IGF 2017 Second Open Consultations and MAG Meeting Day 3 Morning


The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the IGF 2017 Second Open Consultations and MAG Meeting from 12 to 14 June 2017 in Geneva, Switzerland. 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. 


14 JUNE 2017 10:00

 >>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Okay.  Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.  We're going to start our second day of the MAG meeting, third day of the open consultations and MAG meeting together.  I'll give the floor over to Lynn St. Amour to start the meeting.  Thank you very much.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Good morning.  Thank everybody -- sorry, I can hear myself echoing in my ear.  Thank you, everybody, for coming back so promptly.  And we are going to keep with the speaking -- electronic speaking system.  I mean, I know there have been a few kind of hiccups with it, I think, but I think it's still overall very helpful.  It does equal the playing field in and between the on line participation.

 I think yesterday part of the complexity was when we started discussion and there seems to be an emerging consensus and we want to kind of call for that consensus, it's easy for me -- for those that are physically in the room to see whether or not there's support for that or not.  And I think one of the things we were struggling with is how do we actually gauge that for the online participants.  We kind of felt into a mode where Anja or Luis would sort of poll and then feed back.  I know that's still less than ideal, but we are open to suggestions for doing that again.  That trying to gauge the consensus, you choose to do that when you think there is an emerging consensus rather than continuing through with a long line of speakers, simply in order to move the work forward.  I also, you know, spent some time on my computer last night.  So hopefully it's back up, and I now have everything here on my own screen which will actually make my facilitation easier.

 The agenda is still as was approved yesterday at the beginning of the day.  So the agenda calls for the first hour and a half to continue with the workshop selection process.  

 The second hour and a half in this morning we would move to the main or focus sessions.  And then this afternoon, assuming we are able to get through those two items this morning, we would use for follow-up for any of the discussions that came up out of the open consultation and specifically any of the working groups of the MAG, best practice forums, DCs.  

 For those of you who might just catching up on email, I did send a note last night and ask the leaders or co-facilitators of those efforts to please indicate if they wanted to bring something forward to the MAG a little description of the topic and the time so we can both prioritize and work through the times.  So if people can pay attention to that in the background, that would be helpful.

 I'm going to turn to Thomas for a moment, and then we'll make sure everybody has the right set of documents in front of them for the work we're going to do today.


 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Yes, thank you, Lynn.  And good morning, everybody.

 First of all, I would like to thank you, Lynn, for a very good -- doing a very good job in chairing this and also for Chengetai and Eleonora and his team for extremely valuable support.

 And I also would like to thank you all for having developed a very constructive and cooperative spirit over yesterday.  Knowing that what we're doing here is not trivial because the rules are not cast in stone, it's still a young process.  It is a multistakeholder process with different worlds coming together and this always needs some time for people to get to know how other people think or work.  And I think we're in a good way to -- yeah -- get the job done as people from the U.S. would say.  And I'm happy to be part of this and see -- and contribute to the successful planning at this meeting.

 I will have to leave at noon because I have an urgent meeting with my foreign ministry in Bern that I have to attend.  But, of course, Jorge Cancio, our very able colleague, will continue to be here and take over so you won't even realize a difference apart from the fact that I'm not wearing glasses and my hair looks slightly different.  And I took off the tie this morning.  But apart from that, there will be no difference, of course.  So I'm looking forward to being part of this progress -- process and progress.  So let's begin.  Thank you very much.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Ambassador Schneider.

 I said Monday in the opening consultations that we were fortunate to have -- Thomas was here -- Switzerland.  And Thomas specifically has been very involved in all of the Internet governance discussions since the very earliest days and have been very supportive, welcoming, and facilitating of some of the new ideas here as we actually move through multistakeholder concepts, processes, and meetings.  So, again, I think we're very fortunate.

 So the document we're going to work from this morning was -- an updated version was sent out this morning adding a workshop that had been overlooked that Carolyn had suggested.  You should have an Excel document in front sent this morning about 8:00 local time.  So it's 8:00 CET.  There's two tabs in it.  One is the government tab that we went through first yesterday.  And the second one is called wildcards and imbalances, which are the workshops that the MAG identified as worthy of further review to try and address some of the imbalances that the MAG had noted yesterday morning.

 Eleonora very kindly went through and tried to color code them according to the decisions that we had taken.  The one chart that we're going to be using now is the tab that's called "wildcards and imbalances."  And we would start with line 6, Proposal Number 107 which was ranked 81 and is called Out of My Hands and I believe is a birds-of-a-feather session.

 The process we're using this morning is to go through those remaining roughly 15 or so, I think, proposals.  Again, we would determine if we want to definitely accept the proposal, accept it conditionally, and, in fact, there may well be some that we just feel are not ready or perhaps are merger candidates.  So same process as yesterday.

 Is there anyone -- if we can go back to that one.  So Out of My Hands again is a birds of a feather, ranked 81.  I'm assuming that was because of the way it's indicated in the chart was part of the wildcard, right?  So a MAG member actually suggested that we should review that as a wildcard.  So if that individual could introduce it quickly, and then I will move to the queue.  I don't remember who actually suggested we review that.


 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Arnold, I'm told that was a proposal that you had suggested.  If you could do a quick introduction, then I will go to the queue.  Thank you.

 >>ARNOLD van RHIJN:  Thank you, Lynn.  And good morning, all.  Yes, we did propose -- I did propose to put this on the wildcard list because not only this ranked very high, it has all the high score and a low variance.  

 I also indicate that no comments from MAG members were received on this proposal.  And very important is this is a continuation of a debate which we had last year in Mexico and workshop on decrypting sextortion.  

 And it was really a lively debate, full-packed room.  It was attended at that moment and I saw the strong involvement of all participants from all over the world, not only women.  And they were discussing this very sensitive issue.

 And at the end, they came up with conclusions and there was a strong wish in the room to continue this debate.  And now you have in front of you a title.  I think it's a catchy title, really oriented, focused, and an emerging issue as well.

 There was some comments from the field that Out of My Hands should be extended because what does it really mean?  So the proposer suggested now to add this title, the following sentence, so now it fully reads Out of My Hands:  Harnessing tech solutions driven and user-centered actions to counter sextortion.  So this tries to cover what the intention is of the proposal to a debate.

 Because one of the main conclusions of the IGF 2016 workshop on decrypting sextortion was that if we want to think about minimizing and controlling the impact and scale of online harassment, then we have to think about solutions.

 And the proposers think that a way forward could be a social, technical solution, so it will touch upon questions like how the technical advances may assist and what can users and victims do to be in control of their digital images.  It relates to issues like cyber-bullying and revenge porn, and other questions, they will explore the different technical tools that have been developed around the world to combat sextortion.  

 And a third one is, the panel wishes to bring together multistakeholder organizations working on tech-solution-driven and user-centered actions to counteract.

 One of the panelists is a Dutch senator, and next to her very political work, she is also a director of an organization to combat child pornography on line, so they are very -- not only she, but the others very highly qualified speakers, and I expect again a truly lively debate with hopefully solutions which other countries in the world can also benefit from.  And while looking at what we're doing here in the IGF, we try to streamline the discussions in such a way that conclusions in earlier meetings will be followed up by hopefully another meeting where, at the end, there could be tangible outputs, and that's why the reason I put this on the wildcard list.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Arnold.  In the queue, I have Jac.  

 Jac, you have the floor.

 >>JAC SM KEE:  Thanks, Lynn.  I'd like to support this proposal because it brings a very innovative approach to the -- to this issue that's increasingly being brought to the IGF space, which is around addressing online gender-based violence, and I think the innovation really is around looking at this from a technology point of view.  And I also heard from the previous two days that there was greater interest to also have conversations that has a focus around the impact of technology, as well as looking at technology quite specifically, so I think this is the sort of innovation that this session brings to the debate.  However, I would give one recommendation, which is to increase diversity of regional representation in terms of discussions.  I think that will also enrich the conversation a lot more, and I'm also happy to give recommendations around that in terms of people who are working around technology and user-centered responses towards this issue from, for example, Asia-Pacific.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Jac.  

 I have Flavio and Michael in the queue.

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER:  Just a question to the -- I don't know if Arnold is able to answer this.  The session format which is proposed is birds of a feather but if we read the proposal, in fact it looks like a debate or a panel.  We have speakers even identified as panelists.  So it does not look like, in fact, like a birds of a feather meeting, which should have a very different type of format.  Just a matter of if the proposal is accepted, this should be improved and clarified which is the right format intended.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Flavio, that will be noted.  Michael, you have the floor.

 >>MICHAEL ILISHEBO:  Good morning, everyone.  

 Having dealt with the complex issue of sextortion and justice centered back home where a major conductor almost committed suicide because of this kind of sextortion which was going on line, I think I support this session, and it still has room for improvement.  Just as the previous speaker said, we can still link up to the proposals of these so that they can be able to make it in such a way that it fits not -- I'll say it fits its description, not making it a birds of a feather and yet it be more like a debate.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Michael.  

 Sala, you have the floor, and then Ji, you're in the queue.

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  

 Having read the workshop proposal, I noted that the primary Internet governance issue was on privacy, and so given the -- given the limited number of workshop allocation spaces, I would -- I would suggest that if there were other privacy tags -- tagged workshops which could be potentially merged with this particular one, then that would -- that would be my suggestion.  

 Other than that, I have no comment on the content.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Sala.  I just -- quick interruption before we move to Ji.  

 Aida, are you saying there's something --

 >>AIDA MAHMUTOVIC:  No.  I just wanted to say that my laptop doesn't work so I just raised my hand.  Sorry.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Okay.  Thank you.  

 So Ji, you're in the queue and then Aida.

 >>JI HAOJUN:  Thank you, Chair.  Obviously food -- to have food and have sex is the major thing in our life and we should not be shy about that, but when we are preparing for the annual meeting, we should not to -- we should not highlight too much about sex.  And there are so many cybercrimes and many of these crimes are more serious than sex extortion or pornography or child abuse, things like that, but certainly this is a very important topic and we should give it a place, you know, in the annual session.

 So I'm considering if we can ask those sex-related topics to be combined, to have a joint session.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Ji.  Aida, you have the floor.

 >>AIDA MAHMUTOVIC:  Yeah.  Just briefly to say that I'm in support of having this session as a stand-alone session and I feel that it really -- we will all really benefit from it, explaining on how important both gender privacy as a human right, and human rights in general, including how serious the sexual matters on line of any kind are.  So my support and invitation for MAG members to join this session in order to understand these issues as well.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Aida.

 So I'm hearing from the comments to date support, with some suggestions for how it might be improved and some to understand whether or not it might be merged with workshops of two different topics.  

 Following our logic of yesterday, I think our choice is either to approve it and then go back and give the input back to the proposers or to approve it conditionally.  I didn't hear anybody speaking out against not having the workshop.

 So if I could go to Arnold and then to Juan.  

 Arnold, you have the floor.

 >>ARNOLD VAN RHIJN:  Thank you, Lynn.  Just to add a few words to our proposal, to my proposal.  It's also been confirmed that a speaker from Latin America has been added to the panel, so there is a geographical coverage, but we noted that there were some speakers asking to have more regions included and we will look at it.  At least I will follow up to that and ask the proposers to think about it.  

 One more remark about the word "sex."  Sex is fine.  Sex is good.  But this is something worse.  I mean, this is an issue which infringe the rights of women and children, and this should be tackled, combatted, and that's why this workshop has been proposed.  It is a serious problem.  

 I can tell you the Netherlands is a hosting service where a lot of child pornography is spreading all over the world, and our government is, indeed, very keen to combat this very serious crime, and that's why -- well, as a small part of it -- we are proposing this workshop, which as I said, is a follow-up to earlier discussions we had in the Internet Governance Forum.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Arnold.  

 Juan, you have the floor.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Thank you, Chair, and good morning to all.  Personally, I don't have anything against the content of this workshop.  I understand the importance and all that.  But my concerns here is a matter of procedure, because here we're trying to address imbalances and this is a (indiscernible) workshop and I don't know how this is going -- because the same happened with many of the other 200 that didn't pass the -- there are many with very interesting topics and very urgent also as well, but here, right now, we're trying to -- as Flavio said, taking the little slots that we have left to try to cover imbalance, and I wonder if here we are doing that, if we are doing -- solving some imbalance here.  

 So in any case, I will have this very conditionally accepted, in case that we really have a slot not needed for covering the imbalances, because that is our priority here, to cover the imbalances.  Otherwise, the -- the procedure for scoring had its course already.  Here we are just selecting -- you know, just tweaking the system minimally to try to address imbalance.  That's my concern.  Nothing about the content.  It's okay and things like that.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Juan.  And I think those are good comments.  

 Some of the balances we're trying to correct are not only geographic, they were only topical or substance as well.  This proposal did come in through the wildcard process, of which I have to say I was surprised there are only 10 wildcards that were put forward by 55 MAG members, so I think that was showing excellent restraint and I'm assuming that the ones that came through really were -- were special or addressing some need.

 Let me see if I can judge consensus to conditionally accept it, go forward.  I'm sure Arnold will take those comments back.  I see heads nodding around the room, and I will just give a second to see if there's any question or comment or strong objection from anybody participating on line.  

 I see lots of support in the Adobe Connect room as well.

 Okay.  Thank you.  First one of the day is always the most difficult.  You are sort of retesting the process

 So we're moving on now to workshop 160, which is ranked 82 which also looks as though it was a wildcard, which means there was a MAG member that suggested it for additional review.

 Flavio, you have the floor.

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER:  This is my proposal to be a wildcard.  So this workshop is, in fact, is being proposed by OECD and ITU.  Its purpose is to explore the new policy on technology approaches to provide universal and meaningful access to underserved areas, mostly rural and remote areas.

 If you look at the top 72 proposals we have, there are no workshops at all among them that also deal with access, even less access to underserved areas.

