort of program the MAG is trying to put together and expectations.

One thing we want to do and we can ask Chengetai to come in with more specifics, we had working with the workshop evaluation group prepared a process document that talked through the time line and the expectations, I sent that again to the MAG earlier this week, or maybe it was the weekend, because I think we are now approaching steps 3 through 6.

We wanted to make sure that the MAG was clear on what the task was and the expectations were, so we can maybe ask the Secretariat to put that document up on the, in the Webex room, starting with point 3, to see if there are any further questions, and while we are doing that, Chengetai, is there any other high level overview you would like to give with respect to the overall scheduling or calendaring?  I want to make sure you had time to complete that.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: For the scheduling, if we have, if we assign each theme two rooms, and we have the topic that we talk about that would mean that we have 60 overall workshop slots.

That is assuming that each workshop slot is an hour and a half.  I mean, there are some requests for workshops which are just an hour long.  But let's just give it the maximum for an hour and a half, that means that we will have 60 slots.  That would mean of course, this is also another thing up to discussion, that if we divide the slots equally among the themes, that would mean 20 slots for each theme.  Again, this may be up for discussion, because we did have more submissions, all submissions were not equal, of equal number.

So, for the initial conversation we will be looking at 20 slots per theme.  That would take up six rooms in the meeting.  And the other four rooms will be filled up with open forums, Dynamic Coalition meetings, etcetera.  And also this is    I beg your pardon?

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: And the main session.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, and the main sessions, exactly.  This is in line of concentrating the program, and not having too many events going on at the same time, which was one of the recommendations that we have been hearing from the community.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: To be clear, noting that, that means there are still ten parallel tracks.  In the past there have been 11.  While the number may seem low, it is not that substantive a difference.  What Chengetai is proposing also allows two workshop streams, if you will, per major theme.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Those themes will be based in that room so people don't have to rush across the venue to go from one workshop room to another if they are following the digital inclusion team which also was another issue that people commented on in past meetings.  So all the digital inclusion sessions will be happening in two rooms which will be basically next to each other.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Chengetai.  We will come back in a moment, see if there is anything else to add.  But Mary, you have the floor.

>> Thank you.  Can you hear me?

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: We can, yes.

>> Thank you, good afternoon, all.  I want a little clarification, reading through the document published now on the workshop evaluation, I want to understand what designation is because it will help make decision, is it division in the evaluation of all MAG members that evaluated that workshop proposal, one, and again which is better, the higher or the lower deviation.  Thank you.  Maybe Luis can help us.

>> Hi, thank you.  Yes, so the deviation is the standard deviation, the statistical concept of standard deviation between all the evaluations, by all MAG members have evaluated a given proposal.  So if one proposal have been evaluated 15 times, we take the 15 averages which are rated, we get the 15 averages, we get the average of that, and the standard deviation of those scores, those 15 scores.  That is the deviation.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: It came into the process some years ago, when Mike Nelson who was a MAG member at the time made I think a very salient point that if there is a high standard deviation, it probably means there are very divergent views on the particular topic, which can of course signal that it would be a interesting topic for debate, in that there were very contrasting views, which is why we started including it in the report out.

>> Mary:  Thank you, Lynn.  That is what I wanted to understand, if I'm to put it in perspective deviation which one is better, the lower or the higher, if decide to draw a line or 20 percent, to consider deviation is taken into consideration [inaudible] particular proposal, or if to go ahead without considering the deviation, because I think that if we have high deviation, it means that maybe we have to look at that evaluation properly to know whether actually [inaudible] I'm sorry, I don't know whether I made my point clear.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: You did.  The way it has been used in the past would be if there was a high deviation, high standard deviation, that again signals a really wide range of views as MAG members evaluated that report, so it was sort of a signal to go in and look at it and say maybe this is in fact a really important topic, if the views are so divergent in terms of its support.  It could be some people thought it was a great submission and others thought it was not a great submission.  So it's not an immediate factor to rule something in or rule something out, but more a trigger to go away and look at it thoughtfully because perhaps it was an interesting topic.

