IGF Open Consultations
01 DEC 2014 (MORNING SESSION)
The following is the output of the real-time captioning taken during the December 2014 IGF Open Consultations and MAG Meetings, 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 session, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to the open consultations and MAG meetings for the 2015 cycle, the first one.
Just before we start, I would just like to say two things. When you are requesting the floor, if you want to request the floor, please just put up your name plate and put it down like this, and then we will write your name down and the Chair will call your name and then you can speak. If you don't have a name plate, just raise your hand. And then I will indicate when I've seen you and I will write your name down.
Before we start, I also have to read this. The ITU has asked me to read this.
The ITU is pilot testing a system to allow the remote participation of delegates. When making an intervention remotely, please remember that your remarks are being interpreted into six languages. Please closely follow the procedure that was submitted to you.
It is also important to keep the following points in mind. Audio quality deemed satisfactory by a delegate may be insufficient for interpretation purposes. For interpreters, the audio quality has to be near perfect. Audio quality may deteriorate without prior notice eventually hindering an interpreter's ability to provide a smooth rendering.
In extreme cases, despite their training and experience, our interpreters may have to refrain from interpreting all together. A remote delegate may on occasion be asked to repeat a statement and may have his statement paraphrased by an official in the room. Thank you very much for your cooperation.
And also when you request the floor, when you are given the floor, could you please state your name clearly and slowly and also the organization you're from and whether you are speaking in your individual capacity or for the organization. Thank you.
So without further ado, I will give the floor to Ambassador Karklins, the Chair.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much, Chengetai. Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Janis Karklins. I am ambassador of Latvia and the Chair of the IGF Multistakeholder Advisory Group. Let me warmly welcome you to the open consultations that are the first in the series in preparing the next IGF meeting which will take place in Joao Pessoa, Brazil, November 2015. So we are holding this meeting in the premises of ITU and prior going to adoption of agenda. I would like to invite Mr. Francois Rancy, the director of ITU Radio Communications Bureau to make a welcoming remarks on behalf of ITU. Francois, thank you.
>> FRANCOIS RANCY: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Excellencies, dear colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, it's a great pleasure for me to welcome you on behalf of Dr. Hamadoun Toure, welcoming you to the ITU for the IGF open consultation Multistakeholder Advisory Group meetings.
Dr. Toure apologized for not being here today. He is looking forward with great interest to hearing the discussions of today's meetings.
Today is the first day of the last month of 2014, which has been a tremendously busy year for all of us, particularly with all the various meetings and new initiatives on Internet governance.
Last month also was held the ITU plenipotentiary conference, which reviewed the three plenipotentiary resolutions on Internet-related issues. And Mrs. Bogdun this afternoon will make a presentation on the outcome of this important conference.
Wrapping up this very busy year in Internet governance, one thing which is clear and obvious to all of us here today is that the Internet is now universally recognized as a global public good.
What is less obvious perhaps is that the exceptional growth of the Internet, one of the greatest engineering feats ever achieved, was only made possible by a level of collaboration and cooperation between stakeholders which has very few parallels in the history of mankind.
As a result, the Internet is not just an inspirational story of coherence and continuity but an inspirational story of community, too.
Today more than ever we must continue to work together to ensure that all people wherever they live and whatever economic means have secure, equitable, and full-level access to this vital resource and that we can use it with confidence.
We must also work together to harness the power of the Internet to help drive the post-2015 development agenda, empowering a (indiscernible) suitable, social, and economic development for all.
I firmly believe that we have the moral responsibility and obligation to expedite the implementation of this by understanding each over and finding better ways to work together so that we all become winners and partners.
Welcome, again, to the ITU. I wish you very fruitful discussion over the next two days. Thank you very much.
[ Applause ]
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you very much, Mr. Rancy, for your opening remarks and warm welcome. Certainly we're very grateful for ITU for hosting us during these three days. That is very kind of symbolic gesture, specifically after the renewal of ITU leadership team during the plenipotentiary conference. We're really looking forward to working very closely with ITU and ITU leadership. So certainly looking forward to have many ITU representatives among us during the preparatory process and at the IGF meeting itself.
And congratulations to you for elections.