 Four of the top 72 use the tag "access and diversity."  But, in fact, they deal with other issues such as gender, two of them, security, and persons with disabilities.  So we don't have anything.  So this is a very serious imbalance I think because access should be a very important issue for the IGF.

 So this workshop will address how innovative approaches from both the public and private sectors are shaping how we are connecting the unconnected.

 And it is also important for us, the MAG, the fact that the workshop builds on the IGF's best practice forum on policy options for Connecting and Enabling the Next Billion.  There's a direct relationship to this track.  So I think there are many arguments to save this proposal.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  I would certainly have to agree it was a strong proposal, strong, strong pitch.

 In the queue, we have Carlos.  Juan, I think your hand is still up from before.

 >>CARLOS FONSECA:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  Good morning to everybody.  I don't want this to look like a Brazilian conspiracy but specifically this subject is very important for a country like Brazil.  We do have a huge problem with accessing remote areas.  We just, like, two weeks ago launched a satellite to try to deal with that.  So it's a problem for us.  

 But it's not only a problem for a country like Brazil.  It's not only a problem for even developing countries.  It's also a problem for developed countries.  I have been discussing this in fora such as the G20 or OECD with countries like Canada, and they do have a problem with remote areas.

 And I think even United States has some problems in very remote areas.  So I think this is a sort of global problem for big countries or smaller countries, developing countries and developed countries.  So I really couldn't support more this kind of topic.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Carlos.

 And while we're still working out the speaking queue, I need to apologize to Ginger because it took some time for mine to refresh and yet Carlos had put his flag up in the room.  

 If you are actually using the online system, if we can try and refrain from using the flags in the room, that will help me follow the discipline a little more clearly.

 So I have Ginger, Pablo, Shita, and then here in the room I have Aida and Ji.

 Ginger, you have the floor.

 >>GINGER PAQUE:  Can you hear me?

 Okay, thank you very much.

 Thank you very much for helping us with online participation.  I would like to point out, please, that it's not the same to have an online moderator say there is no objection, strong objection as it is to say (indiscernible).

 We have several positive points.  Particularly for Jac and Anja, I think it's important to note there was strong advocates from online participants.

 (indiscernible) -- indicates whether there was online or not (indiscernible).

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Okay, thank you, Ginger.  It was a little bit difficult to hear you, but I think the scribes did a good job of capturing the text.  What I understood Ginger's point to be was that it's not simply enough to say there's no strong objection thereby implying they're okay with the workshop going forward.  But, in fact, when there are strong positive points supporting, those should be noted as well.  

 So maybe we look to the remote -- we look to Anja to say you could say there was strong support from three MAG members or something and we have the Adobe Connect chat record as well if you need to be more specific.  I do think that's important to know.  It certainly flavors, if you will, the overall support in the room.

 Thank you, Ginger, for helping us with that.

 In the speaking queue, I have Pablo.  Pablo, you have the floor.

 >>PABLO BELLO:  Good morning, everyone.  I full support this workshop.  I needs to include a telco operator in this panel.  There's no representative from private sector because their infrastructure is provided by operators.  Thanks.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you. Thank you for being succinct, too.

 Shita, you have the floor.

 >>SHITA LAKSMI:  I support this workshop because it also relates to the issue of access in southeast Asia.  I would like to add that, if possible, to have more speakers from Asia or southeast Asia.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Shita.

 We're now going to Aida and then Ji and then we go back to the electronic queue.

 >>AIDA MAHMUTOVIC: Just quickly in support of this session because, no, it's not a Brazilian conspiracy.  In 2012 when Bosnia/Herzegovina went through a devastating flood, if things regarding this subject were a bit better, human casualties would be hugely different.  I also would suggest -- because I know there will be participants from southeastern Europe who are involved in one way or another during this horrible period to be included. They will be in this session, I'm sure, but maybe as speakers.  This would help bring the regional balance as well.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Aida.

 Let me just say how I'm managing the queue again because there are a few people in the room that aren't using the electronic speaking queue or are not able to use the electronic speaking queue.  

 When their flags go up, I note what the last speaker was in the electronic queue.  I make a note.  I slide them in and then I go back to the electronic queue because there was a moment of exasperation here a moment ago.  

 Ji, you have the floor.

 >>JI HAOJUN: Thank you, Chair.  This topic is really very important, but this topic has been discussed for many, many years.  And I don't know what broadband here means.  Do the proposals mean the cable-based technology only or it also includes mobile technologies?  If it's cable only, I don't think it to be a good idea because there are many technologies -- my experience in Africa and in China tells me that mobile phone, if you have introduced good, competitive environment for telecommunication industry, mobile technology can solve most of those problems.  And it can also -- if the telecom companies can sacrifice a bit of their profits, you can also combine broadband with TV cables.  And it can also use the existing power grid line, you know, the electricity system, to translate the broadband signals.  

 So there's lots of technologies, and there's lots of -- also lots of success stories.  And the only problem is not about the policy in technology, it's about determination and it's about profits.  So personally I'm not interested in having this topic.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Ji.

 I saw Flavio nodding his head strongly.

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER: Excuse me, Lynn.  Just reading from the proposal, the idea is to discuss different technological developments.  They are cited here fiberoptics, cable, copper flex, mobile wireless, satellite-hybrid approaches.  I think the proposals are open to discuss any type of new technologies that are able to serve the underserved areas.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Flavio.

 As we're going through all these workshops, if people could keep their comments specifically to the subject -- I mean, it's interesting to get a lot of context, but it also extends the conversations fairly significantly.  So if we can be fairly succinct.

 Juan, you are the next in the queue.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ: Yes.  I agree with Ji that this is a topic that is important.  But there have been thousands of reports, very, very good ones.  So if I want to hear this again, I will go along the suggestion of Pablo -- and I think it was Aida, no, or somebody -- that we need to change the speakers.  Because sometimes they say, oh, this speaker is from Latin America, but it's a functionary that works in Europe, maybe was born in Latin America but has not been there for 20 years and really don't know the problems in the ground.  We have that in many places here.

 If we want to discuss here, I want to have a telecom company that is in the field, in a developing country dealing with this or even in a developed country because, as Carlos said, this has happened also in developed country.  I really want people in the field, not a politician.  

 I'm a good friend of Robert Tepper, and he's a scientist in all this.  But I don't think this is the kind again to do this thing.  I would like to read the things that he writes.  He has written long and good things, even when he was in ISOC and all that.  

 But to have it here, I rather have -- of course, I will love to see his comment.  Maybe it's some sort of other thing.

 But I think that we need -- that's part of our job in MAG.  We have to see for the freshness and the interesting of this.  As I said yesterday or the day before yesterday, in order -- but even government policymakers to listen to what's going on.  So I think it's a good topic, but this is work in the selection of the panelists or whatever.  In order to have it -- because, otherwise, why repeat something that I can read.  There are many -- the commission -- there's thousands of reports regarding this.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Juan.  I'm sure that point was noted.

 Sala and then Julian.  Sala, you have the floor.

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  I make this comment -- I make this comment on the basis of the fact that I haven't submitted any workshop proposals.  None of the organizations I'm affiliated with have actually submitted any workshop proposals.  And so essentially if there was one workshop that I would personally consider to be among the top five, this would be one of them.  And I'm just -- sorry, chair.  I'm going to put this up.  Not sure if you can see it.

 Okay.  That's an island in Vanuatu, and I'm not from Vanuatu.  But it's Santo.  It's the biggest island in Vanuatu.  Luis knows it.  

 In terms of data traffic, like they have, like, 2 MBPS, 300 KBPS in certain regions.  They don't have clear accessibility.  And in terms of accessibility challenges, in the Pacific -- like we just had our Pacific Regional Internet Governance Forum.  And accessibility continues to remain a massive issue, a huge issue.  It's not just the Pacific, it's also for Asia-Pacific.  

 And I would also support what Aida mentioned.  Like, it's not unique to developing countries.  It's also something that is prevalent even in Europe.  Like, for instance, in France, like you have difficulties uploading videos on Facebook at night, you know?  And that sort of thing because of network neutrality issues.

 So having said that, in terms of ITU and OECD putting up a proposal -- yes, I'm going to narrow it down now -- I would suggest that perhaps -- I would support it but to say that perhaps one of the things we could also encourage them to do is to include the statistics division, like how we can better map penetration rates apart from just the technologies to actually meet -- and also see how we can -- and just riding off what Aida mentioned in terms of how we can also call for input from the NRIs to see, like, if the NRIs have interest in integrating into that particular workshop.  Thank you, Chair.  Sorry for taking long.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Sala.  Yes, we do need to try and be quite concise.  I have six speakers in the queue.  And if everybody takes two to three minutes, we will be another 20 minutes on this workshop alone which obviously won't allow us to get through the day.  I think we are trying to get to the point in the discussion where we have enough information in front of us to try and judge a consensus.

 We will go next to the queue, but also want to remind everybody this was ranked 82.  It was a high ranking.  And Flavio also said in his introductory comments that there were very sessions on access.  So I think there's -- he's correcting me.  No sessions at all on access.  And I think at this point, I think we're probably at the point of saying yes.  

 And I will go to the online queue in a moment, Anja.  

 We're saying yes, that Flavio would take the comments that were noted here in the room, bring it back, but that it is definitely accepted.  Is there support for that?  

 There's still seven or eight people in the queue.  I will give people a moment to take their names out of the queue if they were simply going to support going forward.  If there's a substantive point or a point of disagreement, then please leave your name in the queue and I will give you the floor.

 >> (off microphone).

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Accepted?  No, no, no, I said noted with the comments here in the room with respect to the diversity of speakers.  Conditionally accepted -- or accepted with conditions.  "Conditionally accepted" means it's not a given, that it comes in.

 >> (off microphone).

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  We probably have five that are in the accepted maybe.

 >> (off microphone).

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  No.  But yes, two.  Wait listing, a wait listing.

 >> (off microphone).

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: No, the wait listed was -- yesterday there was suggestion which said don't really think it meets the criteria.  The topic is perhaps oversubscribed, the region is perhaps oversubscribed, but it's an interesting topic so let's wait list it.  And if some other workshops drop out, which sometimes happens, or there's additional room, the secretariat would slot that in.  That's the third category.  I think we only have one in that category at the moment.

 I'm looking to Chengetai to see if there's anything he wants to correct with what I just said.

 So I still have quite a long queue.  I think the question in front of the room is whether or not we can accept this workshop to go forward conditionally, noting the comments that were made in the room with respect to diversity of speakers, so that's what I'd like a quick reading on.  

 In the queue, I have Segun, Kenta, Raquel, Ji, and Arnold.  And please keep your points succinct.  Thank you.  

 Segun, you have the floor.

 >>SEGUN OLUGBILE:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  Well, from the point of view of the developing country, I want to strongly support this workshop, because in Nigeria, we have just recently set up a national council on broadband, and one of the areas of mandate they are to look into is how they can enable you know, rural communication on an access node and how they encourage the rural community to have access to the Internet and at the same time, while increasing penetration.  And I think I want to suggest that in order to improve the diversity of the speakers, I would not mind if the Nigerian government can be invited, especially the chairman that is in charge of the council on -- I'm talking about the national broadband council, because this topic is very, very important to us in Nigeria.  And I would not subscribe to the fact that we should not continue talking about the broadband.  There are also new initiatives, emerging ideas and innovations, even if we have -- in spite of the -- what we have now in the light of innovation and all that.  It is essential that we keep on encouraging more discussions on broadband.  We need it.  And because of that, I would strongly support it.  Not conditionally.  It should be accepted.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Segun.  

 Kenta, you have the floor.

 >>KENTA MOCHIZUKI:  Thank you, Chair.  I will be brief.  

 I accept with condition and actually, I have one question to Flavio.  Is it possible for you to hold this session as an open forum because that really has not come yet and according to the, you know, content of the session, proposer and organizer, you know, are both from international organizations, so I would appreciate it if you could think about that.  Thank you.

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER:  Both OECD and ITU have already proposed other open forums, and as long as I know, they can have just one open forum, so they could not propose a second open forum on this issue.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Chengetai says yes, that's the general rule.  Let me go quickly through the queue and then close this down.  We're really taking a long time for something that I think has broad support and for which there's not another single workshop in the entire program, so --

 >> (Off microphone.)

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  It's not complete yet.  The submission period is still open.  

 Raquel, you have the floor.

 >>RAQUEL GATTO:  Thank you very much, Madam Chair.  I will be brief.  I also strongly support this workshop but my comment is very specific on including, if possible, the work done by the DC3, the dynamic coalition on community connectivity.  They are doing concrete -- they bring concrete examples of alternative models for community networks, so this should be considered.  Thank you very much.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Raquel.  

 Ji, you have the floor.

 >>JI HAOJUN:  Thank you, Chair.  Very briefly, just want to support Segun that we need more diversified range of speakers.  And first of all, from government representative from developing countries.  They know more -- I'm sure they know more about that than those NGO experts in Europe.

 And secondly, I think we need to include representatives from private sector and stakeholders.  For example, Vodafone and Huawei, they have a global operation and they are doing this job on a daily basis, and for example, Huawei -- you know, they are setting up towers, mobile phone towers, together with solar panels, so that they can -- the towers can -- you know, can be self-sustained in terms of power supply.  They have lots of experiences and, you know, I -- I really -- I'm really, you know, hesitating whether I will support this or not because these speakers in this proposal are from Europe and in here in Switzerland and in France.  Subscription for broadband is so expensive and I don't think these guys can catch the point.  Thank you.

 >>ARNOLD VAN RHIJN:  Thank you, Lynn.  Just to support this proposal, taking into account the remarks made on the speakers list and the geographical coverage, we'd like to see a panelist from the private sector in the panel.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Arnold.  I have Jac and Julian in the floor and then I'm going to call consensus.  