>> Thank you very much.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Mary.  We have Jutta in the queue.  Jutta.

>> Thank you, Lynn, for giving me the floor.  You just explained what I wanted to say, that we can take the standard deviation for general and say yes, if it's high, then it goes further or not, and you explained that very well.  So I withdraw from my slot to speak.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Jutta.  Rudolf, you have the floor.

>> Thank you.  I just want to put a little question mark behind the paradigm of saying we have 60 slots for the workshops and all the rest are other initiatives, because this at the end will be a picture that we do not see yet as a complete picture.  So we can start on this working hypothesis, but what we want is a good program and if we have let's say 70 very good workshop proposals that we want to retain, we would have to think about perhaps restricting other formats.

So I would not feel comfortable in having this as a decided rule that cannot be deviated any further.  We can start on this working hypothesis, but we should, in my view, not bind ourselves already at this stage where we do not have yet the full picture to some kind of fixed number.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: That's correct.  It is just a place to start and also the 60 could be, we could in fact manage to fit 70.  It depends which workshops are chosen, and also we do have a spare room here that we can also fill in, if we want to.  So we do have 11 rooms to work with according to the agreements that we have.  We can reduce those 11 rooms to react to the public comments.  But it's really up to the MAG to see what happens.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Chengetai, could you also comment on Timae's question, which is how many sessions are we looking at overall, Open Forum, main sessions and the workshops.  Chengetai, are you on mute?

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, I'm doing a quick calculation now.  (chuckles).

>> I can help if you would like.  It's Eleonora.  We did share the lists of eligible sessions so far, so we would have 37 eligible open forums, 17 eligible D.C. sessions.  I think we are projecting 6NRI sessions, and there will be four BPF sessions, according to each BPF.  We should emphasize that eligible does not mean automatic acceptance into the program.  We are just, we have just put out the sessions that meet the requirements that we stated when submitters were making their requests.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Will vary depending on the timing, because all these sessions are not of a standard time, there is 90 minute sessions, there is an hour session.  So yes, there is some leeway there.

It is not actually a question of space per se, because the space is there.  It is just how many sessions do we want.  So, yeah.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Another qualification for all the sessions, particularly the open forums, ought to be are they meeting the goal that was established for the open forums, which was initially to help us bring in policymakers, governments, and IGOs, because they enrich in the overall IGF experience, and I think we need to make sure that they are meeting that goal, and as well, that they are also working on improvements to their own set of submissions, the same way we are with workshop submissions, so that they are very much on topic, that they are on topical issues, they are not organization presentations per se.  I think we need to put a strong quality filter, if you will, on those as well.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: In the draft schedule we are working on, I didn't share it because again, as Rudolf mentioned that once you share something, people think that it's the thing that we are going with.  No, we are just trying out several models as we go along, I mean not all of the open forums make it into the schedule, not all of the D.C.s, etcetera.  There are cuts across the board.  But we are still working with various permutations of these, to find out what actually fits best according to our objectives.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Let's go back to the document that was up a few minutes ago, the workshop process evaluation, post evaluation and themes, and start with section 3, which actually states that this Friday, the Secretariat will share their analysis.  They are going to set a cutoff line at 80 percent of the slots that we think are available per theme, which we have just heard was 20.  That first 80 percent is not an automatic in.  It is a strong expectation because of course they have been rated very highly, but we need to do additional sorts for redundancy, diversity, issue coverage, the overall thematic program, etcetera.

We are expecting the thematic working groups to have some online sessions or an online session, at least once between the 18th and the 24th of May.  So that during that time, those thematic working groups should resolve any issues which are related to content duplication, possible mergers, that sort of thing.  Specifically, it was to allow those thematic working groups to share their initial line up of 20 workshops with the MAG, on the 24th of May, so that the MAG has time to review those submissions ahead of our virtual MAG meeting on the 29th of May.