So, ladies and gentlemen, before going further, I would like to seek approval of the agenda of open consultations. Agenda was published on the Web site. You have opportunity to examine it. Basically, we will be going through analysis of positive achievements during the IGF 2014 and we'll be talking through a few challenges that need to be taken into account in preparing IGF 2015. During that debate, there also will be opportunity to outline your vision about IGF 2015 meeting itself. So that debate should bring us maybe to lunch or slightly after that. And in the afternoon, we would be talking through and receiving information about the processes linked to IGF or Internet governance that may have some impact to the shape of IGF 2015 meeting in Brazil. So we will be listening to presentations of outcomes of plenipotentiary conference of ITU, CSTD, WSIS +10 review preparations, the CSTD Working Group on Enhanced Cooperation results, the ICANN CGI and WEF initiative, otherwise known as NETmundial Initiative and WSIS +10 review preparations that are scheduled in December 2015 in New York. So this is agenda for today's open consultations. And then tomorrow we will be going into MAG meeting mode with presence of observers as usual.
So are we in a position to endorse today's agenda of open consultations? Any comments? Any questions? I see none. We may take that agenda as adopted, and we will follow our work to this adopted agenda.
So, ladies and gentlemen, abusing my power of the Chair, I will take the floor now as is suggested by the agenda. And I would like say a few words how I see our task and preparatory process of next year's meeting. So, first of all, let me start by congratulating new MAG members who were appointed by the Secretary-General to serve in the Multistakeholder Advisory Group and at the same time express my sincere gratitude for those MAG members who have accomplished their round of duty in the MAG and helped us enormously in preparing Istanbul IGF meeting.
So this year is of particular importance because we're entering a preparation of the last meeting of the cycle of five years. And the preparations and the IGF meeting itself will be under maybe strengthened scrutiny by intergovernmental machinery who will be talking and reflecting on the implementation of WSIS +10 outcomes as well as renewal of IGF mandate for next period of time.
You know that this discussion is ongoing in New York during the Second Committee of U.N. General Assembly. There is a proposal of Brazilian -- sorry, Mexican delegation on the table which suggests extension of the IGF mandate. But it is not clear whether this proposal will be accepted or not. The negotiation round will take place in New York today and maybe tomorrow we will hear some news from New York in this respect on the development.
Nevertheless, whatever decision will be taken at the second committee, it will be -- it will have impact on our preparations.
The preparations should take into account also results and dynamics in other organizations or foras where Internet governance questions are addressed and certainly everything that is linked with WSIS +10 review and preparation for December 2015 meeting in U.N. General Assembly as well as ITU plenipotentiary conference that took place earlier this year in Busan, Korea, as well as processes that are taking place in other international organizations. And UNESCO is the first that comes to mind specifically taking into account the task which was given to UNESCO at the last general conference to work on questions related to freedom of expression, access, ethics on the Internet. And that will certainly have impact also on our preparations.
So in a run-up to Istanbul meeting, the work of the MAG was guided by the recommendations of the working group on improvements of IGF. And this year should not be an exemption. I think this should be our -- I wouldn't like to call the name, but that should be the only reference book that we have in thinking about the IGF 2015.
Why? Because this will be the reference to measure the efficiency and effectiveness of the IGF MAG when it will come to discussion about extension of the mandate of the IGF. So, therefore, that is important to keep that in mind.
I will send around maybe slightly later the document which was prepared in 2013 analyzing how far IGF and MAG has gone in implementing the working group recommendations, but that would be only for your reference. And specifically for those new MAG members, that would be interesting for you to read and familiarize yourself with what we're supposed to do.
And, finally, I would like also to mention the link or potential link that we may wish to consider between the IGF Brazil and WSIS +10 review process and the preparation of the high-level conference in December 2015.
As you know, the modalities of the preparation of that intergovernmental meeting suggests that U.N. General Assembly president should consult other stakeholders on the substance of the intergovernmental negotiations.
The two co-facilitators will be nominated in June 2015 by the U.N. General Assembly president. And after nomination, most probably we will hear the outline of the process and timeline of intergovernmental negotiations that will lead to the meeting in December in New York at the General Assembly.
Our IGF meeting will take place in November from 10 to 13th November, and that will be time when this table draft of intergovernmental negotiations will be already in place.