 Jac, you have the floor.

 >>JAC SM KEE:  Thank you, Lynn.  I also want to express my support, specifically also in the comments around weighted diversity and participation, and I would also like to take this opportunity to talk a little bit about the process.  If we can, as MAG, just to refrain from commenting too much around the content for each of the workshops, because otherwise, it will really take us too long.  So to rather be quite specific about how it responds to current gaps and be quite specific about what recommendations that we're going to make.  That's one.  

 And the other is also to really refrain from putting down other regions and stakeholder groups in our comments as we're trying to raise our points.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Jac.  Julian?

 >>JULIAN CASASBUENAS:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  I would like also to support this proposal and -- taking into account previous comments of diversity in the panel, but I think it's very important because it has been more than 20 years that rural areas are still unconnected and it's really important to link these initiatives, especially also community networks, into broadband access that is already available in some parts of the urban areas and to connect with these communities.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Julian.

 So I -- the consensus that I'm seeing or hearing, reading, is for conditional acceptance with quite a number of strong recommendations with respect to the diversity of speakers.  That would mean it would go in the conditionally accepted list and that those items must be addressed.  And I'm looking around the room and I'm looking to Anja to give any feedback from the online participants.

 >>ANJA GENGO:  Just to say that Alejandra gives her clear support to the 160 and especially to Flavio's remarks.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Okay.  Thank you.  And I also want to note Jac's comments, too.

 In the last hour, we have done two proposals.  We will be here for the rest of the day on the remaining -- whatever it is.  I can't see the bottom of the screen.  12 or so.  We want to make sure we deliberate responsibly and just enough.  Not a lot more than enough.  Just enough so we can actually judge the consensus.  So I mean, if I could ask people to keep their comments short with respect to you support or you don't and with what you would want changed.  We don't need a lot of the context for background or examples.  I think we all have a lot of examples and are steeped enough in most of these topics that we can recall our own examples right quickly.  

 I also want to take this opportunity to say that at 11:30, I'd like to swap -- stop this part of the session for a moment, move to the main or focus sessions, because we only have Thomas with us for a bit longer this morning, and I think it's appropriate that we hear from the host country on their plans for the opening ceremony, thematic sessions, high-level events, et cetera, before they go.

 So I would like support from the room to do that.  Hopefully we can get through a few more of these between now and 11:30.

 So if there's support for that, then we would move to the next workshop proposal, which is -- is that the one up there? -- 129 from the Asia-Pacific region.  It was ranked 89.  Also a very high ranking.  Called "Making Artificial Intelligence Work for Equity and Social Justice."  Now, this is one of the ones that the secretariat and I pulled forward yesterday to address the regional imbalances, and again, we just went through and found the next five highest ranked regional proposals.  

 So are there any comments on the proposal?  

 It's -- some of the comments were "very relevant and challenging topic, speakers represent civil society and technical community but lack presence."  I'm assuming from business community and governments.  

 I think that was the topic.  Is there anyone who wants to comment or speak -- 

 Juan, you have the floor.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Yes.  Just to follow Jac's recommendation, plus I -- I'm for it, covering those two comments, you know.  If we supplement with somebody from business and somebody from government, with geographical.  The topic is interesting, it's a new one, and in the title is "Social Justice."  Everything that has social justice has my vote.  So I'm for it.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Juan.  Any other comments?  

 Yes, I understood conditionally.  

 Jac, your mic is lit.  Did you want the floor?

 >>JAC SM KEE:  I think it's a critical topic.  I also like that the proposers come from both Latin America and Asia-Pacific.  I do agree that it does require much more diversity in stakeholder discussions.  If we can include the private sector as well as government, that will be fantastic.  So conditional acceptance.

 >>JI HAOJUN:  Thank you, Chair.  Also conditionally support this important proposal.  I think they need to add speakers from labor union because on the new technological conditions, more and more people will lose jobs, they will be rendered useless in the new century, so people to be employed or would it be unemployed is very important.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Ji.  

 In the queue, I have Pablo and Renata.  

 Pablo, you have the floor.

 >>PABLO BELLO:  I propose to merge this workshop with the Number 12 that we approved yesterday.  There is -- sorry.  Sorry.  I propose to merge this workshop with Number 12 that we review yesterday because they -- it's very similar, actually.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Can you just call out the title of 12?  

 That was probably a government proposal, I'm guessing.

 >>PABLO BELLO:  That is "Social Responsibility" --

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Oh, it's right on the top.

 >>PABLO BELLO:  -- "Ethics in Artificial Intelligence."  I think this would be an option to make.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  So for those that maybe weren't able to follow the conversation, Pablo is suggesting we merge "Making Artificial Intelligence Work for Equity and Social Justice" with work 12, which was "Social Responsibility and Ethics in Artificial Intelligence:  An East-West Dialogue."  

 So in the queue, I have Renata and then Ji.  

 Renata, you have the floor.

 >>RENATA AQUINO RIBEIRO:  Thank you, Chair.  My support for 129.

 I do not support a merger.  I think 12 is a slightly different topic and equally rich.  I evaluated workshop 129 and I just would -- I just recommended -- I just gave it a lower score on roundtable.  I would again refer to the great amount we have and also the workshop from -- that was already approved by consensus, "Out of my Hands."  That was a birds of a feather but put in the context as a roundtable.  

 If these workshops go for mentoring or for conditional acceptance, I would note that they adopt the birds of a feather format.  And even in this one, if it goes to conditional acceptance, to also try and change the format to a more interactive one.  Thank you.

 >>JI HAOJUN:  Thank you, Chair.  I have no intention to disagree with merging of these two proposals but I don't know if the speakers from India and China, they know each other or they can get along with each other, but maybe secretariat can bridge the gap and ask them to talk to each other.  If they agree, I will not disagree.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Ji.  I think that's a good way forward, and Pablo, who had suggested the merger, is nodding his head in accordance as well.

 Let me go to -- I have Sala and Jac in the queue and then see if we can find a consensus.  

 Sala, you have the floor.

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  First comment is I'd support a merger for the sake of efficiency and I like efficiency, given that we don't have a lot of workshop slots.

 Secondly, in response to our MAG colleague, whom I won't name, I would say that to some extent there has to be some level of discussion on both process and content.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Sala.  

 Jac, you have the floor.

 >>JAC SM KEE:  Just a comment on the merger.  Just to note that workshop 12 is already quite bloated in terms of speakers, so that might play into the consideration, apart from all of the stuff that was also raised.  And also support, I think, in the comment by Ji that trade unions would actually be quite a useful integration into this session.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Jac.  

 And Arnold, you have the floor.

 >>ARNOLD VAN RHIJN:  Thank you, Lynn.  Just to give my support to this proposal, taking into account the comments made.  Perhaps if we go down the list, if it is possible for you to -- to introduce the -- for each workshop the comments made by MAG members, as I had difficulties getting access to the mainly list so I cannot see the comments.  If that's possible, appreciate it.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Arnold.  We can certainly read them out as we were yesterday when we introduce each one of the workshops.

 My proposal would be for now that we leave these two as separate workshops, based on the comment.  

 The first, it's addressing an important topical area, which is new and emerging artificial intelligence, social justice and equity.

 It's also addressing the regional imbalance.  Both the workshops are, I think, quite full, and if we take into account some of the suggestions here -- in particular, Ji's, for instance -- they will gain more panelists, and I do think merging workshops is very difficult and do not necessarily lead to a better result.

 So my proposal would be that we conditionally accept this workshop on the basis of the various comments that have been noted by the members in the room, and I'd like to see if I can get a consensus call here in the room and on line.  So Anja, heads-up.

 Do people support that approach here in the room?  Pablo, you don't support the approach?

 [ Laughter ]

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  You don't support the approach?

 >>PABLO BELLO:  No.  I still believe that the merger is the solution.  

 But Lynn, I don't know how many workshops we will accept right now.  I'm a little lost about it, so my proposal is because I think that we are growing and growing the number of workshops and we have to deal with that.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  We will go through one or two more now, then we'll go to the main focus sessions, and when we come back, we can give you a count on where we are against the categories.  But conditionally accepted doesn't mean that everything is fixed and all roll in, right?  So I mean, it's not a hundred percent acceptance that would automatically roll in.  We would hope so, but -- and again, the eight was a number that won't be finally known -- it won't be lower than eight, but it won't be finally known until the secretariat has had time to go through the length of the sessions that have actually been supported.  I actually believe there have been quite a number of shorter-length supported than perhaps in past years, which would free up some additional slots, and that's the kind of deep massaging that the secretariat does on the MAG's behalf.

 Anja, are there any comments from on line?

 >>ANJA GENGO:  So only from Avri, saying, "In general I do not believe mergers work will not oppose."

 Ginger and Alejandra said that they don't have comments for this one.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you.  So we will stay with the proposal that I put forward that at this point we not consider a merger, it's conditionally accepted with the terms, here in the room, and we will move on and try and do one or two more.

 The next one would be ID 200, "Two Networks will Shape your Digital Future," ranked 97.  The comments -- it's a roundtable.  Is that the other one?

 It's a roundtable.  And the comments are:  One of the dimension of Internet of Things could be merged with others in a more general approach or could be a new format session.  Another one was well-organized and interesting and it would be better if you could include one or more speakers from the technical community.

 Now, this one -- this comes through a wildcard suggested by a MAG member.  Was it Segun?  Segun, do you want to speak?  I think you were the person -- Wisdom?  Wisdom, you have the floor.

 >>WISDOM DONKOR:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  And good morning.  I have in my hand here a flyer.  It was on (indiscernible) at smart village.  If you read, it says, "Empowering local entrepreneurs to transform lives in remote upgrade communities truly in renewable energy and technology."  And then as you go inside, you see how engineers -- that engineers were able to actually install solar systems in a village to (indiscernible) the whole village.  You could see how the village were happy.

 And then I have in my hand here another one, a light in the dark and how a band of volunteers brought electricity and Internet to a community.  Now, why am I saying this?  I'm saying this because this particular workshop seek to address both the issues about electricity and then the issues about Internet.

 Now, in a developing world, we have been talking about broadband, broadband, broadband.  Why is it that we are not achieving the access that we are all talking about?  One of the reasons is because of lack of electricity.  There is no power to power the broadband that we are talking about.

 So for us to be able to solve this problem, we need to address the issues of electricity, look for ways that we can -- I mean, ways that can address electricity issues.  And on top of that, these access issues will be solved.

 And when I -- so to talk to that, I think this particular workshop will address the issue of electricity, Internet, and then the broadband.  

 And then in the worst case, I would prefer the workshop once we see be merged with 200 so that they can actually deal with the Internet issue, the electricity issue, and then the broadband issue as well.  So that's what I -- thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Wisdom.  

 We were just pulling up some more details in the background.  It actually pulls it from civil society and the technical community.  

 I have three people in the queue, so we'll turn to them and then see if we can judge where we are.  

 I have Sala, Juan, Mamadou Lo and Ji.

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO:  Thank you, Chair.  I would like to support the workshop 200 and suggest that in terms of improvement that we rope in IEEE.  

 The brochures that Wisdom is referring to is actually a WSIS booth by IEEE, and they have done extensive work in terms of policy in this space.  And we're always talking about, particularly in terms of IGF improvements, in how we can better rope these things in together.

 And having said that, rope in IEEE and get better geographical diversity, noting that the workshop proponent is from the U.S. and it's heavily -- there's one Nigerian.  There's one Nigerian, Ms. Fullmee (phonetic).  We would like to see some from Asia, Caribbean and Latin America as well.  That's all, Chair.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you.  Good comments, Sala.

 Juan, you have the floor.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Chair, this is another example of the thing that I think that we as a MAG have to interact.  When we say some workshop need improvement, it's not only -- well, sometimes it could be only the speakers.  But in this case, I think we have to suggest them as the focus because the explanation that Segun said is good.  I'm sold.  

 But that's not what is here.  Here I think it's some part of talking about refrigerators and all that.  I would rather have this for the Dire Straits song of the '80s.  You know, I like the classics.  I don't want to hear about talking refrigerators.  Maybe what he said about the power is -- so I would put this conditionally and not about -- and the conditions are not the speakers this time.  But conditionally that the main focus is what Segun said, the difficulties for having Internet, for having -- we need electricity and we don't have that yet because all the smart cities of light bulbs and this and that, that has been covered elsewhere.  Here the main focus should be what Segun said.

 So with that conditionally and putting that very clearly to the proposers, I will give my approval to this.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Juan.  And good points.

 Just to clarify for the transcript, it was actually Wisdom who was speaking.  I did call Segun and Segun passed to Wisdom so it was Wisdom.

 I think your point was very good, though.  And the ones with a conditional acceptance, I think going forward and perhaps looking backwards, we can identify for those the MAG contact that should go back.  In some, it's clear.  

 So, Wisdom, if we could tag you as the MAG contact to go back assuming the consensus here is that it's conditionally accepted to go back and work with the proposers, then I think that would help address your point which was very good, Juan.

 So I have Mamadou Lo, Ji, and Jac in the floor.  

 Mamadou Lo, you have the floor.

 >> MAMADOU LO:  Thank you, Chair.  I would just like to say I would like to support the proposal.  For me, it's part of now -- a very big part of Internet governance in Africa.  Right now, underserved regions have lack of electricity.  And without electricity, we cannot go for Internet in those regions.  Thank you very much.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Ji, you have the floor.

 >>JI HAOJUN:  Thank you.  I would like to conditionally support this proposal.  My suggestion that could this proposal merge with another proposal, which is original Proposal Number 42.  The topic is Internet of Things for smart city.  Because I think these two proposals are quite identical, and there's a good basis for them to work together.  