That was meant to set up the bulk of the program, as we enter Berlin, so that we can do any final refinements there, but also focus on the main sessions and any of the topping and tailing sessions as well.  The topping and tailing sessions we need to talk about a little more, because I think there is a expectation that they might be main sessions with interpretation in the larger room.  Certainly one way to open up the discussions and to pull in those other disciplines that the MAG clearly wants to bring in and certainly the Secretary General exhorted us to would be through those main sessions, by having some futuristic thinkers or philosophers or social scientists or something come in and set up almost a visionary approach if you will to the topic, that we can then drive, then drive through the discussions.

This all requires a lot more kind of thinking and talking.  Maybe there is an opportunity to have another workshop session that really just does do an introduction to the topic, and relevant organizations and definitions, norms, whatever we think would be helpful to people coming in almost maybe with a kind of newcomers approach even to the themes.  These are all things we need to think about.  But the first step of course is getting the core program agreed with the MAG.

That is the work that needs to take place over the next couple of weeks.  We have a question as to whether or not we need to set aside breakout time during the core IGF meeting, or whether or not we could in fact ask those breakout meetings to take place either online, virtually ahead of the MAG meeting, or perhaps before the MAG meeting on day one or lunchtime of day one, precisely so that we can actually bring some of these comments if necessary into the open consultations.  I think that's one of the things the Secretariat and I are struggling with, is with respect to pulling together the draft agenda for the Berlin meeting.

Jutta and Rudolf, you are still in the queue or not, I'm not sure if those are new hands up.  Let me see if there is any   

>>   No, old hand.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Arsene had a question which is we asked the Secretariat to help support setting up the thematic group meetings or Webex calls, and perhaps they can actually kick off a doodle poll, since they are aware of who is in each one of the thematic working groups.  I had asked the Secretariat to make sure because there are no self appointed leaders at this point in the thematic working groups.  I'd ask the Secretariat to track those working groups and provide all the support that is necessary.

>> Sure, we can do that.  We will set up the doodle polls.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you.  Carlos had a question, so he is just, yeah, Carlos, the comment you posted under digital inclusion, three overall issues, that is exactly the sort of discussion to take up within the thematic working group.  We had also said that when the MAG gets together we weren't expecting the full MAG to redo the work of the thematic working groups, but that we should all look at the outputs of the thematic working groups and identify whether or not there are any horizontal issues as Timae pointed out previously, that will serve as a good indicator of what are some of the main sessions we might actually pull up.  If there is something glaring which we think is missing in terms of a topic, that would be something which a full MAG review might bring up.  But again we are counting heavily on a thematic working groups to build those individual streams, if you will, under each theme.

Mary, I think each working group can kind of determine who might lead it.  There was no kind of appointment process.  It may be obvious, if some of them were involved in the original thematic descriptions.  But it really is up to each working group, in the best Internet tradition.

So, that's the kind of key points of the program.  Let me see if there are any questions or Chengetai, if there is anything you want to add or anything you think needs further explanation?

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: No, not from my side.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Paul is asking if there is a existing mailing list for each thematic working group.  I'm guessing there probably isn't but that you would set one up.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Actually I think there is.  But I'll just remind.

>> Hi, Chengetai.  Maybe I can say this, there are three mailing lists for the themes, one for each theme.  However, this mailing list are for the general discussion, yes, soon we should create now three different ones for the different working groups to work, I mean after evaluations.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, that is true because the other mailing list has got everybody in it.  So if we restrict the mailing list to those ones that actually evaluated the workshops, then yes, we do need to set up new ones.  We will send those out today or tomorrow morning.  Yes.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: To clarify something, if somebody didn't submit an evaluation, but they were assigned to one group, presumably you would keep them in that thematic working group?


