IGF 2021 – Day 2 – Open Forum #48 Future of the Internet

The following are the outputs of the captioning taken during an IGF virtual intervention. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.



>> We all live in a digital world. We all need it to be open and safe.

>> We all want to trust.

>> And to be trusted.

>> We all despise control.

>> And desire freedom.

>> We are all united.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Welcome, everyone. Good morning to this morning's Open Forum on the Future of the Internet. We're really, really pleased to welcome you to this event this morning at the UN IGF. My name is Rhys Bowen, the Director for International Policy at the Department of Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport in the UK. We have panelists I'll introduce in a second. Welcome this morning. It's an early start. Hopefully a few more people will join us as we go through.

In terms of the structure of today's session, we're going to hear in a second an address from a UK minister setting out our view on this set of issues. We have a panel discussion then an open Q&A. There will be an opportunity for audience members to make ‑‑ post questions and answers at the end. If you want to do that, either put that in the Q & A panel in the Zoom function or by raising your hand. We'll manage that ourselves.

First of all, I'd like to introduce our panelists this morning. First, Anriette Esterhuysen, Chair of the Internet Governance Forum Multistakeholder Advisory Group. Good morning.

>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Good morning, Rhys.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Joanna Kulesza, Professor of Law at the University of Lodz. Good morning.

>> JOANNA KULESZA: Good morning, thank you for the kind introduction.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Last but not least, we have Lise Fuhr. Good morning, Lise.

>> LISE FUHR: Good morning. Good morning to the rest. Looking forward to our session.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thank you. The Future of the Internet is a massively important topic in the UK. We believe we're at a juncture of maintaining a global interoperable Internet and it's an important topic to consider at this conference. In order to uphold an open Internet, we think it's really important that governments, in particular, as part of the multistakeholder community, can no longer afford to be behind the curve and must play an active role in ensuring that the arrangements that we have benefited from so much over the last few decades remain in place. We need collaboration more than ever. That's why we think it's important that we're sharing perspectives at forums like the IGF.

This topic is one that we have also been driving through our presence at the G7 this year. I chaired our digital and tech track and the Future of the Internet and associated governance issues. It was a really key thing for our discussions. We also took that into our events, the Future Tech Forum which took place in London last week. We had around 200 people discussing, again, some of the same topics.

We are keen that we really maintain a very active debate. That we share these perspectives and, therefore, I'm really keen to hear everyone's views today on the panel and audience members as well.

With that, I'd like to introduce our minister, Mr. Chris Philp, UK Minister for Technology in the Digital Economy. He's going to say a few words before we open up our discussion. If I can ask the team to play the message. Thank you.

>> CHRIS PHILP: Thank you for that introduction. Thank you, all, for joining us at the UK's Open Forum on the Future of the Internet. Let me say how pleased I am to be here, albeit virtually. The IGF is a corner stone in the Internet governance ecosystem. An essential role in bringing together stakeholders and fostering inclusive policy discussions and influencing national, regional, and global action. Today's session on the Future of the Internet is a critical one. I'm especially pleased to be able to put forward the UK's perspective to spark discussion.

Almost half a century on from its first iterations, the Internet has reshaped the world as we know it and will continue to do so. At the core of the Internet sits the stack of infrastructure and protocols that make up this global network of networks.

Permissionless innovation, openness, decentralization, and interoperability have allowed the Internet to grow into the indispensable tool it is today. But the principles which have led to the evolution of the global Internet are increasingly being challenged.

We have seen recent proposals that seek to change and remake the very core of the Internet and steer it away from the values of freedom and open societies. We are all of us stakeholders of the Internet and have roles in supporting its evolution. And where better to discuss and build consensus of the Future of the Internet than right here at the IGF?

Over the coming decade, the evolution of the Internet will bring opportunities. As long as we can collectively navigate key challenges.

The Internet must become more inclusive as the digital divide narrows. It has been a great achievement at that of the world's population is online. But there is much more to do to ensure that no one is left behind in the future digital economy.

As the next 3 billion users come online, we need to ensure they can join a global Internet that reflect our open, free societies and democratic values. Any fragmentation or division of the Internet's underlying architecture will constrain and undermine the Internet with detrimental effects to global connectivity, prosperity, and fundamental freedoms. The Internet can become faster and more efficient by using emerging technologies from artificial intelligence, to next‑generation telecommunications, satellite networks, and eventually quantum computing.

The innovation and deployment of these new technologies should not lead to further consolidation and control. Creating a more centralized Internet and giving undue influence to a small group of stakeholders who do not necessarily have our best interests at heart.