We need to consider whether not at the IGF but on the margins of IGF we could arrange kind of consultation process between other stakeholders with a negotiating team on the substance of the December document.
Again, I'm just outlining this idea for your consideration. We will have a possibility talking it through.
But the advantage as I see it is ability of reaching out a large number of other stakeholders, certainly much larger than if consultations would be arranged in New York at one point in time in second part of 2015.
So we have a lot of things in front of us for today, and Tuesday and Wednesday. I will maybe talk more about the expectations of the MAG meeting tomorrow morning.
And now I would like to invite Ms. Aysel Kandemir, the Chief ICT Expert from Information and Communication Technology Authority of Turkey to take the floor, in the capacity of the outgoing honorary chair of the IGF.
>>AYSEL KANDEMIR: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Esteemed colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, it's a great honor for us to be here at the open consultation and MAG meeting on the preparation of next IGF.
On behalf of chairman of IGF 2014, Dr. Tayfun Acarer, I'm very pleased to present you today's report briefly.
As is known, the 9th IGF happened in Istanbul in September this year. There were over 3,500 participants on-site and remotely from 144 countries. With these figures, this IGF -- this year's IGF noted the highest number of participation in its history. As pre-conference event, as you may have attended, Turkey organized high-level leaders meeting with the topic on capacity-building for economic development.
33 high-level speakers from deputy prime ministers, ministers, chairmen, and CEOs addressed on this important topic.
Inspired by the unique location of Istanbul, overarching theme of IGF was determined as "Connecting Continents for Enhanced Multistakeholder Internet Governance."
People gathered on this theme and discussed the issues from various aspects.
During the preparatory work, MAG held two face-to-face meetings and several online meetings.
More than 200 workshops proposals were submitted by the community. Proposals are examined and rated by MAG based on determined criteria. We all appreciated extensive and excellent work done by the MAG, with the great assistance of IGF secretariat team on the preparation of IGF program.
With the energy of new MAG members, we are sure that MAG will continue to provide their expertise and knowledge for the success of upcoming IGFs.
Through the week of IGF, pioneers, leaders, and prominent experts representing different stakeholder groups came together and exchanged their views and ideas.
Lively debates and the maturity of the discussions drew close attention and interest of participants. With the main sessions, workshops, and other events, important issues were discussed in open and interactive manner.
New setup and format of the sessions contributed to inclusive discussions. Fruitful results and outcomes lead to recommendations and formulation of possible ways forward.
As noted in the chair's report, in this year's IGF there were some innovations. Those are to mention a call by the MAG chair regarding collection of inputs from the community on the action taken by stakeholders as a result of participation to IGF, best practices forum on five challenging issues, and also new format and the content of the IGF summary are new modalities to this year's IGF.
Dear colleagues, I would like to give some of the highlights underlying the chairman's report.
For renewal of IGF mandate with longer cycle, participants prepared statements on the subject for the United Nations. To achieve sustainable funding for IGF, Internet governance support associations formally launched in Istanbul. The input was formulated by the participants on the right to privacy in the digital age for Human Rights Council.
Many participants emphasized that there's a need for increased interaction between the governments and interested stakeholders on trust in cyberspace.
Recommendations were made how and -- how the debate on net neutrality can be taken forward.
To facilitate the connections for the next 5 billion, a call was made for the inclusion of ICTs and Internet access in the post-2015 development agenda of the U.N.
Youth representatives emphasized the need to strengthen existing mechanism and empower youth in the Internet governance ecosystem.
Issues of the IANA transition and enhancing IANA's accountability were discussed on this IGF.
We believe that recommendations made and next steps envisaged needs to be considered carefully for the preparation of next IGF in Brazil.
Having this chance, we wish Brazilian administration great success for a best-ever IGF.
I'm sure that it will be very remarkable event. We'll look forward to be there. Thanks for hosting for the 2015 IGF.
As a final remark, we would like to thank UNDESA and IGF secretariat team and MAG, once again, for their close collaboration and cooperation and support in the organization of the IGF 2014.
Thank you very much for your kind attention.
[ Applause ]
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much, Aysel, for your presentation and certainly for the hospitality that the Turkish government has extended to the IGF, which helped us enormously in succeeding in organizing this meeting.