>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: I think we need to do that, even if they didn't submit, I think we still expect them to continue to participate as MAG members and share their views on the program, recognizing that that will be a little difficult to do if they haven't reviewed all the proposals, but I don't think they should be excluded.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: We will just use the initial list that we had created.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Good.  Any other questions on the process and where we are at this stage?  Then if not, let's leave that again the Secretariat, I, all your MAG colleagues are available if there are any other questions over the next few weeks.

Let's move to item 5 then, which is IGF 2019, we had asked Rudolf the Host Country to provide a status on the overarching theme.  Rudolf, you have the floor.

>> Yes, thank you, Lynn.  In light of the discussion that we had at the physical meeting in Geneva in April, we were considering and thinking about how to change or how to adapt the model in a way that all the points that had been raised there could be taken on board.  One thing was quite clear after some discussion that we would skip any subtitle, because there were too many like ideas and directions where that had gone.  So we start with the three, the three core and we changed just the word Web, because it seemed that that was the main point of concern for many MAG members, so now it's one world, one net, one vision, getting rid of the Web, that was for many MAG members a concern that it would not be global enough, it was a application on the net and so forth.

So now we are starting with this model, and we have also taken it up in the invitation letters that should go out every day to the perm reps in New York, the invitation letter to the Day Zero ministerial meeting.  Thank you.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Rudolf.

Are there any comments, clarifications, questions from MAG members?

There is a question from Arsene, it's one world, one net, one vision.  All right.  Not seeing any requests from the floor, I want to thank Rudolf and Daniela for taking a lot of the comments on board from the MAG.  Much appreciated.

The item 6, main session discussion.  I think there we were just expecting a general discussion, I mean again for kind of overall planning purposes, we have some additional flexibility with interpreters, German Government are using freelance interpreters.  So we are not bound quite so much by the two, three hour session.  We do have some flexibility with both the number of sessions and the time of the sessions.

Chengetai or Rudolf, is there anything that we want to share at this point in time with respect to opening and closing ceremonies?  I'll give you a moment to think about that.  And then I think we need to really think about how we want to use these main sessions, I think we said that there are certainly enough slots, once we, quote, set aside the opening ceremony and the Opening Session, closing session, Closing Ceremony, there are still, I did the calculation last time, but enough slots to cover any main sessions per theme, even if we wanted to make the topping and tailing sessions main theme sessions as well, and possibly even for a couple of others, and of course, we usually have a request from the NRIs for a main session as well.

I think Chengetai, we need to work on a draft schedule listing what all those are, so we are clear on the number of slots and what we are thinking about with respect to the topping and tailing sessions.  I think we had decided to postpone this discussion until, in terms of specific topics for the main sessions, until we had the results of the workshop evaluations and the proposed thematic streams from the working groups.

So I think this is planned to be a fairly substantive piece of work at the Berlin meeting.  I would encourage the MAG working groups as you are going through your thematic programs, if there are some topics that you think would be really compelling or some particular points of views as a main session to note that, that would certainly help kick off the session.

But at this point, we don't have, in past years we had said we will have one for business, one for technology, one for Civil Society, kind of concerns.  We moved away from that this year, and we are looking to build on the thematic streams that are coming out of the workshop submission process, which is why we are doing this sort of serially if you will.

I hope that was clear.  (chuckles).

Chengetai, is there anything you want to add or anything you can help clarify?

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: We do have a draft schedule, but, yeah, let's do a little bit more, look more into the workshop schedules, and then we can share it, as long as people remember that this is just a draft, and it's a starting point, a suggestion.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: It's more just kind of clarify the main buckets of main sessions, if you will, and the process that we are actually going to use to fulfill them.  I think the main sessions are as they have always been really an excellent way to do some significant outreach, pull some speakers in that we wouldn't normally have at an IGF.  I think we could perhaps do some more visionary approaches, visionary is not quite the right word, but something that sets into context what we are doing, why it's important, and it would be nice if it also gave a sort of sense of urgency as well, to get everybody fired up, and working to advance these topics.  We will do a little more work on that particular part of our planning for the Berlin meeting.  Are there any questions, comments, reflection on the main session or any of the other programming components?