 And Number 42 is from Asia-Pacific and also includes speakers from different regions, from Africa and from Eastern Europe.  So I don't know if they can work together to give them -- we can give them more time to have 90-minute session and to each side to cut a few speakers to have more concise presentation, maybe they can converge.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Ji.  

 I mean, it's an interesting suggestion.  Although I think the way Wisdom described it, I see them as pretty fundamentally different topics.  But let's see what the rest of the MAG comments are.  

 And, maybe, Wisdom, we can come back to you for your reaction on a potential merger.

 In the queue I have Jac.

 >>JAC sm KEE: Thank you, Chair.  I think I agree with Juan on this.  I will not support the acceptance of this with condition or not.  I think that the topical -- the topical gap that Wisdom speaks to is really around looking at electricity and access to the Internet, which this session actually does not address.  It's looking at something entirely different.  I also wouldn't accept the merger because it is also talking about something entirely different, which is around smart cities.  

 And I think this is the case where the proposer comes from makes a difference in terms of the direction of the content.  I would very, very much without a doubt support a workshop like this if it was actually proposed by, say, someone either maybe from India or somewhere in the African region because it would raise the kinds of things that Wisdom did.  But I think in this instance it does not.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: So just a point of clarity, I think Juan actually supported it with the strong condition that it be adapted along the lines as Wisdom introduced it.  And I think one of the key criteria could be that it needs developing country support or different leadership or different proposers.

 >>JAC sm KEE: So I'm supporting Juan's rationale, but I'm having a different point of view.  I think who the proposer is will actually direct it, unless there's a co-proposer coming from a different country at which point we might actually be also directing too much in terms of the conversation the proposer would like to have just so that it can fit in.  I'm not sure that would work actually.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  I think that's a good point as well, Jac.

 Ji, were you in the queue?

 >>JI HAOJUN:  Very briefly.  I agree with Jac.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: So we have -- there was a proposal from Juan and I think a lot of support for the proposal as Wisdom sort of introduced it.  I also take Jac's point which is, you know, are we trying to redirect or reshape a proposal more than what is appropriate.

 And I'll come to you in a moment, Mike.

 I do think we could go back to the proposers, give them the feedback, give them an opportunity to reshape it and come back with the secretariat again in the role to determine whether or not it meets the MAG's direction, which would be a significantly conditional proposal.

 Let me go to Michael and then see if I can find a consensus.

 Michael, you have the floor.

 >>MICHAEL ILISHEBO: I consent.  I want to look at issues of mergers.  At some point, you find workshop that may have similar content which is a wildcard may have similar content with a workshop which is in the top 72.  Are we only merging the wildcards only, or there's a possibility that there can be a merger from a wildcard to something -- to one of the sessions which is in the top 72 with similar content?

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  I think in theory it's possible.  But if it's ranked quite highly, one would have to assume it was a pretty strong, well thought-out panel with appropriate speakers and topics.  And asking it to potentially merge with another could, you know, affect it negatively, let's just say.  So in theory, yes.  I think in practice, probably doesn't happen very often at all.

 If it is something you think specifically we could look at for this one, then let us know.  If it was a general question, then fine.

 Sala, you have the floor.

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO:  Thank you, Chair.  I'd just like to offer brief comments in relation to it shouldn't matter if the proponent was U.S. civil society.  If we were to recommend that it's conditional where you encourage geographical diversity, at the end of the day we want to maintain a level of neutrality as MAG members, treat everybody equally sort of thing, not to impose our views to think that just because an agency or something is going to redirect certain issues.  The whole idea of bringing the diversity of people around the table is to robustly dialogue.

 Having said that, I would just like to mention we need to again increase geographical diversity.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Sala.

 And, Renata, you had the floor and then I'm going to try and find consensus.

 >>RENATA AQUINO RIBEIRO:  Support the proposal without observations.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you very much.  And thank you for your succinctness.

 Are there any comments on line, Anja?

 So at this point, I mean, I think there was a fairly significant support for the proposal.  I note that there was significant interest from the African region and with the representatives here, again, which is an imbalance in our geographic.  

 Maybe we could find a sort of halfway house here and ask Wisdom to, maybe with the secretariat, work with the proposers to see if they were amenable to reshaping the workshop along these lines, which means they would have to address the diversity of the panel, possibly the format and that sort of thing.  And if so, note that we would sort of provisionally pull them into the agenda.  

 But as it stands now, if the workshop does not change and as submitted, it is not accepted.  I think that was the -- is that a consensus and a path forward the room could support?

 And the online room, can the online room support that as well?

 Yes, Juan.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  I don't want to challenge this decision, but I want to make a comment because I think this could be something of the work that I believe that the MAG should do.

 If you see some of the speakers in this -- because this has happened before.  Have you been -- what I'm going to say now, does it sound alien to you?  Have you been to some workshops that it looks like a sales pitch from a company?  Have you happened that?  

 And if you look at some of the speakers and the companies and the services they provide, I don't -- I really think that, of course, they know.  But I rather listen to this, as Wisdom said, from the needs part and not from company -- check out the companies of the speakers.  

 I think this is the kind of detail work that we as MAG have to do in order to ensure that workshops don't become sales pitch from companies.  Well, I think that's enough.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Juan.  I think it's a good point.  I think the need aspect is critically important, and I think the better we all understand that, the better, of course, the progress we can make.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  (off microphone).

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Anja, was there a comment from the on line on the Chair's proposal?

 >>ANJA GENGO:  Yes, there is a comment from Avri and Ginger.  I'm reading the comment from Avri:  Yes, do not support asking a workshop to change to be accepted.  

 And then from Ginger:  With the provision that we take note that if we completely change organizers and content, we have rejected the proposal and have actually created a new workshop proposal.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Sorry?  Sorry, Juan?

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Natural selection.  Darwin.

 [ Laughter ]

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Thank you.  I think this is a very -- a very relevant discussion because it's one thing to choose or select the workshops and then based on what they write on text on a paper or on line and then what they actually become.  

 And since I have been in the core team of EuroDIG since its beginning, we have developed a fairly sophisticated set of session principles that go about diversity but also about things like interactivities.  So there shouldn't be a panel of 20 people and no space for the rest of the participants to engage.

 So no panel is all -- or small panels allow maximum time for the participants because that's also a lot of the problems or the biases that you may have on the panel or in selecting a panel.  

 And at EuroDIG, we had so-called subject matter experts that is a system that has developed over the years that is actually supporting the organizers of workshops, of plenaries, and pushing them also as necessary -- there's a thin line -- so that they live up to the expectations in the sense of inclusivity, respecting diversity, respecting all relevant opinions, and also being interactive and giving some space to the whole public, not just to the ones that happen to sit on the panel.

 It works more or less well every time because, of course, in the end still, it depends on individuals.  It depends on the moderators you choose, et cetera, et cetera.

 But some form of support with the necessary authority also to guide or push in a certain direction of what we actually -- of what types of discussions we would want to have at the IGF is something that maybe we should also elaborate a little bit more clearly on because that's -- as I said, what you have -- you can write in a proposal whatever you want.  What you actually do in six or nine months' time is not necessarily the same.  

 And there's room for margin for getting closer to what we want to have or the community or the participants want to have further away.  So I think this is something that we should keep in mind and maybe spend some time on, discussing our methods and ways as the MAG to accompany and support organizers that we -- that pass.  Thank you very much.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  I can say, Thomas, that you're a good wedding planner.

 [ Laughter ]

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Thomas.  I think those were very -- very interesting, very useful comments.  And my comments earlier I understand weren't on the mic.

 What I was asking for was the MAG's support to move forward in what I kind of said was an unusual way for us, and I think Thomas outlined where I think it can be more helpful.

 I'm saying that because of the various imbalances it addresses, which is both topic and regional.  I like the need perspective of it.  So with the MAG's support, I would like to ask Wisdom to work with the secretariat to go back to the organizers and see if we can reshape it along the lines of Wisdom's introduction.  

 If that does not happen, just so we're clear, this workshop is not accepted, is my reading of the MAG's decision.

 Then we will proceed along those lines.  

 If we can take a pause now from this exercise, and as I said, when we come back to it, we will have a count of where we are against the various categories from the secretariat.

 What I'd like to do in the next hour and a half between now and the lunch break is move to the portion of the agenda that's the main focus session.  

 As I said, Thomas is with us for, I don't know, another half hour, maybe, and obviously as the host country, they have a considerable responsibility towards plenaries and opening ceremonies and things and I think it's important that we hear from them and -- their desires.  

 The Swiss government has actually been very active in trying to help us find ways to kind of reinvigorate and energize, in response to some of the comments that we've heard through various suggestions for improvements to the IGF, so I'd like to give him and Jorge time to walk us through that.

 Eleonora has put up the main sessions grid, just so we all have the same framework in front of us with respect to what we are talking about.

 The opening ceremony there on the Day 1, which is a Monday this year, has always been the prerogative of the host country.  That's when there's a formal opening ceremony and introduction when we've had all the speakers.  And so I will turn it over to Thomas there.  I think that's an appropriate level of introduction in terms of roles and responsibilities towards the host country.

 >>CHENGETAI MASANGO:  Host country and the U.N.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Sorry.  Host country and the U.N.  Thank you.

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Thank you, Lynn.  And just to make very clear that of course we do work hand-in-hand and brain-in-brain, or whatever needs to be there for cooperation, with the U.N. and with everybody.

 Well, maybe why are we proposing what we're proposing?  Let's start at the very beginning.  I'm one of those who has participated in all the 11 IGFs so far and we've witnessed with not too much of enthusiasm that I get feedback from gut and keep getting feedback from many sides that what usually happens in the opening ceremonies and then since the introduction of the so-called day zero in the high-level part of the day zero was a more or less one-dimensional or one-directional sequence of pre-written speeches of high-level representatives that most of the time were not really interacting with each other and that there was, at least with us, but with others -- with a lot of others that we heard from, not fully satisfactory in the sense that we thought that it would be.  

 On the one hand, of course, it is good and necessary and relevant to have high-level representatives from governments but also from the other stakeholders with us, because they should actually not just read and speak, but in particular also listen to others, and we do not think that to continue with a set of monologue speeches is the ideal thing.

 So we are trying to come up with a slightly different approach in the hope that we'll get the tradeoff between having enough spaces that is -- are considered attractive for high-level representatives, while allowing and supporting or pushing them, whatever you call it, to be a little bit more interactive and also not just talk and then leave but also to listen to each other and maybe not only to other high-level persons but experts from all levels of all stakeholders would be something that we should at least try at the beginning of the second -- or more or less the beginning of the second of the two 10-year terms.  That that's the idea.  It's very easily said; it's not that easily done.  Because I think most of us, the previous hosts and the U.N., have probably tried to do this every time.  So there is no miracle that we will be able to do, but our intent is really to try it a little different and we see how it goes.  And again, we would need all the support of everybody to convince these -- and explain this to high-level people that it is not -- the idea is not necessarily to just go there for a three- or five- or whatever minutes speech, have a few bilaterals, and then leave, but to actually really listen to others, and that is to the benefit of everybody.  

 And so what we are proposing, and this has been introduced -- I think, to you by Jorge on the mailing list already to some extent -- is that we would have a very short opening ceremony with representatives from the U.N., as well as from the host country and the Geneva city and/or Canton, and then we would have an interactive roundtable dialogue following this on the first day.  

 That will be not that many spaces for high-level representatives as if you just list 20 or 30 or whatever, five- or four- or six-minute speeches, so in addition to that, we could use one of the sessions, for instance, on Tuesday morning, as a thematic -- one of the thematic sessions.  We could use it as a special offer to high-level persons.  That would allow them also to have -- if they need a space for them, to give them a formal space, but -- and we should also remind everybody, including also the organizers, that they could use all the other main sessions, actually, as prominent slots for high-level experts.  

 So that is, of course, something that at least in our perception of the intention of the Internet Governance Forum as a dialogue is something that we should try and use basically all main sessions as prominent slots for high-level persons to participate.

 I'll stop here and give the floor -- would like to give the floor to Jorge for some more details because he was the one that has been taking detailed -- a more detailed look at this.  And so Jorge, please complement if you wish.  Thank you.

 >>JORGE CANCIO:  Hello and good morning to everyone.  Thank you for giving me the floor, Thomas.

 In any case, I think that the main elements of how we intend to organize these so-called high-level thematic sessions has been explained by Thomas.  If you have any feedback, comments, suggestions, we are of course very happy to take them into account.

 We are still in preparation mode, both within our hierarchy and with the U.N., with Chengetai and his team, on this, because we will have other like protocol issues which we will have to deal later on, once we have at least a common proposal of how we would like to organize these thematic sessions.

 As to the one on Monday afternoon, Monday evening, as said, we would like to have the opening ceremony as short as possible.  

 In Guadalajara, Jalisco, if I'm remembering correctly, we had an opening ceremony of around 50 minutes.  We would like to cut it a little bit down.  Perhaps it helps that we won't have so nice -- such nice mariachis.

 We are looking for Swiss mariachis, but that is perhaps a bit difficult --

 [ Laughter ]

 >>JORGE CANCIO: -- but we are exploring possibilities.  Yodeling.

 [ Laughter ]

 >>JORGE CANCIO:  But something that is also acceptable to the ears of other stakeholders worldwide.

 So that's for the opening ceremony.

 As to the thematic session after that, instead of having like 25-minute speeches, we are really of the opinion that it would be much better to have some interactive format with VIPs, high-level people from the different stakeholder groups, engaging in a discussion.  And now that we are still at the beginning of the new 10-year mandate of the IGF and there are so many things going on in the digital environment in the framework of cooperation, we think that that would be a good topic to deal with.

 We are playing with the idea of having, after the opening ceremony, still our president here to engage in that discussion with such high-level representatives.  

 But as Thomas said, if we want to make it interactive, you cannot have more than 10 people on the podium.