With these opportunities and challenges ahead, now is the time for stakeholders to come together around the positive values we hold as fundamental for the evolution of the Internet. We are keen to work constructively with the wider community here at the IGF in developing and advocating for a new, positive, open, and free approach. An approach that allows us to understand nuances and tradeoffs. And to make informed decisions.

At the heart of this vision, we propose there should sit a new framework of economic security, social, governance, and technical lenses. This approach will help us understand different perspectives and find areas of agreement toward common goals.

And let's be clear. Working together is essential. There will always be areas of disagreement, but we must all have a shared objective to protect the underlying global network that makes up the Internet and which has been such a success.

Our five lenses are as follows. First, for our economies, we want to strive for a pro‑prosperity Internet. Spreading economic growth around the globe. We must harness the digital economy by supporting diverse and competitive markets and encouraging responsible and permissionless innovation. That includes making sure that excessive monopolies don't grow and exploit their position to the detriment of businesses and customers.

Secondly, security is critical to make sure the architecture of the Internet is resilient. And to make sure people are protected and criminals are not able to hide behind things like end‑to‑end encryption.

Thirdly, for society, the Internet must support democracy and ensure all users are able to participate online safely. We must close the digital divide. We must have a pro‑development Internet and affordable connectivity to the billions of people globally who still do not have access.

Fourthly for governance, we must consider how we maintain a globally governed Internet. And we must champion and support the functioning of an inclusive, multistakeholder governance process. Because that is how the Internet has become so successful today.

And finally, technically, we must support a scalable, interoperable, and open global Internet while maintaining, of course, environmental sustainability and connectivity for increasingly diverse users.

These five lenses represent a proactive and hopeful vision. And the UK looks forward to engaging with the multistakeholder community to discuss them.

To conclude, the story of the Internet is still being written. We must work together to ensure it evolves in a manner that reflects our open society values. We must protect the global technical core of the Internet, its openness, and its interoperability.

As the multistakeholder community, we need to reinforce key governance fora like the UN IGF as well as crucial technical fora.

First off, this is a positive change we seek to realize through this vision. Thank you very much for listening. Over to you, Rhys and the panel.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Hello, again, everyone. For those who joined during the minister's address, my name is Rhys Bowen, International Director for the Department of Digital Culture, Media, and Sports. That was a message from Chris Philp, Minister for the Digital and Technical Economy.

We're going to move on to our panel discussion now. I want to first of all explore the theme that Mr. Philp started to raise there around values for a positive vision for the Future of the Internet. Really, really key topic at the heart of what we're discussing this morning.

So I'd like first of all to ask Lise, if I can, what does a positive vision of the future of the Internet look like? What are the core values we're looking to uphold? Lise, great to get your perspective on that.

>> LISE FUHR: Thank you, Rhys. Thank you for inviting us and asking difficult questions. I think this is a very difficult one. But I think it's a good one. I very much welcome the speech by minister, Chris Philp. We agree on many of the aspects the Internet represents. First and foremost, in relation to economy, social opportunities. More than ever when it was developed a few ‑‑ or a decade ago.

But coming from the telco, of course, we also think connectivity is key to narrowing the digital divide. So we think this is an important step whenever you look at the future Internet.

And we have seen what great opportunities the Internet delivers. And we also see there are also challenges with security governance, infrastructure. But if we look at the future, to the point of your question, I think the pandemic accelerated some trends that started and showed us how we can change the way we live, we work, we learn. We went virtual. So that showed us the potential. And it showed how the Internet became more embedded in our lives.

So I think there are two things to look at when you look at the Future of the Internet. One is the usage. How the users are using the Internet. The other one is in the Internet as an infrastructure, because there are a lot of machine‑to‑machine hopping there. So that needs to be two different ways of viewing the Internet.

Very quickly, if we look at the Internet today, we see new requirements from the telco side. We see that videos is the principal driver of data. And account for at least 70% of the data traffic in our networks. Video means different ways of treating the Internet on a technical level. So there's a lot of content there. The users are using the Internet in different ways than they have done before.

And if you look at the Internet of things, we have seen that today, there are around 180 million connected devices in Europe. This is estimated to be 850 million by the end of the decade. So we see an increase in Internet things. And that means that we need to have different ways of using the Internet. We need low latency. We need a lot of bandwidth. But also the IP architecture is important here. And we talked about the fragmentation of the Internet. For me, when you look into machine‑to‑machine, I think we have IP fora and have IPv6. We need to move into IPv6. So we have a lot of things that are technical on the Internet. A lot of governmental things. Governance structures that need to be in place.