So -- and also thank you very much for sending the report of the IGF Istanbul meeting to the ITU plenipotentiary conference. I think that that was a very useful move by the Turkish delegation and Turkish government, and certainly that informed the discussion about Internet governance issues at the plenipotentiary conference and certainly contributed to the better visibility of IGF at the plenipotentiary. So thank you very much.
Now let me turn to the 2015 honorary co-chair, the Ambassador Benedicto Fonseca Filho, the Director of the Department of Scientific and Technological Affairs from Ministry of External Relations of Brazil.
>>BENEDICTO FONSECA FILHO: Thank you, Mr. Chair, and let me start by also thanking the previous speaker from Turkey for the kind words and the wish of success for the meeting in Brazil.
We were very happy to be in Turkey and participate in this important meeting, and for us it will be certainly a challenge to stimulate the community to -- for the same level of interest and participation as we had in Turkey. So thank you very much.
It is a great pleasure and an honor for me to serve as co-chair of this preparatory meeting on behalf of Brazil. And by that, I wish to specify that not only on behalf of the Brazilian government but on behalf of the Brazilian steering committee, which is also here represented by the executive secretary, Hartmut Glaser, who is very well known by all of you, and other members, Flavio Wagner and Carlos Alfonso.
We are very happy to be able to contribute to the success of this meeting in Brazil, and will be available, Mr. Chair, to contribute with you and the larger community in order to prepare for a very successful meeting in Brazil.
As we start the preparations, we are very happy to see the level of interest that has already been expressed through the contributions we have received.
We have gone through the contributions and we see there is a lot of good ideas and proposals coming forward.
We look forward to working with all of you to ensure that this meeting will, indeed, close this first cycle of IGF in a very successful way.
Building on the nine years of experience we have had in regard to the previous IGF meetings, building on the innovations that were introduced at the meeting we had last -- this year in Turkey, we see there are many elements that add -- that will contribute, in our thinking, for this.
I would like to highlight the importance of reviving the Best Practice Forum, the dynamic coalitions. At the same time, also some very important developments that have been taking place in different fora, exciting developments such as the ICANN transition, the hosting of NETmundial we were very happy and very proud to host this year.
We feel that this indicates a renewed interest on the part of the community at-large in regard to Internet governance issues, also in regard to what is taking place in other fora, so we see there is very favorable ambiance for -- to strengthen IGF, to reassert the role of IGF in all this framework that is being refined over the last few years, and especially in the last one and a half years.
So again, we'd like to restate our interest and our willingness to work with all of you to ensure we'll have a very successful meeting in Brazil.
I'd like to welcome all of you to Brazil, to Joao Pessoa, next November, and we'll certainly be counting on your energy and your commitment to this process.
[ Applause ]
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Benedicto, for this encouraging statement, so we're very much looking forward to the preparations and to the meeting itself.
So now let us move to the next agenda item that we agreed to examine, and that is stock-taking of IGF 2014 and setting expectations for IGF 2015.
So during this segment, I would encourage you to sort of reflect on what did work, what lessons we would need to bring to the preparatory process of IGF 2015 and maybe also how you see the outline of the Brazil meeting in light of experiences we gathered in Istanbul.
So this is -- since this is the open consultation process, we would be looking to different inputs, and maybe first I would like to invite those who are not MAG members to take the floor, and after that, also MAG members to join the discussion.
Before opening the floor for debate, I would like to invite the secretariat, Chengatai, to maybe briefly introduce the results of the survey which -- I mean, of the comments which were made by delegates during the comment period on this very subject, and after that, I will be looking to the discussion.
Chengetai, please, you have the floor.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you very much, Janis.
Okay. I'll just read a summary of the synthesis paper which summarizes all the contributions that were received.
The purpose of reading it is so that we don't repeat all the comments.
If you hear me say a comment and then in the comment period you could comment on something else that has not been already said.
Starting off with the comments, there were comments on the improvements in the preparatory process that were noted in many contributions, such as seeking inputs from all stakeholders on suggested themes and subthemes prior to the first open consultations, combining the open consultations with the MAG meetings, and also holding regular MAG virtual meetings.
These were all considered to be improvements.