 So that's why, as a shared idea with the IGF secretariat, with Lynn, appeared the possibility of taking the space of Tuesday morning and transforming it into a high-level thematic session where we could give space to those high-level stakeholders that cannot make it because of time reasons on Monday afternoon, and have there also a broad discussion on the topic of general interest, of political interest.  

 And one of the ideas we are playing with is to retire the main session proposal we made on democracy, public trust, and how digitization is affecting that, and to use that idea, that topic, as a basis for developing this high-level thematic session on Tuesday morning.

 So that's, I think, the level of development we have, but I'm happy to answer any -- any questions, and I'll do my best.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  So I hope the proposal is clear.  If not, that should be our first order of business, to make sure we understand it, and then we can comment.  So let's use the electronic speaking queue, again, which is empty, but there are flags up in the room.


 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Is it not empty?

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: It is full.  Very full.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Okay.  It's absolutely not empty.  Mine is obviously refreshing very slowly because it says it's empty.  So in the queue, I have Sala, Renata, Juan, Liesyl, and Ji.  Sala, you have the floor.


 First of all, I'd like to thank your co-chair, Thomas, and also to Jorge for the excellent presentation.  I'm very excited at the intent, particularly in terms of removing the monologue and encouraging the dialogue, which is what the IGF is actually about.  Particularly in terms of getting, you know, the opening and the high-level leaders to do that.

 And in terms of the next -- I don't know, how many years do we have left?  Eight?

 >> (Off microphone.)


 >> (Off microphone.)

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO:  Right.  So especially with the nine years that's left, and the fact that we're having it in Switzerland, which is renowned for your neutrality, I think it's just brilliant, so congratulations and fully support the innovation and the idea.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Sala.  

 And Thomas, jump in anytime you want and I'll just manage the queue for you.  

 Renata, you have the floor.

 >>RENATA AQUINO RIBEIRO:  Thank you, Chair, and thank you for our host country presentation, indeed.  

 It looks quite different, our main session grid this year, and I would support the view that the sessions have to be more interactive.  However, I think that we really need to ascertain that the workshops that are going to feed into the main sessions and the interaction with the intersessional activities is there, because the way I see it, we have lots of workshops, many with quite -- with topics that can be similar, and we don't really have -- I'm concerned about the process for deciding on them.

 Some proposals are still being worked on, and last year we had a lot of micromanaging of the main sessions, and that also did not lead to the expected result.

 I will also note that I am currently involved in two main sessions proposals as co-organizer.  I am proposing with Zeina Bou Harb a main session on human and social dimensions on the Internet and, with Kenta, the proposal on digitization, but I -- my work with Zeina, I can continue not being a lead on this proposal if it -- it is a problem being a MAG member in two proposals.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Renata.  

 I would like to keep our comments specific to the proposal from the Swiss government on the thematic -- use of one of the main sessions as a thematic session and we'll hit the other main session discussions at a later point.  Juan, you have the floor.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Thank you, Chair.

 Regarding the main session, I have a comment and a suggestion and I have a question also.  

 The comment is that I have no comment.  Maybe that's first.

 [ Laughter ]

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  I agree with -- I think it's very well presented so that's no comment, so I will go to the suggestion.  The suggestion is that you have chosen in the title a word that is very difficult to translate to Spanish, "polity" or "polity."

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  "Polity."

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  "Polity."  It's very difficult to translate in Spanish.  I think there's a list of the English word different to translate.  Like I think serendipity is one of those difficult words, and -- you know, to move to other languages, and I think this is in the list.  So I suggest --

 >> (Off microphone.)

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  No, no, Thomas.  The point is that this is a word that has a huge meaning behind, so I suggest to put the meaning instead of the word, in order to -- when it's translated to other languages it will be more understood.  I -- I think it's a suggestion.  Take it as that.  

 And my question --

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Chengetai has just said, to interrupt -- apologies -- but that is a working title, so we will definitely take any suggestions. 

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Okay.  It's just a suggestion.  

 And then my question is:  Chair, are we going to see the day zero proposals?  I always have great concerns about day zero events.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  So yes.  The --

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  When -- we're going to do it?

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: -- the secretariat will share the day zero, and we're also in agreement that the secretariat will share the open forum when it comes in, as well.  Again, that's not the responsibility of the MAG.  That has been through the secretariat and the U.N.  But it's clear that if there was a strong objection from anyone in the MAG, that it would taken tag up with the secretariate and the U.N., but just so we're not confusing responsibilities, we will see them when they're complete.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  So it will be done on line.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  It will probably be -- it will done on line --

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Not here.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: -- or we can do it on one of the virtual calls.  No, those calls are not closed yet.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Because last year we had a chance to review day zero, remember, in New York in June.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Yeah.  They're not done yet.  The submission's not done yet.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ: Not here now.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Liesyl, you have the floor.

 >>LIESYL FRANZ: Thank you, Chair.  Good morning, everybody.  Thank you very much to our host government for putting -- well, first of all, for hosting the IGF this year and for putting so much thought and energy into the role and trying to put forth very innovative approaches.  And like many others who spoke before me, I'm all for trying to find innovative ways to have dialogue rather than speechifying in the opening ceremony.

 In looking at this proposal -- and it is nice to have it on a grid like this because I do good -- I do well with pictures.

 [ Laughter ]

 And what the picture shows me, though, is that the high-level thematic session on day two takes away a main session from the slot -- first of all, those that we do subsequently have to pick from and we have very good proposals for our main session.  

 I appreciate, Jorge, your description of the proposal and the thought of changing the main session proposal to a high-level thematic discussion sort of on the same topic.

 I would just point out that one thing that this proposal doesn't benefit -- that what would -- the main sessions benefit from, that this proposal doesn't, is that the requirement in the main session guidelines for consultation and engagement with the stakeholders in crafting the main sessions between now and the IGF.

 So I'm -- I'm noodling this one.  I'm not sure -- we lose a main session slot.  And it changes the nature of what that session would be, if it's a high-level thematic session.

 I have no issue with the topic that was put forward.  I have no issue with trying to make things innovative and incorporating the high-level folks that we want to incorporate and integrate into the program.  I'm just not sure if this helps that.  And I'm worried about the main session not benefiting from the main session guideline approach.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Liesyl.

 Ji, you have the floor.

 >>JI HAOJUN: Thank you, Madam Chair.

 Through you, I would like to ask our Swiss colleagues to clarify some points.  First is the meaning of "digital polity," does it mean global Internet governance?  

 And the second thing is, as I understand, the main sessions and the high-level thematic discussion session, they are all thematic in nature, right?  And the statements or interventions should be short and concise.

 In that case, because it's interactive, do we still have to register in advance for the chances to speak?  Because our high-level officials would like to know in advance what they should do.  It doesn't work if they come to the meeting and then wait in the queue to put up the flag and don't know whether they would have the chance to speak or not.  

 And who would be the one, the secretariat or the host country, who would be the one to manage the speaker list?  These are the things we would like to clarify.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Let me turn to Chengetai or Thomas and see if either one of them has a comment at this point in time.

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Thank you.  Well, there wouldn't be a thing called speakers list probably.  It would be a list of participants in an interactive dialogue.  At least that's how we would try and frame it which, of course, would include that whoever is part of the dialogue will have the right to speak or the opportunity to speak.  But it shouldn't be -- as we said, we shouldn't just call it a roundtable and then give the floor one after the other to have his monologue speech.  That's not -- at least that's definitely not our idea.

 And I think with regard to other things that have been brought up, yes, it is -- it is not easy.  It is definitely not easy.  Everything also has a price to some extent.  So there will be a trade-off.

 With regard to Liesyl's remark about losing a main session -- and, Jorge, please complement -- our idea, I think, would be to get as close as possible with this thematic session to how a main session is organized.  

 For me, that would personally include these high-level representatives would also be interacting with the audience, that the audience would have opportunities to make comments, ask questions, like in any other main session.  So it wouldn't -- at least it shouldn't be a closed VIP session.

 And this is a question of communicating this to VIPs.  Some may say, well, I have to have my prepared three-minute intervention.  Anything else I won't do.  Okay.  Others will be looking forward to having an exchange.

 So I think there's a flexibility on how we do it.  We just try to, as I said, have it as interactive and inclusive as possible and at the same time trying to make it attractive for VIPs.  So we'll somehow have to find something in that middle ground.  And the more innovative we are, the more it is -- the less it is a trade-off but rather a win-win.  But that's something we need to develop together, I would say.

 Jorge, do you want to add some more ideas from our side?

 [ Laughter ]

 Thank you.  "Thank you," his eyes say, non-verbal communication.

 >>JORGE CANCIO:  Hello.  And thank you for giving me the floor again.  

 We have made -- going back, first, perhaps to Liesyl's intervention, I think we have tried to stick very much to the rules of the main session.  So we have proposed the main session that would go now to this high-level thematic session slot.  It has been supported by different MAG members.  It has been endorsed by one MAG member at least, or a couple of them.

 So I think we have been trying as host country to really play by the rules of the MAG, of the multistakeholder rules.  We've made workshop proposals as any other proposer.  I think we really want to stick to the rules and have this as bottom-up as possible.

 So I think it's a proposal from our side.  And, Thomas, of course, can correct me.  This is kind of an offer that we try to voice the convening power which we may have as a government with the engagement at the highest level from our president, that we make sure these high-level sessions are populated with real high-level people.  And this will gain attractiveness for the whole program of the IGF.

 One of the reasons why we didn't want to engage in a high-level track before the IGF in form of a zero day or a host country zero day was that we really believe in the IGF itself.  We don't want to make the zero day great.  We don't want to make a site event great.  We want to make the IGF relevant.  We want to center the attention on the program of the IGF, so that's -- and offer -- on our side, of course, the time is limited.  So we cannot have everything.

 But, as I said, we've tried to play by the rules as much as possible.  And this is -- and also from our side, which we honestly think would be for the benefit of the program, its attractiveness, and it's gaining attention from the broader public and also from political and business and civil society high-level stakeholders.

 On Juan's remark from before, which is similar to what Ji also mentioned, we didn't really think too much about what is polity.  We are not English native speakers anyway.  And myself as also Spanish native speaker, I should have thought about that before using "polity."

 But in the end, we are trying to describe with that title -- which is absolutely a working title.  We can change it -- is that, as I said before, there are many discussions on international, global frameworks of cooperation in the field of digital issues, what was termed before as Internet governance, but which we also perhaps with a little bit of marketing afterthought thought that it's not so catchy or so sexy anymore.  And we wanted to use this more digital nomenclature to make it more attractive.

 But, of course, this is something open to interpretation.

 And then returning to how the high-level people would participate, for sure we would have to look into this with the IGF secretariat, with the United Nations who are the real experts in how to keep the right balance.

 But we would need to take some positions, of course, to have some people on the panel and some people not on the panel.

 If we have two sessions of this kind and we don't want to revert to a sequence of speeches, we can talk perhaps about ten people on Monday afternoon because it's a hundred minutes of time.  And on Tuesday morning probably we could have more people because in principle it's a three-hour session.  Perhaps we could have a break or whatever.  We can be creative to have perhaps 15, 20 people engaging on the podium in the discussions.

 And, of course, the idea is to make it interactive with the audience, so with open mics.  And there would be a chance for those who cannot make it to the list just for grounds that there's no -- not time for everybody, could have their air time, so to say.

 By the way, if we return to previous meetings, there haven't been 20 ministers at these kinds of meetings.  So 20 real CEOs, very, very high-level people.  So if we are counting now with -- between 10, plus 20, 30 slots, 30 podium slots, so to say, I think we would have space for everyone to be present.  And I think we can be creative.  And, as I said before, we will do this with guidance and advice of our colleagues from the United Nations who know very well how to balance rightly.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Thomas and Jorge.

 I mean, I certainly appreciate all the efforts to help us raise the profile of the IGF.  I think it's something this community has wanted for a long time.  

 At the same time, I know -- having been in this community for so long -- that some of these languages, like, "raise the profile" are concepts that parts of the community are not all that comfortable with.  

 I think we need to understand that it's really critical.  If we want our work to be taken up appropriately across the world, if we want our work to be attended to, if we want great MAG representatives to continue, if we want more funds, more support, more donors, then raising the profile is just -- it's just something we need to do.  We certainly want to do that in a multistakeholder concept.

 Could I ask Thomas or Jorge to just state again what the working title is of the high-level thematic session on day two?  I know it comes from your main session proposal.  Do you have that?  Or does Jorge?

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Thank you.  I don't have it in front of me on paper or on the screen.  But the idea is to build -- and that is something that I guess for politicians is something they should be at least interested in, is to frame the thematic sessions about the opportunities and also challenges of the use of ICTs and new technologies including social media and what have you to, let's say, enhance, democratize public spheres, public debates, political discussions, political mobilization, and so on and so forth and the effects that this has on democracy, on public opinion.  

 And as we have seen in the past months and years, this can go in many directions.  But it's something that probably everybody is interested in because these new technologies influence the way that decisions, votes, elections, decisions about issues are made that affect all our daily lives and also have an economic effect.  So we think this is an issue that would be of interest of high-level and ordinary people from all stakeholders.  

 I don't know if we have the latest version of a concrete title.  I would refer to Jorge for this, but I would say that's the idea of the discussion.  Thank you.


 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Jorge, do you --

 >>JORGE CANCIO:  Hello.  Sorry for coming again.

 Well, for day two the title is, again, a working title.  And we would start with what we had presented as a main session proposal, which is The Impact of Digitization on Politics, Public Trust, and Democracy.  So it's an impact that could be positive, negative, could be with all the different shades of gray.  And we used the buzz words "digitization," which is more attractive also to enlist some of the audiences we are trying to attract to the IGF.

 And, of course, as Thomas said, there are many opportunities with digital tools for improving consultations to the people, democratic tools of participation, eVoting, polls, the association, many different aspects which may be enhanced by these tools.  