And looking at the Future of the Internet, I think it shows us we need to push for the connection of everyone. It becomes super important for our daily lives to be connected. But it's also more crucial than ever that we can trust the Internet. The users need to be able to trust it. That is both on misinformation, disinformation wise. So how we deal with that on the Internet is important. But also the security and resilience is important. So I think these will need to be the guiding principles both from the change of use, where we see users using it for schools, for jobs, for private lives. But also that the machines are going to be using it as an infrastructure. Thank you.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thanks very much, Lise. Great to hear your view. Particularly struck by your point on connectivity. That was actually a theme that came to the Future Tech Forum very strongly last week if London. As well as a core values proposition. The connectivity proposition is also crucially important for what we're trying to achieve here.

I'm also really interested in the machine versus sort of human interaction. And the different uses for that. And I think what that might mean for the kind of values we're trying to embody in the Internet is a really interesting kind of challenge. And trust is something that's absolutely core to our value set certainly in the UK. Something we're doing work on around disinformation.

I'd like to, if I can, bring in Joanna at this stage. We heard from Chris Philp and Lise about different aspects we can look at Internet governance and how we can think about what we're trying to achieve sort of going forward in the future. So, Joanna, your perspective on how we can draw on the different lenses and perspectives of what we're trying to achieve through our Internet policy. For a more rounded debate on the Internet's future. Joanna?

>> JOANNA KULESZA: Thank you very much, Rhys. Indeed, these four elements, lenses, you focus on in the intervention are crucial to further development of the multistakeholder model and one world/one Internet paradigm that we have developed thus far.

I particularly welcome the reference to security. Indeed, meeting as we are now in the hybrid format, ensuring safe communications, is paramount. I welcome the emphasis on security. I would, however, highlight that the way we have looked at the norms‑based order as we like to refer to it in these international relations, international law conversations, includes both security and individual rights.

So when we look at a norms‑based order in the perspective of international law as we know it, we look at both national sovereignty. We do have a lot of panels during this IGF on cyber sovereignty, digital sovereignty, and keeping the states safe and state infrastructure safe. It is, indeed, paramount.

I would be very cautious, though, with the reference, for example, to encryption as a tool that enables crime. It is broadly recognized that encryption, the right to encryption in itself, could be perceived as a human right. Particularly, when you look at governments that abuses surveillance technologies. I'm going to use the very recent advancements on the way the Pegasus software is being distributed with Poland being put on the blacklist by distributors. You can also see this element of private governance where it is, indeed, a private company that sets the standard for the use of surveillance technologies. For this, I welcome the reference to governments, the paradigms we have. As, indeed, it's largely private companies that tells us which is allowed and which is not.

Now, putting the focus on security. National sovereignty. Complemented by human rights. I'm going to make a strong argument for the application of international law as we know it in cyberspace. The exercises within the UN, both the UNGG and the working group in their reports have emphasized that international law applies to cyberspace as it is. As it stands. We would largely not need a new regime, even though these proposals are being put on the table. Why is that? The comparisons, for example, to the law of the sea or outer space, failed because these regimes followed a long‑standing customary practice. The Internet needs to reference the standing principles of state responsibility to the regions as we know them in international law. And human rights law. Including individual rights to privacy or freedom of expression. It's also directly applicable there, too.

I want to make one other point. When we talk about international law and how it applies to cyberspace, I'm going to argue we do have a standing framework that we can fall back on that you guys refer to as the core values. That is something we have developed after the second world war.

But there's also an element of capacity building that I believe you reference with your lens on the society. Where we need to make sure that we enable Internet access also through the soft skills. And a comprehensive approach to capacity building as has been developed by various communities, just to mention the GFC, which is hosting a panel during this IGF as well. But also Nigel and myself have had the opportunity to work together representing both end users and governments working together locally to best develop the capacities of individual end users as those today joining us. Happy to have remote help there. That's the second crucial element that I believe complements what you guys refer to as the core values.

So these are most welcome. Whereas the balancing exercise between different interests is definitely something we need to focus on. That would be my initial intervention. Thank you for giving me the floor.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Sure. Thank you very much. I think it's really important. Some of the high‑level titles we have here. I suspect we all recognize that those are things that are important here. It's actually getting underneath that, understanding the kind of tensions and choices and tradeoffs which I think is really where the heart of this conversation is. Thank you for giving an insight into aspects of that.

I'm going to turn to Anriette now. Before we go on to the second part of the discussion, I want to give you the opportunity to comment on this values part of what we've been focusing on. Whether, you know, what your view is around a positive vision of the Internet. What are the core values we need to uphold. How do we ensure that we can bring all these perspectives together into the debate. Would you comment on that before we move on to the second question?