>> From me, Rudolf, just two or three comments.  One is that on the opening ceremony, we are still planning with Chancellor, and that we are trying to reach out to high level people from other stakeholder groups, and we are also trying to get the Secretary General on board.

The second thing I wanted to mention is that we think it would be a good idea to have the parliamentarians meeting or the legislators meeting as the American friends prefer to call it, in the main session format, because of the translation on day 4.

And last point, I like the discussion going on in the chat room about reference to some British rock bands.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Rudolf.  Any other comments or updates on the high level ministerial section as well, again just to make sure that these are in front of the MAG as we move forward.

>> RUDOLF:  I think it's important and I make that mistake before, to be clear in the language, it's high level multistakeholder event.  Of course, there will be a, some kind of ministerial segment, but the bulk of the meeting on Day Zero will be multistakeholder, so we want to have high level people from all the stakeholder groups involved, not only the ministers but really also the technical community, Civil Society and the business.  We are about to, or we are in the process of thinking about whom to invite, and open for proposals in this regard.  But that is all I can say.  It will take two thirds or a long morning or two thirds of a day on Day Zero, because we really want to have a thorough and deep reflection amongst these high level people.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Rudolf.  Noted with the terminology.  Any comments or questions from the MAG?  One of the things Chengetai and I were kicking around with respect to part of the closing session was, in the past we have had this long two hour open mic and one hour Closing Ceremony.  We certainly need time for the formal Closing Ceremony.  The last meeting we left it open because of the Secretary General's comments, because of the Paris call, thinking that that might generate a fair amount of discussion amongst the community, and in fact it didn't really.

So one of the things we are looking at is splitting the two hour Closing Ceremony into two possible sessions, one where we might in fact have a report out from, as sort of the in process development of key messages on the various themes to the community, and then one hour of a more traditional open mic so that we kind of bind that again.

I know there are some other kind of thoughts out there, that maybe we split that and have a open mic session at the beginning of the week.  I think that is probably still a possibility given the leeway we have with respect to the interpreters.  But again, these are things which will all start to come together over the next few weeks, and we would expect to conclude on them in the Berlin meeting.

Jutta, you have the floor.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you, Lynn, for giving me the floor.  I was just thinking that it might be with regard to the main sessions good to report back from the Dynamic Coalition session, Dynamic Coalition call we had a few days ago, where we were talking about the suggestion that was made before that probably a joint Dynamic Coalition main session could deal with the general idea of a network of networks.  This was discussed by the Dynamic Coalitions, and there were two thoughts about this.

One was that the Dynamic Coalitions are of the feeling that there is still importance to inform people that Dynamic Coalitions are doing intersessional work.  There is still some confusion that people do think best practice forums are doing intersessional work, but DCs are not doing that.  So this impression needs some kind of correction maybe, and still Dynamic Coalitions found it reasonable to have something like it could be an explanatory session, what does it mean to become a member of a Dynamic Coalition, how do Dynamic Coalitions work over the year, and so to make people understand what it means to join a Dynamic Coalition, either in their individual capacity or as a representative of their organization.

The other thing was that this was considered, if it's possible, then have such a Dynamic Coalition explanation session, then it should take place at the beginning of the four days IGF, rather than in the end.  But if it's the other way around, and we could get a slot definitely all Dynamic Coalitions are calling for 90 minute slot for their main session, if it's placed at day 3 or day 4, it could probably provide for an opportunity to streamline the outcomes of all the individual Dynamic Coalition sessions into the main theme of the IGF and probably also into the three thematic buckets that we have drafted, just to report back from Dynamic Coalition call, and maybe Markus or Eleonora have something to add.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Jutta.  Let me see if Markus, and then I have a quick comment.  Could we actually cover the Dynamic Coalition (overlapping speakers) newcomer session.  We have traditionally had newcomer sessions and if (overlapping speakers) if we could in fact cover Dynamic Coalitions as well as all the other components of the IGF activities at our newcomer session, I think it would be helpful to understand if that would fulfill that particular need of the Dynamic Coalitions.  And my other comment is, I think it would still be preferable to ensure that the Dynamic Coalitions were streaming into the themes, as the themes were playing out over the course of the week, and I think we need to think a little more about what a main session might look like.  I think we have heard in the past that individual report outs from Dynamic Coalitions really weren't the sort of theme that most people were looking at in a main session.