 And on the other side, of course, there are challenges.  And we think that a discussion at a high-level in the IGF is really the perfect setting for having all stakeholders, all regions of the world, having a debate on this and interacting with the audience.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Jorge.

 I'll go to the queue in a moment.  I think I just want to try and underline something to make sure that we're clear.  I don't actually see this proposal for Tuesday morning as a high-level session masquerading as something else.  I actually see it as a main session that I believe the Swiss are trying to work to getting very senior people in from both governments and private sector and other stakeholders.  So it would look like any other main session.  And I hope I'm not working this too hard.

 But if we were to see a main session proposal came in and had a really interesting subject matter with a number of high-level speakers on it and it fit within our main session format, I think our initial approach to it might be different than thinking of it -- I think when we first started talking about this, I think people thought of it as a second high-level event that somehow moved into our IGF space from day zero.  I think that's not at all what it is.  

 I'm probably just asking people to check their frameworks in their minds for a minute and keep an open mind as we go through the discussion.

 As I said, I hope I'm not working that too hard.

 Carlos, you have the floor.

 >>CARLOS FONSECA:  Thank you, Madam Chair.

 First thing, I just would like the opportunity to congratulate Thomas and Jorge, not only for the work they've been doing here but also for the work that I've been following in the GAC, for instance.  I think Thomas has been doing an excellent great job as GAC chair and now I see that, you know, his talent is also a benefit for us as a coordinator for this -- for this IGF.  

 So I thank you, Thomas, and thank you, Jorge, for your work.  

 Particularly with regards to this idea of having this Tuesday high-level session about the impact of digitation on politics, public trust, et cetera, I think it's -- personally think it's a real good idea.  

 This is, by definition, a political topic, and if we consider the context we live in where problems like fake news, mistrust, and digital technology, digital security, threats to data security privacy concerns, et cetera, et cetera, have become a global concern, I think it's very important to treat this as a political high-level topic.  

 A huge number of polls, both in Europe or in the United States -- just to mention some of them, Eurobarometer, U.S. Census Bureau, Center for International Governance Innovation, Pew Research Center, even the OECD made some polls -- they clearly show that the trust in the digital technology and also in the cyberspace is declining, is clearly declining, with a feeling of people losing control of their data but also their online identity, et cetera, et cetera.

 So there is a -- I think there is a growing mistrust in the cyberspace.  

 So this is very important to discuss and this should be discussed in the highest possible level, in the political level, not to mention the positive aspects because it -- we don't only have negative aspects.  I think like how the digital tools work as a facilitator in terms of people having access to public services or public information, but also the newest way of political and social mobilization, et cetera.  So I think it's a very good idea to have those issues, both the positive aspects and the negative aspects, the way they affect people's lives in a good or bad way to be discussed in the very -- the highest possible political level, so it's a very good idea.  

 And we've been talking about ways of raising the profile of IGF and engaging governments to this debate, so this is a way of doing that, you know, because this is the sort of matter that would interest or concern high-level political people.  You know, I think this is a very good idea to do, so I -- congratulations again and you have my full support.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Carlos.  Segun, you have the floor but you appear to have stepped out of the room so we'll come back to you.

 Flavio, you have the floor.

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER:  Thank you, Lynn.

 I am a little bit still confused about the proposals.  If we see the grid, we have one opening high-level session.  If we look at our -- and then a second high-level session on Tuesday morning.  If we look at our list of main session proposals, we see two proposals from the Swiss government.

 My question is:  Do these two proposals from the main sessions list correspond to those two high-level proposals?  No.  We have, in fact, three different proposals from the Swiss government, a high-level opening and then two main sessions.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  No, no, no.  Flavio, let me step -- I'll ask Jorge to speak.  No.  That needs to be updated.  So I don't know if it's Jorge or Thomas, but --

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER:  What do you mean by "updated"?  One of the main sessions proposals are --

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Jorge will explain what the status is of them.

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER: So this is just -- I have more questions also.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: No, but -- Okay.  But that would be a good one so we'll come back that right after you finish your comment.  It should be cleared up.

 >>FLAVIO WAGNER:  Okay.  So my second question, still regarding the proposals from the Swiss government, is that if we will use one of the slots we traditionally have for the main session, and the idea is to have this high-level thematic session in the form of a main session, then it should follow our guidelines for main sessions.  We have developed in the MAG along the years a set of guidelines regarding diversity of speakers and interaction with the audience and so on and so forth.  

 So I would strongly recommend that even if we accept one of those proposals from the Swiss government to fill this slot, that we still try to organize this as a traditional main session, following the guidelines having the required diversity and so on.  So this -- I think it's important.

 Another problem I see is that we have 45 minutes left until 1:00 p.m. and then we have other seven main session proposals on the list that we have not jet addressed, and we have to -- and we have a soft problem before us because we have only five slots left and we have one proposal from the NRIs for a full slot, one proposal from the dynamic coalitions for a half slot, 90 minutes, then we would have only three and a half remaining slots for six or seven additional proposals.  So we have to address this problem and we have 45 minutes to do this.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  And it pays for all of us to be succinct, therefore.

 If I could, with the queue, go directly to Jorge or Thomas to address this so that we clear up that point of confusion, and then we'll come back to the queue.  


 >>JORGE CANCIO:  Thank you so much, Lynn, and thank you, Flavio, for the question.

 Hopefully I'm -- we are clear now.  

 We had filed, some weeks ago, two main session proposals, in the spirit of playing by the MAG rules.

 One of those main session proposals has been taken over, so to say, by a number of other MAG members, and in fact has been merged with the proposal that was being prepared by Kenta, and we are now in a supporting role in that main session, so I don't think it should be viewed as a Swiss proposal anymore.  That was the "Creating an Inclusive Workforce in the Digital Economy," which is also a working title, I guess.

 And the other main session which was endorsed by two MAG members, at least, "The Impact of Digitization on Politics, Public Trust, and Democracy," is what would go as the basis of the Tuesday morning high-level thematic session.

 So to sum up, if you look at the grid, the five main sessions that are empty would not be encumbered by any Swiss main session proposal because we don't have any other Swiss main session proposal left.  We would have the Day 2 morning high-level thematic session and of course the Monday evening, which in any case was always clear that that would be the opening session.  So the -- the only alternative, in principle, would be the sequence of speeches.  I hope this is now a bit clearer, but I see my ambassador.

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Thank you.  Just to add to what Jorge said and maybe to reflect on what Flavio has said, we could actually call it -- instead of high-level thematic session, we could call it a high-level main session and show -- that would show that this is something new.  Again, I think we should apply, to the extent possible, the principles and the thinking behind the main sessions.

 If you get 30 VIPs, you cannot artificially, maybe, invent or modify the balance, depending on where they come from, like you can maybe with other experts.  So there may be a need for a little bit of flexibility in terms of basing -- relying on the rules that are usually applied to main sessions, which is what we're doing on our small European dialogue as well.  

 And this is, of course, a very delicate issue because you don't want to create precedents that endanger the whole, let's say, fundament of the nature of the IGF.  This is very clear and we would never want to do this.  But this does not mean, I think, that we cannot apply certain flexibility also with the aim to -- let's say given the broader context of the discussions where people are not satisfied with the level of let's say political outreach or political impact of the IGF.  And as many of you have said, I mean, this is -- this is still an experiment.  It is a stumbling forward, to some extent, and if we try and do things a little different every year, we can always have the discussion later what has actually worked and what hasn't.  But, yeah, we -- if we stick to what we had and are not willing to -- and do not have the courage to do things a little new, a little different, I think we'll never get to use the potential that is still unused as we think in the IGF.

 So -- but I think it may make sense to call it a high-level thematic session to show the link of the logic of the approach or expectation that this is still something that is not a closed thing for VIPs, completely detached from the rest of the world, but that we are actually trying to not just break the silos vertically or -- or horizontally but also vertically, but that we try to get so-called VIPs together with so-called experts in a dialogue which is at least something that is very dear to us.  I hope that that helps.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you.  Can you just comment on would that session actually be multistakeholder as well?  I think you said that earlier.  Or is it meant to be -- there's a question in the chat room -- meant to be sort of more strictly high-level?

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Of course.  I was trying to make a joke, but I think this is too serious so I will refrain for once from making silly remarks.  So yes.  The answer is yes.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Thomas.  Going back to the queue.  I have Segun in the queue.

 >>SEGUN OLUGBILE:  Yeah.  Thank you, Madam Chair.  I would like to appreciate the preparation and the commitment that we've seen so far on the part of the organizers, but I want to -- first, again, I also appreciate the fact that we are going to have a new approach to engaging the high-level panel because this has been a problem in our country where you have the so-called high-level session and you have the government officials coming in for such meetings and they will deliver the speech and the stakeholders not have the opportunity of interacting and all that, and they will communicate the words they want you to hear but they don't usually have the feedback from that community.  I think it's a very good one and I really want us to actually maintain it.

 Secondly, I remember when I was in Mexico, I had the definite privilege to be in Mexico, I discovered that -- I was expecting the to see the prince or the -- His Excellency, the -- either the prime minister or the president of that country, but unfortunately we weren't on -- we were not given that privilege to have such high-profile personalities in our midst.  So I don't know if it's going to be possible to have a commitment from your own side that we are going to have either the prime minister or the president of this country in -- to be, you know, part of the high-level session that we have here.

 I'm saying that because it would also enhance the visibility and the importance attached to the Internet Governance Forum.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Segun.  Just one second.  Was there something you --

 >> (Off microphone.)

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Segun.  

 And I know we are taking some time with this topic, but I -- I think it's important and I think it will -- you know, it is easing us into the rest of the main session discussion, but I think it's important because it is addressing some of the key areas for improvement that we've identified before.  It is new and I think it's recognized that, you know, there are some boundaries being pushed, which is why I think we should give it the additional time for some discussion here.

 So if you have some additional comments, please get in the queue.  There are five or so folks.  We'll probably take this up to the lunch hour, close to the lunch hour, and maybe we can do some other kind of high-level framing for the main session before we break for lunch.

 In the queue right now, I have Slobodan.  

 Slobodan, you have the floor.

 >>SLOBODAN MARKOVIC:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  

 First of all, I'd like to briefly stress again the importance of having the main session as interactive as possible and ensure a robust remote participation support.  For example, by making the main session room laid out in a manner that brings the remote moderator and technical facilities for remote participation as close to the main stage.  

 I mean, Thomas, you're probably already thinking in that direction but I had to stress this once again because it was not always the case in all of the IGFs.

 Second, it's related to one thing that keeps a static experience in our grid for years, and this is -- this is the open mic session, actually.

 I wonder, could we evaluate this slot briefly?  It doesn't seem to be wired into any of the debates or sessions, so it kind of hangs in the open, and in other fora like ICANN, for example, it has a specific purpose.  You are addressing the board directly, for example.  But here it seems like a slot for any other business but addressed to no one in particular, like an open speaker's box.  

 So I would like to hear briefly your thoughts, Chengetai, based on the previous IGF experiences, and Thomas, how do you see it at the forthcoming IGF, and also thoughts by the other MAG members that would like to share.  

 Can we make this slot more meaningful?  And if we can, can it be longer, perhaps, or held a couple of times a week?  Or if not, then should we drop it and -- and have more time for other more meaningful content?  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Slobodan.  Good comments.  

 I think Chengetai wanted to come in on the previous question as well.

 >>CHENGETAI MASANGO:  No.  I just wanted to comment on what Segun was asking, that yes, I mean, we are trying our best to get as high a level presentation -- representation at the IGF, and I think this year we can succeed, but of course we cannot confirm anything until invitations are sent out and they -- and replies are received.

 For the -- and also, just to -- just to add onto what Thomas is saying, the other side of the mind as well --

 [ Laughter ]

 >>CHENGETAI MASANGO:  -- yes, I mean this high-level segment is not just for governments per se.  I mean, we're going to try to make it as multistakeholder as possible, so -- and we have been talking to other people.  I mean, we've been talking to ICC/BASIS as well, to see whom they can bring from their side.  So we are collaborating with other people.

 And for the -- I mean, the rules of the main sessions, I think they speak for themselves, and we are going to try and see how close we can keep to them.  I mean, we're not going to do something completely different.  But this is slightly different.  It's not completely, you know, different out of the water.

 For the open mic session -- sorry.  I have to slow down a little bit.  

 For the open mic session, we've had mixed experiences with the open mic session.  Some years it's been very well-attended, and other years it hasn't been well-attended.  I think it was in the Istanbul session it wasn't well-attended.  And then we reduced the time, and then everybody had something to say in the next time around.  So we have to think about how we can advertise that and see how we can change it to make sure that we keep the attendance up.

 But, yes, we are open to any suggestions that you may have as well so we keep it.  Thanks.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Chengetai.

 Lee, you have the floor.

 >>LEE HIBBARD:  Thank you, Madam Chair.  And good afternoon to everybody.  Lee Hibbard from the Council of Europe.

 First of all, thank you to the Swiss authorities, of course.  I think I would defer to them in terms of making as multistakeholder as possible -- after working with Thomas and Jorge and others for so long over so many years in so many events which have to be multistakeholder and dynamic and not monologues but dialogues, I think we are in good hands.  And we will optimize that this year.

 Yes, I think this is -- this way forward that's being proposed is very good.  It's smart in the sense that clearly in my opinion there are two types of VIP, those who want to push information and those who are willing to have a dialogue.  Some are more comfortable in pushing information.  Some are comfortable in speaking more broadly and more openly about issues which they may or may not be covering in their respective organizations.

 That needs to be taken into account.  And that should be taken into account in terms of who may be in the opening ceremony, who can then otherwise fit in a more free open environment discussing with open mic or not.  That needs to be thought about.  Of course, that must be thought about.