>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: I would really like to. In fact, Rhys, I was thinking of asking you if I could. I think we're at a critical juncture. That's why it's so important that governments and others are thinking about what these values are. I think we're at a point where we know we want to preserve the interoperability of the Internet. We know we want to preserve its global nature. But we also know that if we don't protect the public core, and by the public core I mean the infrastructure. The domain name system. But I also mean the publicness of the Internet. The Internet as an open platform for innovation and for participation. We'll lose, I think, the power of the Internet. And I think that's very challenging. Because it does require policy. It does require some kind of regulatory approach. It does require looking at things like taxation. Looking at antitrust.

But looking at these in a very delicate and I think evidence‑based way so that you do not end up, you know, with the sledgehammer approach to doing this.

But I think aside from the values of human rights, of openness and inclusion and collaboration, for me, this idea of the publicness of the Internet is absolutely vital. I think we need to always recall and remember that what is ‑‑ that the Internet, itself, is a platform. It's an interoperable platform. And the behaviors that we are finding challenging with the Internet, both from the corporate sector, from governments who shut down the Internet, from people who use the Internet for harmful use. Those behaviors are not the Internet. And I think that, for me, is a value that we should preserve as well. Is that any kind of regulatory or policy intervention to preserve the Internet for positive use needs to target those behaviors and the actors who perpetrate those behaviors. Not the Internet, itself, as an open interoperable network.

So, yes, that's a bit of a ‑‑ and I think just a final thing, and you said it, yourself. And so did we hear in the opening remarks. Inclusion is important. I think the Internet as a platform for a connected world does require the unconnected to be connected. In a meaningful way. And, you know, it's a little bit like we'll never kill COVID until we have more and more people vaccinated. And I think the value of the Internet is really compromised by the fact that so many people are still not able to use it.

And that is not just a digital divide issue. It's a social and economic divide issue. So I think we need to keep that on our agendas as well. How do we try and create societies around the world that are more equal at a fundamental level, and by being more equal at an economic and social level, enables more equal participation in the Internet.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Anriette, thank you very much. I'm going to move on to question two. I'm going to stay with you, Anriette. We'll take contributions in reverse order of our panelists. A practical perspective what are the forums and collaboration necessary to uphold an open, global, interoperable Internet. One of the, I guess, characteristics of the Internet, a decentralized kind of entity, is there's a whole variety of different fora and moving I guess into the standards of development organisations that contribute to this whole. And, therefore, trying to ‑‑ I guess from a government perspective, at least, in how we can sort of try to influence the overall systems, embody the values we want. Is it a practical question?

So I would just like to ask you, perhaps, Anriette, to start off with, from your perspective, where are the critical forums, spaces for collaboration, in upholding a positive vision for the Internet? Where can we ask to help the multistakeholder ecosystem to be more resilient to change?

>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks for that. That's a question that becomes increasingly challenging to respond to. As you say, the Internet and Internet governance continues to diversify and be more distributed. I chaired an open forum yesterday of United Nations agencies. And their involvement in Internet governance. And it was remarkable that just in the UN system, from counterterrorism, to disarmament research, to social and economic development, to countering online gender‑based violence, they're struggling to exchange information and to collaborate.

I think what we have to accept is that Internet governance is distributed. It's multidisciplinary. And it's multistakeholder. So there are no easy solutions. There are multiple spaces. Joanna mentioned international law. International law means we have to engage the treaty bodies. We have to work with the Human Rights Council. And with the treaty bodies that oversee the major conventions on human rights.

Similarly, climate change is increasingly also looking at Internet governance‑related issues.

So the intergovernmental space remains important. I think particularly when we're looking at the openness of the Internet and Internet as a space where human rights are protected and defended, it's very important that governments negotiate around that and do peer reviews on protection and observance of human rights in those intergovernmental spaces. And that's just one sphere.

Regional spaces are very important. We're looking at the moment at what's happening with initiatives to introduce more regulation of Internet industry and companies. Europe is, obviously, leading that. And, but it's happening elsewhere as well. Ensuring that there's regional collaboration on that, and that it's multistakeholder, I think is very important if we are wanting to avoid these regulatory approaches becoming, creating more barriers than they are enabling.

And then at national level, I think national level is extremely important. And needs to be approached through quite a cautious way. Because if you have too much fragmentation and national approaches to Internet governance, you could undermine the interconnectedness and the commonness of Internet governance and the Internet ultimately being understood and governed as ‑‑ at a global level.

And I think local spaces are extremely important. Particularly, when we're looking at bridging the access divide in developing countries. Bringing in local government. Or even a traditional authorities in rural areas. Building community networks. You know, in a bottom‑up way. So it is very diverse. But, and on the industry level engagement. Soft regulation. Co‑regulation. Setting of standards. Also very important.