I think we need to find a way to get people really engaged, galvanized and appreciating the work of the Dynamic Coalitions, and if we can find a way to do that around particular topics or value of them I think that would be the most helpful.

Looking at the speaking queue, and but I see Ben has his hand up.  Let me see, Ben, if, just finish and see if Jutta heard that and if she had any comments, or Markus or Eleonora.  We haven't really talked about the newcomer session, but that is a key piece of the IGF.

>> It's Jutta speaking.  The newcomer session were also considered as one opportunity to put in some Dynamic Coalition information and explanation.  But we just wonder who is really attending the newcomer sessions, if it's only newcomers, and there was quite a feeling that some of the experienced people also do not know what Dynamic Coalition work means over the year.  So that is a bit, yes, it wasn't debated, there wasn't any recommendation in the end but (overlapping speakers).

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: That is a really good point, Jutta though.  Maybe it shouldn't be a newcomer session, but it ought to be check in on all the IGF activities and see what the latest developments are, or something like that.  So that it appeals to people that have been going to the IGF for some time as well.  Markus is saying he has nothing to add to your comments.

Let's keep thinking that over, if you could, we can go back and read the transcript I guess but just continue working, trying to understand what the D.C.s are looking for, from the IGF.  Of course we have the same discussion with the NRIs as well.  I don't know if there is an update from the Secretariat in terms of requests from the NRIs.

>> Hi, Lynn, this is Anja.  Very brief, so the request would be that the NRIs actually express interest to organize a main session again, we run that process since February this year, until the end of April on identifying the topic that could be the point of interest for everyone.  So far, it seems that the emerging technologies and their interfaces with inclusion security and human rights is a very broad topical framework that could orient the interest of the session.  We are in the process of narrowing down this topical framework and we will come back to the MAG with a concrete proposal in the session.  On the duration of the session, the NRIs as always will closely collaborate with the MAG and listen to that advice, but from the so far experience less than 90 minutes is not something that the NRIs would recommend.  But also I think even beyond 90 minutes, actually 90 minutes is kind of optimal duration for the session.  And now we are just discussing the format to make the session fully interactive, and as last year I think the NRIs worked very well with the MAG.  And they would be happy to collaborate again on organizing this session respecting the NRIs working modalities.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Anja.  That is very helpful update.

Let me see if there are any comments or requests for the floor.  I'm reading Eleonora's comments in the chat room.  Carlos, I agree we should still have a newcomers session in any case.  I wasn't meaning that we were to replace the newcomers session with the other one.  But we should think about whether or not there is a way to make it interesting, a second session perhaps, interesting to those individuals that have been coming for some time as well, to really understand what the current state of play is across all the activities.  Everybody has been working to address kind of improvements as identified by the community, and I think it's important that we find a way to signal that to the community.  Any final comments?  Anything from the Secretariat?

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: No, nothing from us.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you, Chengetai.  Thank you to all the MAG members who put in, I know it was a extraordinary amount of time over the last three or four weeks with respect to the workshop submissions.  This is one of the most critical responsibilities of the MAG, so appreciate clearly how important everybody took it, and the time and effort that went in.  Ben, you have the floor.

>> Hello, everyone.  Yes, I sent a question on the list yesterday, about open forums, and that it would be great to cover that during the meeting today.  Chengetai has been clear in his intervention earlier that the list of open forums that were shared, those proposals which are eligible, and it doesn't necessarily mean they will automatically be accepted, whether there is any limit to how many open forums a individual organization can be involved in, because I noted that in organizations were named in relation to two or more of the open forums that were eligible.  I think last year, it was limited to one Open Forum per organization.  I don't know if that is a standing rule, or whether it was introduced last year because of the reduced space and time we had available for the schedule in Paris.