 Yes, there's a need for VIPs, as many as possible or very important ones for the community.  Only last week in Tallinn in EuroDIG, when we talk about the success, people always refer to, "Oh, yes, there was the two heads of state and there was a prime minister and there were ministers."  Of course, it's not just those people.  There were 650 registrations.  But, clearly, these are indicators of success.  I think we need VIPs.  It's inescapable.

 I think the point which can change -- which can even make further progress this year through the Swiss authorities is what Thomas said a little bit earlier on which is the word "listen."  I think the word "listen" is really, really important in a sense that if in some way these sessions can also be a way to present information visually or otherwise of the scope and the depth of the discussions, of the scope and depth of the NRIs which I mentioned in the open consultation day, if that can be presented to VIPs in some way, then they take something back with them.  And that's something which I think is an important shift in trying to make them see just how important multistakeholder dialogue has grown over the ten years and where it's going for the next ten years.

 So some sort of visualization, some sort of information pushed back to the VIPs is very interesting.

 As well, in terms of VIPs coming to these sessions, I think I'm sure the Swiss authorities can do that, guidance to them is key in terms of how they are briefed.  So maybe targeted questions which really underline what they do in their organizations, really trying to be smart in what they address rather than just give them a freehand in making a speech or having just letting them do their own briefings and preparation.  That would be key, too.

 I think on top of that, we talked about the open ceremony in the first two days.  But, I mean, what about the end?  I mean, this is a four-day event or five-day event.  You know, to keep the momentum up and the numbers up, isn't it interesting to think about something a little bit later on in the program, maybe in the morning of the last day, to keep up the momentum at the level of VIPs so they don't all have to be crammed in at the beginning.  What about towards the end?

 Also, if you are going to deal with these people, you need -- if you are going to moderate and have a dynamic discussion, you need a VIP moderator.  That really is important to -- what's the word -- to ensure the respect between the panelists and the moderator.  That's key in terms of the smart approach this is trying to achieve, these sessions.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Lee.

 Thomas, is there anything you want to comment?

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  No, nothing particular.  But, of course, you're right.  And this is what we are also trying to get out of this, that when approaching high-level people, it's good to give them a context of the discussion of the issues.  And as we encourage them not to -- or we try to avoid them giving speeches, we would need to frame it in the invitation or in the personalized contacts that we have, frame it in a way that it actually fits their expertise, their interest, and that then the whole ensemble of the different ensemble creates something that works together and enables a dialogue.  I agree with Lee's point.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Thomas.

 Rafael, you have the floor.

 >>RAFAEL PEREZ GALINDO:  Thank you, Lynn.

 Very briefly, for the sake of time, I just want to recall Lee's recent words.  Pondering the explanations received, I find it an innovative approach outlined by Thomas and Jorge.  Thank you for that.  It's pretty seducing in terms of achieving the primary goal of having a true dialogue from the very beginning of the forum, promoting interaction and discussion.

 Hence, I support this proposal from the host country with the hope that it will contribute to improve the IGF.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Rafael.

 Jac, you have the floor.

 >>JAC sm KEE: Thank you, Chair.  First of all, I hugely appreciate the commitment and hard work that's been put into thinking through the format, the purpose and so on of the session and also the clarification that you have made in that this is a main session with high-level speakers.  It's not that it is specifically a distinct session.  

 I think that -- I think that clarity is critical.  I very much support Flavio's comments earlier, that the consideration is being made in the same process as all other main sessions in terms of criteria, discussions, and so forth.

 And for all main sessions to be placed on the table for discussion at the same moment.  Otherwise, it's quite difficult to consider them as a whole for the six slots, sort of not making assumptions that one slot is already taken.

 As mentioned earlier, I think also that this may set a risky precedent.  While acknowledging the importance of making efforts to raise the visibility of the discussions at IGF, it is also important to balance this against creating something which may be put the open participation of the IGF a little at risk.

 I also think it's critical for it not to be named as a high-level main session, that all -- and in the way to also recognize that all main sessions strive to bring speakers who hold high-ranking positions as well as different influencing power and stakes in the conversation, which is one of the values of IGF as well in terms of being able to facilitate discussions with different stakeholders.  Different positions have equal, albeit different stakes, in Internet policy discussion issues.

 It's not that I disagree with the idea behind this.  I think it's a really fantastic one, but really just sort of raising questions around process.  And I think that we are still definitely able to create a main session with high-level visibility and participation and ensure a lot of open participation from the floor, especially with strong moderation, as Lee raised earlier.  This has been done before.  

 Yeah, I just kind of want to take us a little bit -- questioning a little bit about what we're doing in terms of process.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you.  Thank you, Jac.

 Renata, you have the floor.

 >>RENATA AQUINO RIBEIRO:  Yes.  I would just note my support again.  And just -- we have always been talking about doing innovative sessions and trying more attractive formats.  When this is suddenly on the table, we are jumping scared at this opportunity.  So I would rather not see that.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Renata.


 >>ANJA GENGO: Thank you.  Yes, I'm just going to read support and endorsement from Israel, from the online participants, for the host country's proposal.  Also support from Alejandra in line with the comments that she thinks the high-level meeting has respected regional and developing countries balance.  

 Ginger supports also the -- supports, sorry, Flavio's latest comments.  

 And I believe Avri will say her comment now.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Avri, you have the floor.

 >>AVRI DORIA: Can I be heard?

 At first I wasn't planning to speak because I thought this was a foregone conclusion.  And so I was sort of afraid that my comments would be irrelevant.

 In my experience, most people skip the high-level stuff.  They recognize that as an incentive to get luminaries to attend, not something that's necessarily edifying.  

 And if this is high-level, how do we get those low-level people to participate?  Is there really a need for the low-level people to participate?  

 I'm also not sure that I understand how it is something new.  It's just going back to an older way of doing things.  It was spoken of as just another session in the main room.  I do not understand this.  Perhaps I obviously don't know how high-level persons think, but doesn't it need to be heralded as high level and special in order for them to be comfortable attending?

 Finally, I agree with the discomfort with this idea that has already been spoken of and agree with Flavio's comments.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Avri.

 Let me turn to Thomas.  I can't tell if he wants to comment or...

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER: Thank you.  I hope I understood what I read correctly.  Trying to respond to various concerns expressed by different people.

 Again, we can just continue back with it and keep complaining that the IGF does not have enough outreach and does not have political weight.  Listen to the voices of the discussions in New York where people say, "Well, the IGF is a civil society talk shop" and things like that.

 Or we try new things which are not fundamentally different from other things that have been tried before.  Avri is right.  Yes.  But times change and sometimes similar things work at a later stage if you do it slightly differently.

 And, yes, Avri, sometimes people that consider themselves -- are considered by others high level need to have something that is titled "high level" because otherwise they cannot come or will not come.  And then it's up to us normal people to think about whether we want to be with them or listen to them or talk to them.

 And the thing that we are trying to ensure we'll do all the best, that you will not just have to listen to them, that you will actually have the chance to talk to them.

 But, again, at some point in time, we need to -- we need to take a decision, do we go for something slightly different or do we not?  And then it will be the same like what we had.  And we will have the same discussions, we will have the same criticisms.  We will have the same opinions.

 I would just like to invite you to -- yeah, this is an experiment.  We need to keep experimenting with the formats, in particular, from what I perceive, need and came out of last year's retreat in -- close to New York.  We need to make the IGF politically relevant, or we want to make it politically relevant for a number of reasons.  Yeah, this is our role for us as Jorge has said.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Thomas.

 I have Sala in the queue, Elizabeth, and Ji.

 Sala, you have the floor.

 >>SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO:  Thank you, Chair.  First I'd like to just offer comments in relation to the nature of the Internet.  The evolution of the Internet will not be possible without change.  Risking the ability to unlearn, relearn, learn and innovate.  And for those who are involved in it, the relevance is determined by the capacity to learn from the past, look to the future, to improve IGF processes, or for those within private sector, public sector, civil society.  And especially for us in the MAG, we have a unique opportunity offered to us.  And it also means that at some -- to some extent, we have to ask ourselves whether we are willing to embrace change to working modalities, to make room for much-needed innovation.  To not adjust and change is to place a ceiling on the capacity for the IGF to improve.

 In terms of a mandate that the U.N. Secretary-General had commissioned the MAG in terms of roping the Addis Ababa action agenda, there have been levels of criticisms offered against the IGF in terms of meeting those targets.  Pertaining to funding and financing aspects of infrastructure, institutions, and agencies as was slightly alluded to by the Chair but she didn't mention the Addis Ababa action agenda.  But I'm mentioning it.

 The members of the U.N. Second Committee, whether we like it or not, are high level.  And whilst we have set up a committee wherein members include financial institutions like the World Bank, Asia Development Bank, the equivalent from Africa, and other parts of the globe, we, as a MAG, and even as the IGF secretariat or the IGF community have zero input into the conversation. 

 And not too long ago, two months ago we had the issue of being underbudgeted by 200,000.  So operationally this is just a matter of practicality.

 So with that, I would support that we need to be politically relevant.  Thank you, Madam Chair.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Sala.

 Jorge had asked for -- do you want to do it later, Jorge?  Okay.

 So I have Elizabeth in the queue.

 >>ELIZABETH THOMAS-RAYNAUD:  Thank you very much.  So I really have been listening and I hear the different perspectives very strongly.  And I have quite a lot of sympathy for -- and I thought Jac put a lot of the concerns and considerations very well in her intervention.

 I also have to say that from a very pragmatic point of view, we face this challenge all the time.  Everyone wants us to deliver a CEO to a meeting, and they feel that without the CEO at the meeting, the meeting will not be perceived as sufficiently important in the agenda, the issues that they're talking about, and that they will have difficulty getting sort of funding and attention and that kind of engagement.

 So I do -- I do really appreciate and understand those arguments, both from high-level business folks as well as government folks.

 At the same time, I'm wondering if there isn't a way in which we can reorder the high-level thematic session in order to make that distinction between what is the host country-led and coordinated activity so that it resists a little bit of the temptation or concerns that we're hearing about, you know, which is which and how does that work.  So maybe we don't have to choose between one and the other but we can actually have both.

 I realize there are probably some pragmatic and protocol issues but perhaps we could be creative having a sort of minister-level session, minister roundtable, high-level roundtable ahead of the opening ceremony instead of a thematic main session on day two which then would, again, give this perception that we -- this is different than before but organized in a way that still keeps people comfortable with which part is actually the program and not.  

 So I put that out for consideration and remain happy to work with the host country and the secretariat on appealing to high-level folks for these sessions.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Elizabeth.

 Ji, you have the floor.

 >>JI HAOJUN: Thank you, Madam Chair.  I very much respect the proposal made by our host, Switzerland.  And I do think that our ministers, should they come, they should know that the era of reading prepared text is forever gone and they should learn to participate in interactive discussions.

 But in the meantime, we should let them feel that they're respected.  They still enjoy the sense of privilege and be a dignitary.  

 And to make sure that such interactive discussion produce expected results, we have to make sure that simultaneous interpretation is of high quality because as we are having in the United Nations most of the time the simultaneous interpretation, particularly interpretation between Chinese and English, the quality is really lousy.  You know, sometimes it's totally -- cannot be understood at all.  And sometimes their English is much worse than mine even.  You can imagine.  So that's my impression.

 And about the timing arrangements of these sessions, why don't we arrange the opening ceremony on Sunday so that all the high profile, colorful things to be done in one day and after that they have a wonderful dinner, day of leisure, happiness.  Why should we intertwine the opening session with all these main sessions?  I just don't understand it.  Our minister can come one day earlier, I think.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Ji, thank you.  And I actually think your English is very, very good.  Thank you.  I think Thomas wants to come in on that.

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Thank you, and I'll ask Jorge to complement me.

 I think the question that Haojun asked is to some extent the answer to the question that Ginger and others are asking in the chat that unfortunately I don't have on my computer but Lynn is sometimes showing me to keep me informed.  

 What is different is that we are not trying to have a completely detached, completely in the hands of the host country, with no, let's say, formal accountability or responsibility to the rest of the IGF zero day high-level discussion.  

 This is not what we as Swiss government are looking for because we do not necessarily think that this is what, in the view of high-level people, should be, what they remember or what they experience from the IGF.  We want to bring them in, into the IGF, and as I said, not just build bridges horizontally but vertically and break these silos there.  This is, again, not so easily done and we have heard -- had several attempts in the past, so this is nothing new, per se.  But maybe the new element is that we are trying to bring them closer from -- that we're trying to move away from a separate -- definitely trying to move away from a monologue, series of monologues.  That's Point 1.  And we've had that all the past years, so it would be new if we didn't have that.  At least for the -- as far as I can remember back, we always had a series of monologues that most of the people were not really following, apart from those that have a reason.  So that is new.  

 The other element is that we are actually trying to -- we can -- let me try and put it in simple terms.  We're trying to get the VIPs used that they should move towards being participants in normal main sessions, workshops, like everybody else.  This is what -- what, for instance, we do on the Swiss IGF.  We have parliamentarians and others that participate in the normal discussion we don't have any panels so we can't put them on the panel.  

 In EuroDIG as well, we have some ministers that participate in normal discussions.  

 And I think this is the spirit that we are trying to promote, that we're all participating on equal footing, no matter what the stakeholder -- which stakeholder you come from, and also no matter what hierarchical level you come from.  But of course you need to take people -- people there.  So the idea is to basically have something that is between a normal main session and an ordinary, what they know from elsewhere, VIP session.  We are trying to like somehow give some water to the plants that grow in this gray zone.  That's -- I hope that I'm expressing myself in an understandable way.  And this is also not revolutionary new, but I think we are maybe more committed to trying this than in previous years.  Maybe Jorge can make my words more clear in case -- it's sometimes good that two people are trying to convey the same idea for people to understand.  Thank you, Jorge.