But ultimately, to come back to the IGF, I think what the IGF does, I think it actually becomes more and more important in this immensely distributed and complex Internet governance ecosystem. Our IGFs, global, regional, or national IGFs, really become the spaces where we can come together and engage this complexity. Learn more about it. And try and solve problems together.

And I think just, you know, in my last comment on this, I think what I would really like us to see ‑‑ and I think some people are already doing it ‑‑ is to use these multistakeholder spaces not just for easy consensus. You know, not just to all sit around the table and say we like the Internet, the Internet's important. I'm being a bit facetious. I think we sometimes do tend to avoid using our multistakeholder fora to really work through difference. Different approaches. Different interests. To conflict. And if we don't, I think we actually will undermine the power of the multistakeholder approach. Back to you, Rhys.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thank you very much. I think your last challenge there is a particularly apt one and one we may want to develop a little bit more.

I'm going to turn to Joanna next to come back to the same question around the spaces and critical forums to work together in order to uphold our positive vision. Perhaps one other aspect I'll maybe ask you to consider, Joanna, is the sort of point that this is a world that is evolving very quickly in terms of Internet, itself. International governance quite often takes longer to actually catch up in all areas. How do we manage in this space that differential between a very quickly evolving technical space, but an international governance piece by its nature that takes a little while to react. Let me hand over to you and get your perspective on this question.

>> JOANNA KULESZA: Thank you very much. That is, indeed, the question. If I had a comprehensive and workable answer to that question, I could solve all the world's problems. There's not an easy fix to this. The multistakeholder approach we have to Internet governance we still believe is the best way we can do this challenging job. Because the Internet is so complex. I'm not going to go back to the technicalities and the layers and the lasagnas and spaghettis we're trying to manage here. However, we still agree that looking at three groups of stakeholders, the governments included, is the only way we can move forward.

Now, having said this, references to international law are forever more increasing. I've been at this job for quite a while now. When I started, international law was not something you'd naturally use for Internet governance. You'd sometimes reference international relations. You would at times also try to use different paradigms from different areas of international law and international relations. But international law was not the tool, itself. However, it seems as if governments are showing increasing interest in regulating cyberspace with international law.

The one thing that seems to be missing in these debates ‑‑ we cannot do this alone. This is not a challenge that governments can individually solve with law. With that in mind, all of the fora that Anriette mentioned, what we need to keep in mind, is absolutely valid. I will not say there's one quick fix we could use to solve this challenge. I'd rather say we need to keep pushing forward keeping in mind the same objective. The interconnectivity. The openness. The innovation you guys emphasized so strongly.

Something we have not yet addressed is, for example, the copyright challenge. You look at different copyright regimes, the European one is quite restrictive. We're meeting in Europe. I'm going to use it as an example. What we might want to keep in mind is the overall objective of keeping the Internet open and whole. As opposed to national cyberspaces being protected with national laws.

So, indeed, using the forums we have within the UN, within the ITU, but also the so‑called technical Internet governance with the policies and standards of the IGF, is something we need to keep in mind.

Effectively what this comes down to for governments and Civil Society actors, alike, is keeping your eyes open to all the changes as they advance. Pushing this vehicle forward one step at a time without causing permanent damage to the way that these infrastructures are being managed.

So I don't think I have an easy fix there. I don't think anyone does. But at the same time, we have so many forums. And we seem to be able to identify the far‑reaching perspective we want to obtain as you guys noted in your statement with the Internet remaining open and permissionless for innovation, if you will. So that is something we need to keep in mind. And just keeping the conversations going as we do at the IGF. Not a very practical response. But I don't think there's a better one at this point. Thank you for putting the question forward, though, Rhys.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Joanna, thank you very much. I'm going to turn now to Lise, if I can, for your perspective on the same question. I'm really interested from an industry perspective. You are obviously part of ‑‑ this is a multistakeholder participant, but also as somebody who's, you know, representing companies who are effectively delivering large aspects of Internet connectivity that we all rely on. And, therefore, are looking for kind of practical solutions as well as kind of governance conversations. Lise, what's your perspective about the key organisations, key spaces we need to be focusing on in order to ensure the positive vision we just started to describe is made a reality?

>> LISE FUHR: Yeah. Thank you for the question, Rhys. I agree. There are no easy solutions to this. What I would like to bring in, which is a bit tricky, is what we see now here in Brussels is that we have regulation coming in taking over the Digital Service Act, the Digital Market Act. While this seems far away from Internet governance and also IGF, I believe this will actually influence part of what we're talking about today in maybe five years' time. Because this will change the way some of the market players are behaving on the Internet and the way we use the Internet. It will change the way services are delivered.