And elements that distinguished IGF 2014 from previous IGFs. The IGF made progress towards becoming more outcome-oriented. The five IGF 2014 best practices forums and the resulting outcome documents represented a good step forward in this regard.
The new format and substance of the chair's summary was also noted as a good development.
Other notable aspects of the meeting were mentioned.
The launch of the IGF support association, the launch of an African declaration on Internet rights and freedoms, and the endorsement of a message that was forwarded to the Human Rights Council on a panel on privacy in the digital age.
For the main sessions, for the positive aspects, the topics of the main sessions and focus sessions were well-chosen and reflected current high-priority issues.
Comments also praised the "U" table format, with more moderators standing and moving between the panelists and attendees, which was heralded as an improvement for more interactive sessions.
Critics, they say that some of the sessions had too many panelists and they suggested keeping the sessions and durations below two hours.
There were some three-hour discussions, and this was said to be too long, and if there were a three-hour session, it should be split into two.
For workshops, some contributors commented that there were too many workshops held in parallel and some of the workshops addressed similar topics so they said that the workshop streams should be reduced. Last year we had 11 workshop streams.
The schedule online tool that was used in IGF 2014 for the -- the schedule was seen as an improvement.
Appreciation was expressed for the timely availability of session transcripts and video recordings on the IGF Web site, as well as for the multiple ways to remotely participate through the WebEx, Twitter, Webcasts, and YouTube.
Aspects that could be improved was the room naming, the signage within the venue, WiFi access, interpretation for more sessions, and less speeches, more interactive debates.
As suggestions and recommendations regarding IGF 2015, including the preparatory process and intersessional work, the recommendations were made for the MAG and the IGF community to actively engage in intersessional work, which is seen as critical to continuing the discussion and debate on key issues.
Two themes were proposed for intersessional work: Policy, menus for connecting the next billion, and impact of Internet on jobs and skills.
For themes and issues, one input recommended that the IGF community should agree on two to three high-level themes and should try to work throughout the year towards the production of common best practices or policy messages.
The IGF should address policy questions that are controversial and/or time-critical, and that are currently lacking any other multistakeholder mechanism for global coordination.
An input noted that it was timely and relevant for the IGF to explore themes at the intersection of ICT and development with an Internet governance focus. One proposal for the overall themes of the 2015 IGF meeting was Internet governance for sustainable development and promotion of human rights.
Other inputs suggested surveillance, cybersecurity, online privacy, and primary themes of the 2015 meeting.
Workshops -- one recommendation was made to encourage organizers to -- of successful workshops to submit follow-up proposals for the following IGF.
For the agenda, some inputs noted that the IGF could benefit from a more structured agenda with eventually fewer workshops. An opposing view was also expressed, noting that the number of workshops should not be reduced, as the dynamism of the IGF comes from workshops.
There was also comment noting that an alternative -- as an alternative to the usual IGF schedule would be to have each day of the IGF focused on a specific issue, with various sessions in various formats.
As far as the dynamic coalitions were concerned, there was a recommendation that was made for a more structured process to develop -- to be developed for dynamic coalitions. Further discussions should be held on whether and how the 12 dynamic coalitions that are currently active within the IGF should contribute to or support the IGF's intersessional work.
On more tangible outcomes, whilst still maintaining the key characteristic of being an open platform for discussion, the IGF should continue to develop more tangible outcomes. One recommendation was made to develop innovative ways to capture the conversations that occur at the IGF and share them globally, wherever possible.
The 10th IGF could take a step forward in this direction if it were to practically use designated main sessions, workshops, and other sessions or working groups to develop nonbinding opinions, recommendations, or policy principles that stakeholders could use to address currently pressing Internet-related issues.
On linkages with other IGF entities, contributors noted that the IGF should establish better coordination across the intergovernance platforms and initiatives, strengthen its ties with regional and national IGF initiatives. And the IGF should ensure that there are regular exchanges with various intergovernance foras, meetings, and initiatives throughout the year.
On remote participation, increasing remote participation, eParticipation at the annual IGF, and during intersessional work were stressed by many stakeholders. Dedicated working groups and additional funding should be sourced to address this important issue.
Other suggestions were a more developed dynamic landing page on the IGF Web site for all aspects related to remote participation and remote participation guidelines for participants.