 >>JORGE CANCIO:  Thank you, Thomas, and thank you for all the comments.  

 Really what -- what we are trying to do is to tackle one of the gaps or one of the shortcomings that have been identified and which we are very well aware in the MAG and the wider IGF community, and this is to attract also very high-level people from the business sector and from the political sector, and I think we agree on that.

 So this is a tool to cover that gap, and we are really talking about the Tuesday morning about three hours.

 So I think we -- we have to focus on that because the Monday afternoon would be there in any case.  The only alternative is the sequence of speeches.  So I think we have to focus on the fact that we are talking about Tuesday morning, three hours, and we have to -- we are asking for your trust that we are able to bridge the difference between the purely MAG way of doing things and the zero day top-down way of doing things.

 We have circulated what would be probably the basis for this session of Tuesday morning to the MAG.  It has been endorsed by some MAG members.  I don't think that there has been any opposition to this proposal.  And it aligns, of course, with the main session guidelines.  That's how we've been doing things.

 A different thing is that in order to make this possible, we also need some flexibilities.  We need also to have some degree of freedom when shaping this session.

 So we would try our utmost best to keep with the spirit of the main session guidelines for these three hours.  We would do our best to keep it as stakeholder-diverse as possible, as is in our proposal.  And I think it's a very limited risk, and so we -- we shouldn't have -- we shouldn't be fearful for this little gap we have to jump upon because it's -- I think it's very much aligned with how main sessions are working normally, but we need this extra level of flexibility if we really want to be operational and be able to attract ministers, CEOs from companies.  And if we attract them to this high-level session or high-level main session, it is -- it becomes more probable that they will stay for the other main sessions or will get and attract other VIPs who will want to have bilaterals with them, et cetera, et cetera.  So we are just asking for a little bit of trust.

 Now, just on the last point, I don't remember if Thomas responded to Segun when he asked about our prime minister, our president -- in Switzerland, we don't have prime minister, we have federal councillors, which are our ministers, but we are planning very strongly to have our president here, which is our minister.  So that's our offer.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Jorge, and thank you very much for the very clear "ask."  Thomas?

 >>THOMAS SCHNEIDER:  Thank you all.  

 As announced earlier, I have actually to go Bern, but right now I get calls because I have to chair the GAC leadership call, which is the last one in preparation for the Johannesburg meeting.  I already get the phone call.  

 So Jorge will be our main brain for this afternoon, and of course I will be eager to follow up and get informed, and thank you again for this very constructive spirit.  This is a very challenging but also highly interesting thing that we are building here, so, yeah, thank you very much and see you or hear you at the next call.  Thank you.  Bye-bye.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Thomas.  I have three speakers left in the queue, Peter Major, Christine, and Jac, and then we'll try and figure out where we can leave this discussion and come back after lunch.  So Peter, you have the floor.

 >>PETER MAJOR:  Thank you, Lynn.  Before Ambassador Schneider leaves, I just want to give support on behalf of the CSTD, and just remembering I have chaired the working group on the improvements to the Internet Governance Forum and probably we could find some of the recommendations which this initiative is being supported by.  But I am absolutely convinced that the spirit of the working group and the outcome document of the working group is along this line, so I fully support.  

 Well, as we know the devil is in the details.  Probably we could rely on the Swiss diplomacy for the moderation of the session, which is extremely important to elevate all the difficulties between being high-level but also being involved in the community.  

 So once again, full support.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Peter.

 Christine, you have the floor.

 >>CHRISTINE ARIDA:  Thank you, Chair.  Yes, I'm -- I would also -- I would also like to speak in support of the proposal from our host.  I think from a government perspective, since I'm representing a government stakeholder, a previous host, I think this is a step towards integrating governments into the program more strongly.  Having it within the program and not separate outside in a zero day or before is definitely a step towards having high-level government also from other stakeholder groups be more integrated into further sessions which is actually something that we aim at.  So I really liked what Thomas said, that we just don't want them in one session, we really want everyone to be included and integrated in all the different sessions, work through our modalities of workshops and main sessions.  So this is definitely a step forward.  It is innovation towards that.  I think it -- it is something that the retreat also we discussed when we were in New York about how we can be innovative to attract governments.  So really, I do speak in favor of that.  Thank you very much.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Christine.  

 Jac, you have the floor.

 >>JAC SM KEE:  Thank you, Chair.  I'm thinking a lot, actually, because I really appreciate the kind of greater clarification around the intention, the kind of like transition that this is intended to do, moving the zero day into the main program.  

 It doesn't entirely respond to or alleviate all of my concerns around spaces, but I really very much appreciate the kind of motivation and longer-term objective behind it.

 I guess there's a couple of things around kind of transition processes, which is, sometimes from year to year -- because MAG members also change, conversations maybe -- it's not always brought from year to year, so something that's meant to be transitionary could end up being set in stone.  I guess that's one thing that I'm kind of wondering.  

 And then the second thing is, I -- you know, coming as a civil society rep, I also noticed quite acutely that civil society is excluded from any assumption of high-level, so who is high-level in civil society, I suppose.  

 No?  Yeah, like we have no CEOs, yeah?

 [ Laughter ]

 >>JAC SM KEE:  So that's -- I guess that's something to just like, okay, it's -- it's -- I think one of the -- just this is as a reminder that one of the values of IGF and why there is also a quite high level of commitment and investment by civil society in this space is precisely the multistakeholder different, albeit relatively -- kind of fairly open competitive to a lot of other U.N. decisions to speak to decision-makers in a very frank and open way where we don't have to have, you know, a big layer of cake between us.

 And I think that value also shouldn't be compromised as I'm thinking about this very, very important and pragmatic thing about visibility of engaging more high-level participation and so forth.  

 So I just also want to put that on the table that it's important and that it's absolutely not a question of trust.  I think no doubt there is a lot of trust.  But it's a -- it's really a question about process and participation.  

 And maybe that's also a moment then to think about how then can we think through the -- maybe the thinking of the -- of the formation or development of the session also through that lens.

 And lastly, I -- I sort of picked -- you know, like when Elizabeth was giving kind of her -- her suggestion on -- and -- like different ways of thinking through the session to try and deal with all the different tensions, I would love to explore that, I think.  Like, you know, a transition type of session for a transition type of process or intention.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Jac.  

 Let me see if I can kind of underline where we are and I know we're into the lunch hour so I will be short on this.

 I mean, it's probably pretty clear that I actually like the idea and I'm supportive of the idea.  Nevertheless, in my role as chair, I tried to listen really carefully and note where there was support and all the considerations.  

 I mean, I think there was strong support across a number of the stakeholder groups.  I think civil society was both some in support and some not in support in terms of the MAG representation here.

 I think in this instance, I would try and draw the consensus under the fact that we support the Swiss government going forward with that proposal, that we make sure that they come back to the MAG regularly and share the developments and can -- the MAG can help sort of steer that appropriately.  If nothing else, everybody will be aware of both the rationale for what is being done and some of the concerns and the opportunity.  The Swiss have proven themselves to be so, so open.  Certainly the opportunity to influence that as well.  

 My understanding is that the Swiss government meant to include civil society in the high-level as well, that there is absolutely no exclusion there.  You don't need a title of CEO or anything else, to your point, Jac, to do that.

 I also know that Thomas had said that the Swiss government would be willing to help identify additional high-level speakers, whether from private sector or government, to participate in the workshop proposals, as well as other main sessions, so they really are serious about integrating government, particularly, or high-level people in particular, across the IGF.

 So I would suggest that as we go through the workshop proposals and as we go through the main sessions, that we all really keep that in mind and take them up on that.  I think they have access that most of us don't have in our day-to-day job and that they're actually making available to us.  So I think we can have that as a subgoal.  And, you know, in my -- things become cast in stone usually if there's some success and I would hope in a multistakeholder model they only become cast in stone if there's actually some success and it's well-supported by the broad community.

 So I do hope we can leave that there, come back after lunch.  We will need to figure out where we're going with respect to the rest of the main session discussions and the workshop proposal section because we are getting somewhat pressed for time.  

 Ji, I'll give you the floor.  I'm recognizing that you are between us and lunch.

 >>JI HAOJUN:  Thank you, Chair.  I will be very brief.  

 Just want to put on the record that I have no objection to participation of NGOs in the high-level session, but we have to make sure that no controversy, particularly political controversy or disputes, arise from participation of NGOs in the high-level session.

 So to make sure that that doesn't happen, MAG members do need to have a say in which -- what type of NGOs should have such an opportunity.  We have to quarantine this.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  This session, in particular, is under the Swiss government.  It wouldn't be the MAG to rule or overrule their speakers.

 I see a lot of flags starting to go up in the room.  Is it really necessary that we respond further to this point?  

 If so, I have Aida, Juan, Rasha.  


 >>AIDA MAHMUTOVIC:  I have just a quick question that maybe our colleague from China can answer face-to-face.  What constitutes the --

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  You're not on the mic.

 >>AIDA MAHMUTOVIC:  Can you hear me now?  Can you hear me now?

 >> (Off microphone.)

 >>AIDA MAHMUTOVIC:  All right.  So this is just a question.  Maybe you decide to leave it in the air, but what constitutes a controversy and why do we connect it to only civil society that is supposed to bring it to the table when it comes to high-level or whatever you want level?  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  No.  I do agree, in fact, that it wasn't appropriate to probably make the comment but then certainly to tie it to a stakeholder.  

 Juan and then Rasha.

 >>JUAN FERNANDEZ:  Okay, now, I totally agree with Ji.  I have mentioned that concern very strongly for day zero.  And you said that in day zero with some strong objection that even day zero is not part of the U.N. program.  There's some way of channeling that.  

 But, definitely, if this is -- in day one, we really have to check that.  There are rules -- and I don't know if Aida is aware of that.  

 There's rules for the participation of NGOs in U.N. events.  In the case -- in general sense, Aida, is those that have been ECOSOC accredited.  In the case of this information society-related event, there's are a bit broader accreditation for NGOs.  I think that we should stick into that.  I can answer you off line.  I think it would be better.  

 But there have been cases of really bad situations that are embarrassing.  Mainly to the host country it's embarrassing.

 And I think we as MAG, remember, we are the wedding planners.  We are responsible for the whole wedding.  And we have to check that the -- for instance, that the musician doesn't sing a song that could attack the sensitivities maybe of the grandfather or the religion of the grandmother.  We have to check all those details when we are organizing the wedding, not to leave it just open like that and sing what you want to sing.

 So I think that this is our responsibility.  And, really, we have to look carefully to which kind of participation is there.

 There are rules, Chair.  You know that there are rules.  And those rules have to be kept to the line here.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR:  Thank you, Juan.

 Chengetai, you want to come in?

 >>CHENGETAI MASANGO:  Thank you very much, Juan.

 Yes, we've dealt with similar issues over the past IGFs.  And I think with the Swiss, I think -- I mean, they'll make the right decisions and I think it will -- but we will keep it in mind.  Yes, thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Just briefly I have Aida, Rasha, and Ji, and then we will definitively close the queue.

 >>AIDA MAHMUTOVIC: Just brief answer.  Thank you for the reminder.  I was aware of that.  

 And, also, sometimes both bride and groom make some embarrassments.  But who are we to judge?  Thank you.

 >>RASHA ABDULLA: Actually, as a member of civil society, I'm starting to get offended by the comments made.  I think this basically amounts to censorship.  I'm not -- certainly not arguing for any participant or any organization to go outside of the rules or speak whether or not -- be allowed to speak.  But I don't think we have the right to determine what is controversial or not or who is to say what.

 I think in the spirit of openness and inclusiveness, we are really not wedding planners.  I don't care if somebody gets embarrassed.  We should be -- we should be working for the greater good of the communities that we represent, not aiming to make things look good but aiming to actually do good.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Rasha.

 Chengetai wanted to come back in and we will go to Ji and Jac.  Sorry, I hadn't seen your flag.

 >>CHENGETAI MASANGO: I just wanted to add, yes, we do have the rules of conduct for the IGF meeting.  And we do explain those to the participants.  And I think in almost all the cases, people have adhered to it.  So but, you know...

 >>JI HAOJUN: Why I insist on exercising this right of censorship, I think we have this right and I will not apologize for this due right.

 Why we should access this quarantine or censorship is that there's certain groups which have liaison with certain extremists or terrorist groups which support terror-like rebel groups or wherever these terrorist groups locate.  Should such kind of NGO comes to the U.N. forum we'll be highly concerned.  We should make sure that such things doesn't happen.  Thank you.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: I have full trust in the Swiss authorities and the U.N. and a track record of 11 years of managing this quite successfully.

 I'll give the last word to Jac and then we'll go to lunch.

 >>JAC sm KEE: Thank you very much.  I'm really trying quite hard to contain my rage actually.  

 So thanks for the reminder about the rules of conduct.  Also, it is a U.N. space and there are also very specific rules around terms of engagement and whether or not you can directly address particular issues by a host government and so forth.  So I think we can trust in some of these processes.

 But if we start to think about having -- just creating spaces and criteria for good and bad civil society actors, good and bad NGOs, then are we also going to do that for governments and private sector?  Do we give spaces for good and bad government, good and bad private sectors violating human rights at different levels?  

 I think this is a terrible precedent to start staging.  So I would leave it at that.

 I think it is -- I appreciate the concern.  I appreciate that there has been some issues before.  And I appreciate also the work of the MAG and the secretariat in addressing them.  But I really think this is not a good tone to set about harmonization.

 >>CHAIR ST. AMOUR: Better done offline one to one.  I would like to stop here.  This is a full afternoon ahead of us.  This is already cutting into other meetings.  I understand there is a working group on communications and outreach, which is meeting at 1:15 in the cafeteria.  We all need to be back here promptly at 3:00 so we can press on with the still significant work in front of us.  Thank you very much.

 [ Break ]