And I think it's important we have the multistakeholder model as we are having here with IGF and also with ICANN. I also think it's important, and we said this last year, that we have all stakeholders around the table. And this is where it becomes difficult. Because these discussions we're having today are quite difficult just to step into. They're either very technical or very much into the Internet lingo. So we need to make sure that when we talk about inclusion, we talk about inclusion in a broader sense.

As a telco, we, of course, are extremely depending on standards. So when you talk about the Internet and you talk about governance, back to the point posted by Anriette saying she forgot to underline the importance of technical governance. That is key, too.

So talking about important critical forum, or fora, I think there are many. I think the IGF is important. I think ICANN is important. But what I like about these parts is that they are multistakeholder. And that gives us, again, the dilemma, I think Joanna mentioned it. We have fast‑moving technology. We have a slow governance model. But I believe we need to deal with this. And we cannot leave someone out of these discussions. Because this is extremely important. And that's back also to the public core that Anriette was talking about that needs to be preserved. Yes, it needs to be preserved and it needs to be also allowed to develop. So we need to have this preserve the core values. But also allow for new innovations. Because otherwise, we get stuck in the old models.

But from my side, whatever is defined both on IGF but also the more standout bodies, is depending or will define how we deal with security. How we deal with infrastructure. How we deal with the services. On the Internet. So we need to see it all in cohesion. We need to see it all as interconnected. And interrelated. So whenever we talk human rights, we also need to talk standards. Whenever we talk open access, we also need to talk technology. So everything is interconnected. And this is what makes it difficult for everyone to understand. Because we always sit either with the legal part. The human part. The technical part. But we need to make sure these are meeting each other.

And, again, back to Joanna. I'm not giving any solutions. But from our side, I think we often forget the technical parts. The technical standards. And those bodies in discussing all of this. Thank you.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thank you very much, Lise. Really, really useful to get that perspective. Also drawing on Anriette's point on the technical side is crucially important.

I'm going to make a few closing remarks of this part of the forum this morning and go to questions from the audience in a second. I see quite a few have come in already. I'll try to bring colleagues in in a second. We've had a useful discussion today. Thank you for everyone's contributions. I think the importance of the kind of core value set around Internet governance I think is something that everyone on the panel sort of agrees with. Sort of nuances I just want to bring out. I think that the point around connectivity and the importance of ensuring that those who are not currently part of the Internet community become so I think is a really important point that's been emphasized by a number of different panelists.

I think one of the other aspects I really wanted to draw out was to Lise's point around now also particularly going forward, the fact that there will be many different users of Internet including actually nonhumans. That kind of Internet as an infrastructure perspective. Internet as a way of connecting together machines. Something we should consider more around.

I think the piece that Anriette, at the end of her intervention and the end of the first question, as well as using, you know, we have a lot we agree on. It's important we kind of, you know, do consolidate that. And ensure that consensus kind of recognized. Actually, there are also some areas where there's a lot of debate and challenge. We should use our multistakeholder fora for those issues. Because those are issues we need to work through as a community.

In terms of the second question, everyone on the panel kind of recognized the importance of the multistakeholder approach. Despite its limitations around speed and sometimes the disaggregated nature of it makes it quite difficult to hear. I think there are clearly challenges to it. We talked about speed in general. Again, Lise at the end particularly talked about the fact they needed to insure innovation was kind of maintained. Think that's something we needs to consider further.

I'm going to start by bringing in an observation or question. Andrew, please.

>> ANDREW: Hi there. Good morning. Hopefully you can hear me okay.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Yes, we can. Please introduce yourself, Andrew.

>> ANDREW: Fantastic. My name is Andrew. I'm involved in public policy and affairs in the tech sector. I posted a couple questions in the chat. I realized there's a raise hand function. I'll briefly summarize. Firstly, continue the discussion on Internet governance. I am concerned that a lot ‑‑ the Internet standards bodies are effectively dominated by the large tech companies. While they're open, the people in the room are primarily from the tech sector. The voice of the end user is really heard. And governments are largely absent from the room with one or two notable exceptions. Likewise, regulators and others of the multistakeholder community.

So first question is how can we get great participation by the multistakeholder community in standard setting? Because a lot of the standards bodies ignore the public policy impacts of their standards choices. So if the multistakeholders aren't in the room, then potentially bad impacts will happen. And won't even be discussed, let alone, avoided.