Remote moderators should also be empowered to insist that remote participation and interventions should be considered.
On the youth, several inputs noted that more youths should be represented as speakers and organization -- organizers of sessions.
Logistics, improvements were encouraged in the following areas: Media operations, badging, beverages, food and drinks, broadband, and WiFi connections, host country Web site printing, et cetera.
And there was also a contribution that professional event organizers should be also engaged.
General suggestions for the MAG, it was suggested that the MAG could establish a series of working groups dedicated to critical issues such as communications, outreach, intersessional work, best practice forums, et cetera. The MAG should continue to organize working groups in specific areas, provide organizational leadership for them, and open them to those willing to participate and contribute to the process.
I think that's all for the summary and for the IGF mandate, but that's not for the meeting. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: It's not necessary, ladies and gentlemen. We are now already entering our working tempo. And I would like to underline that we have simultaneous interpretation in the six United Nations languages. So anybody wishing to speak in any other language than English is welcome to do so. We have Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Arabic or French, not any other language.
And now I would like to open the floor for comments. Any participant -- consultation process?
While you're thinking, please before taking the floor, introduce yourself. That is for the sake of -- also for the sake of transcription. And I see the first request. Please, Victoria.
>> VIRGINIA PAQUE: Thank you. Actually, I'm not Victoria. I'm Virginia. I'm in good company anyway.
I am a new MAG member. Ginger or Virginia Paque from Latin America via Venezuela and the U.S. and DiploFoundation which is global.
And my major link here, my major prominence or my major worry, concern is that online participation, whether it be remote or local because I'm not sure who is local and who is remote right now, is that, first of all, participation online takes place 365 days a year. Remote participation is way more important than we give it credit for because most of our participation of everyone even that is in this room is online. So I think we need to make sure that we design the sessions and that in our criteria for the workshops and all the sessions, we make sure that we're including the people who are not in the room and that not just -- starting with the idea of secretariat, that the organization of the meeting, then the organization of each session and each workshop take into account how -- and this has already been done, but theoretically more than in practical application. So that we actually include in full participation, not just observation and that dynamic movement that we're trying to generate within the room, include the people that are in the rest of the world who are actually the majority.
So I would like to be very active in pushing this, and that includes, of course, any accessibility issues for people with disabilities because that works very well to get together.
So I would ask that we please take that into account right from the very beginning which, of course, is now and that any suggestions -- and I'm willing to put my energy behind my words. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you very much, Virginia. This is what I want to say, but I didn't find quickly enough your name on my list.
So please, further requests? Who is willing -- can we move to the next agenda item? We're satisfied with the review which was done and conclusions that were outlined by Chengetai? Virat?
>>VIRAT BHATIA: Thank you, Chair. Good morning, everybody. I was waiting to make sure that the observers and the new MAG members first had an opportunity before putting up our flags. I think there will be other colleagues who will want to join in on the session.
Firstly, our huge thanks goes out to Turkey and the government. We didn't have enough time in the last MAG meeting on the last day at the IGF to pay our tributes to the outstanding work that has been done in Istanbul.
Just for the record, 1600 delegates from 128 countries participating in Baku, Azerbaijan, that went up to over 2,000 at the very excellent IGF organized by the Indonesian government in Bali. And in 2014, broke all previous records by clocking 3,694 participants of which 2,403 were onsite.
They represented 144 countries, which is nearly 75% of the U.N. membership. This is an all-time record for IGF. So a huge achievement and big thanks to the secretariat as well as the government. My numbers may be off by a little, but I think that's what came through.
The developing countries constituted nearly 60% of all participants. That's a big vote of confidence by developing countries, something we need to make inclusive.
Civil society were the largest participants with nearly 779 participants. And contrary to the popular belief, the government is not very active. There were -- actually 23% of all participants onsite were government, only third -- very close to the business community in terms of numbers.