And more generally, it would be good to understand, yes, so that was my question, I think we had a good    my other understanding is that obviously with the workshops, these are decided by the MAG, the open forums are decided by the Secretariat based on established criteria.  But at last year's meeting there was a opportunity for MAG members to provide comments on the Open Forum application, and that we identified a few concerns and the Secretariat took into account when it decided on the final list of open forums.

So it was a few questions about understanding the process for trimming down to the final list of open forums that will be taken forward to Berlin.  Thanks.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Usually speaking we do want one organization to put in an Open Forum.  We wouldn't give one organization two open forums.  There is a question if an organization is in partnership or is supporting, as long as it's not the main organizer of two open forums, but then again we do look at all the cases and try and make a fair distinction when we are accepting them.  Of course, again, there are some other organizations which are rather large.  So in effect, what I'm saying is that there is no hard and fast rule, but we do look at all the open forums and we do try and be fair and make sure that one organization is not fairly or unfairly advantaged by our selection process.

There aren't enough slots, again, this year, so we will be making a cut.  It depends on how severe a cut that we are going to be making.  We can only know that at the end, once we know the correct timings of all these sessions.  MAG can comment on the open forums.  Again we do not have the final list of proposed open forums.  But again, we do want to make, first of all, give priority to governments and then other international organizations, and make sure of course it is in line with the program and it enhances the overall program of the IGF 2019.

If somebody comes in with a topic that is not in line with what we are thinking of, of course, we will not give them priority.  I hope that makes sense.

>> Thank you, Chengetai.  Yeah, that is helpful.  Lots of extra information, that is very helpful.  You said that MAG members can provide comments.  Is there a time, a deadline in which you would like to receive any comments?  Will it be a small space in the agenda when we meet in Berlin?  Understood it's a Secretariat decision, but in terms of any views we might want to share when and how should we do that.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: First of all, yes, the Secretariat has not made the cut yet.  The first thing that we have to do is to agree on the overall schedule.  Then we will look at how many spaces are remaining, and then we can make a cut on that.  Once we have made the selection, I think that will be the best time for the MAG to comment, if they want to comment.  They can comment, you can comment now.  But then it's, I think most of the comments that you would make now we would have taken into consideration, like the comments you have made about one organization having two open forums.

So if you want to have more information on, for example, why did the Secretariat, if you see two open forums from the same organization, you can always ask why did the Secretariat make this decision, and then I can explain that, okay, for the first one, they are the lead organization, and for the second one it's also very important topic but they are not the lead organization.  They are just playing a supporting role.  And it is in line with overall theme or, you know, whatever our reasoning behind it.

So we are always ready to explain our reasoning.  We won't just say this is the decision and that is the final decision, no.  We can explain our reasoning.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Any further follow up, Ben?

>> No.  Thank you very much.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: Thank you.  Final call for any other business, any open items.  Chengetai, Rudolf?

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: No open items from this end.

>> No.

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: No, okay.  Thank you very much, everybody.  As I said earlier, thank you again to the MAG for all the extensive work over the last few weeks.  We have another month or so ahead of us of some fairly intense work, and then hopefully it settles down to a slightly more manageable schedule.  But very much appreciate all the time and attention, and particularly the support of the working group on workshop evaluation as well.  Jutta and the rest of the team has been very very helpful.

Thank you, everybody.  Hope you have a good day, good evening, and we will talk to you in, I guess two weeks.  The next call, Chengetai, is what date?  I'm trying to find it here quickly.  It must be on the 29th.  Yes.

>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: 29th.  Sorry, my computer fell asleep and I was trying to figure out the screen saver (chuckles).

>> LYNN SAINT-AMOUR: We will see everybody on the 29th.  Thank you.  Have a good day.