So that will be the first question. Very briefly, second question, start of the conversation and references to the importance of encryption. And I wonder if occasionally people are overweighting the importance or the priority of encryption as it relates to privacy. And the benefits that gives to communication. And completely ignoring the right to privacy and safety. Indeed, of the victims of crime such as child sex abuse. How do we balance those conflicting rights? Because at the moment, a lot of the conversation seems to focus purely on the rights of people communicating. And ignoring some of the harms that are caused. Thanks, Rhys.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thank you very much, Andrew. I'm going to pose the first question, if I can, around how do we ensure there's perspectives in the governments and standards‑making process to Anriette if I can and ask the question around encryption, how do we balance the different rights at stake here. First of all, I think to Joanna, if I can. I might also ask the Lise's perspective. Can you speak to Andrew's first question?

>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Rhys. Andrew, you're absolutely right. If we want to use the multistakeholder model right, we have to get the right people in the room. They won't always be the same people. It depends on what we are discussing. So this notion of multistakeholder which is simply bringing business, technical communities, Civil Society, government, together is not enough. We need to analyze the issue and make sure the right stakeholders and the right individuals and institutions are in the room.

But Andrew, actually, I think you'll be surprised to see who is in the room. I think over time, what we've seen at the IGF is the big Internet companies are sending fewer people to global IGFs. In fact, I think some of them, U.S.‑based ones, are spending much more time in Washington, D.C., talking to the senate or to Congress than they are talking to global multistakeholder fora. That's been a big shift. Ten years ago it looked very different. I think that's a reflection of the changes in trends to Internet policy. Or trends in approaches to Internet policy.

I think what I have seen over time is that the two stakeholder groups who from my perspective remain the most solidly committed to this are the Civil Society and governments. I think the technical community is the glue that is so critical. And I have seen over time as well how some of the big technical governance institutions ‑‑ this is to some extent a challenge to them. Like the Internet Society and ICANN, for example. The IETF and other standard setting and protocol bodies. They participate, follow, but we need a stronger presence. We need organisations, like ETNO, but we need more. I think, Andrew, that is very important. We continue to make sure that the cross‑fertilization that can only happen if you have the devil in the detail allowed to surface in the multistakeholder space. And then you attack or interrogate that devil from a multistakeholder perspective. You're very right. I think you would be surprised to see this notion ‑‑ I think many people make the assumption that the large Internet companies have captured the multistakeholder spaces. That's certainly not my experience anymore.

I think what I really am very impressed by is someone from Civil Society is effort from government. I've seen that increased. Of course, there are governments. I come from Africa. There are governments that shut down the Internet when there's an election. What I've seen, actually, is so much positive examples of governments becoming more invested in this approach. I think that's very hopeful. We need the technical community in the room as well.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thank you very much. Let me talk about how we balance the rights here and Andrew used example of encryption as a key topic of debate.

>> JOANNA KULESZA: That is an ongoing debate. When we have a debate around prioritizing security, it's someone from law enforcement who asks the question of whether you would allow someone who had abused your own child to hide behind encryption. Or whether you would rather agree for the police to have the keys to encryption to protect your child. That is an emotional argument that is often used. We debate it. So this is an ongoing discussion. If I was to give you my personal insight on how we might want to find a solution to that, I would probably fall back on the general principles of international law and national law. How to manage a society in a fair manner. So it is about transparency. It's about building trust.

I've talked to my colleagues from the Netherlands who say they have a very reliable national system of governmental control over law enforcement. That is transparent. The society trusts the commission. Set up by the parliament that supervises the law enforcement and the surveillance industry, if you will. So there seems to be a certain balance between transparency and effectiveness of national law enforcement that allows them to use certain surveillance technologies.

I have called this out before. I don't want to turn this into a political debate. In Poland recently, since we're meeting hybrid in Katowice, there was a debate around the use of Pegasus. I mentioned that before. There's a private company that offers that service to certain countries and doesn't offer it to others. Central European countries have just been blacklisted a few weeks ago. You can see the question of transparency, reliance, trust toward those who use surveillance technologies at the cost of encryption, to me, is crucial to answer that question. I don't have a universal once. I'm going to argue that encryption is a human right. We have a right to privacy. That is something that was recommended by the European Parliament at the face of the Snowden revelations. If you know you're being surveilled, encrypt your communications. I'm going to stick with that answer. I do agree there can be exceptions which every country, every society, needs to revise for themselves. Install institutions that will protect individual rights and use those surveillance technologies in a responsible manner. That's going to be my answer. I do sense a potential for a coffee break discussion which we'll probably not have. When we meet face to face again, I will pick up that topic. Thank you.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thank you very much, Joanna. Lise, I'm not going to come to you now. I'm going to ask our moderator to bring two questions in from our wider chat given the time we have available. Maybe I can turn to Nigel to raise a couple questions from our audience.

>> NIGEL HICKSON: Yes, thank you very much, Rhys. Nigel Hickson here. The first one was from Collin. He asks, web search is controlled with more than 99% the market share in the UK and many other countries. The minister says he doesn't want to see monopolies grow. So, and given that much of the proposed regulation like the Online Safety Bill in the UK is welcomed by the main platforms. How will the UK and other countries demand that U.S. regulators act decisively against these U.S. ‑‑ sorry, oligopolies? That was the first question.

And the other question which I think is good for our last question in some sense is from Vuren. And he notes that given the dynamic nature of this market and the trends in the Internet market, how can those in 35s to 40‑year‑olds, not least, older ones, can keep updated with the digital advances with the view to providing quality advice and information, et cetera? Thank you very much.

>> RHYS BOWEN: Thanks very much, Nigel. Might be a more government‑focused question. Let me make a small remark myself. I might bring in others. Lise to help us understand that perspective. In terms of the government policy question, the global debates about the competition and about the policy response, that I think has become much more active in the last two years, I would say. We have legislation, particularly, around online competition coming through in the EU. The UK. Some of the jurisdictions and various proposals for legislation in the U.S. as well. So I think that set of barriers has become much more active.

From the G7 perspective, we did include a discussion on this this year. One of the outcomes of that was for G7 competition regulators to come together to see how they can enhance their cooperation which also picks up some of our earlier discussion around coordination here. And that actually took place in London last week. Lina Khan from the U.S. joined the Future Tech Forum last week and was quite intensive discussions with global competition leads.

I think this is an area where policy is quite active. I think over the next kind of 18 months, we'll see relative significant initiatives come to fruition in a number of different jurisdictions. I think we will see the consequence of that subsequently.

I guess my answer from a government policymaking perspective, this is an area that's very active in kind of watch this space.

On the second question, let me turn to you, Lise, and talk about how people in general can stay up to date with the issues here.

>> LISE FUHR: Well, it is a very difficult question. Because if you look at the Internet, there are many trends. There are the technical trends. If you look at social media, how you use content. Big platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others. Not to forget all the new ones that are popping up all the time. Some are becoming more youth focused than others.

What we tried to do as many of the members of ETNO is try and educate people just to have different ways of giving information about both security but also be careful on how you use the Internet. Don't be afraid of using the Internet. That, for us, is an important message.

How to keep up with the trends, it is as impossible today as it was 100 years ago when the youth was the one delivering all the new and the new innovations, et cetera. I don't think there's one fix at all. Either you go in those places. Either use LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, et cetera. Or, and learn from that. Or you try to focus yourself toward the technical part.

But to me, that's a super tricky question, honestly.

>> RHYS BOWEN: It is. Thank you so much for trying to answer it, Lise. Appreciate that. I'm conscious we're almost out of time. We're going to wrap up now. First and foremost, thank you to everybody who joined the discussion this afternoon or this morning depending where you are. It's a really, really important topic. I'm grateful for your engagement around it.

I'd like to thank our hosts in Poland who put on this fantastic IGF event and flexible and agile of moving to a hybrid format, Coronavirus and the regulations around it.

I'd like to particularly thank our three panelists. Anriette Esterhuysen, Chair of the Internet Governance Forum Multistakeholder Group. Joanna Kulesza at the University of Lodz. And Lise Fuhr. Thank you to all of you for joining us this morning.

We'd like to finally sort of emphasize that this is obviously a very quick discussion on a massively important topic. We're committed and think it's really important that we continue to work together toward a positive vision for the future of the Internet based on open‑society values. We're really grateful from the UK perspective that this debate is becoming a more active one. And one that we're very keen to participate in going forward.

And we welcome a lot of the kind of shared views that have been raised today around what we're trying to achieve and challenges around doing it. We look forward to working with you all, partners across the community going forward, as we try to ensure what comes next to the Internet delivers the absolute best for the societies that we're all part of and we represent.

Thank you very much for your contributions this morning. And I hope you enjoy the other aspects of the conference. Thank you.

>> LISE FUHR: Thank you. Pleasure.

>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Rhys. Thanks, everyone. I have to tell you, I'm sitting in the room looking at a large crowd for the IGF. People looked really engaged. Congratulations to everyone.

>> RHYS BOWEN: That's great. Thank you, everyone. Great, thank you, all.

>> JOANNA KULESZA: Thank you, everyone. Bye.

>> Thank you.

>> Thank you. Bye.