There were several innovations that have been spoken about, so I won't get into all of those. But I think a few deserve a mention, especially on the main sessions where the chair had -- actually everybody agreed to only have 2 1/2 main sessions as compared to five or six main sessions. And the subjects that were chosen were carefully picked. But more importantly, I think when the NETmundial conference was held in April, in spite of the fact the decision had been made to hold only 2 1/2. For some of us who are new here, there are six slots available for main sessions, if you look at the four days, counting out closing and opening ceremonies. So we started with 2 1/2, went up to 3 1/2 and after the May Paris conference, a third slot was opened up and a three-hour session on net neutrality was held which was a prominent outcome piece that was stated in the NETmundial statement.
So it showed that there was flexibility in the IGF process to actually take on board important and contemptual issues. It was after many IGFs that almost all the main sections had full halls. They were between 80 to 90% attendance. So I know there was a comment about not keeping it for three hours, but nobody left the room. That's the other side of equation.
And many of the main sessions were actually broken into two parts. And so that worked really well. People were out to do exercises and stuff like that, so that was kind of interesting.
There was also the issue of turning the lens on IGF itself. There was a full main session on the Internet governance itself and its future and how it's been doing. And there was a frank and formidable discussion with some governments sort of giving us very candid feedback on what they thought was working and what's not working. So it wasn't as if the IGF or the MAG was playing softball for themselves.
You've spoken about the open, transparent process that was adopted. There was also an improvement in the regional and the gender representation in almost all panels. We compared this to the previous ones, and I think Istanbul saw not only high participation but also high participation from regional developing country governments, most of whom who served on the main sessions, much help by the U-table format that was played out.
Much has been spoken about the best practice sessions, so I won't go there.
On the workshops, I think the preannounced criteria which improved in many ways by giving higher points for first-time submissions, for developing country submissions and for specific policy questions.
To sort of step back to the main session again, I think the point about picking policy issues through a public consultation and then including them through the moderators was a major improvement. In fact, our session, the one that I was co-leading with 16 of my very able volunteers and friends from the MAG had a Facebook page for a month which invited comments. And then that went into the discussions. So the online engagement that has been commented upon was actually an improvement.
We have to say the location of Istanbul made the cost of participation for participants, that was a big factor. Five-hour flights from Asia and Europe but also the range of accommodations and the location. It's really helped bring people in. I think we need to sort of give some thought to how when the location is right, you can get so many more people to participate, especially from developing countries. This major spike in the numbers is basically attributable to the host country's finding a location that had hotels from five stars to three stars to guest houses, everything almost within walking distances.
I also want to give some thought to the improved IGF Web site and the color coding of programs that I think went really well with several people. We didn't have time to explain the use of that, but I think the innovation that was formulated there was very useful. The secretariat took this great initiative to change what was happening in the past. A very substantive session by the youth which was held in the main room. I wish more of our colleagues had attended that. I think three of us on the MAG supported that session. It went exceedingly well. We are really proud to see one of the members here. She was the moderator of that session, and now she's here as a full-time MAG member and we welcome her with open arms. That's an outstanding development for the MAG. I don't think we have had a youth representative before on the MAG, and that's sort of a reflection.
There was an enhanced use of remote participation, also use of social media. I think IGF 2014 saw 1,297 remote participants. There was an increased participation due to platforms such as Flickr, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr. And as I said, there was Facebook sessions organized.
I just wanted to close this by saying that the MAG last year embraced a lot of -- well, I think starting 2013 when they started embracing issues such as surveillance and a big session was held, we should remember that 45 of the 90 workshops were directly or indirectly related to human rights which was a big part of the workshops and, again, a mandate that the MAG and the IGF took on from the NETmundial outcome statement as well. As a special main session that had not been planned in February but came in after May, after the April conference. So I just wanted to leave all those thoughts for our new MAG members and also observers to think about. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Virat, for your comments. Izumi.
>> IZUMI AIZU: Izumi Aizu from Tokyo. I'm the outgoing or retired MAG member. I just came here to say good-bye, guys.
[ Laughter ]
But that's too short to say for a three-day meeting.
To follow what Virat said, I would like to share some of my observations of 2014 in Istanbul, especially we have done some ad hoc interviews during the IGF meetings. And it was very rewarding or helpful for a MAG member to understand how the participants of the IGF really feel in taking things back home or not. And I would really encourage you guys, the new MAG members, to do something similar, not only just organizing the conference per se but at the same time listen to -- especially the newbies, the new participants, not only in the orientation sessions, although I'd do that, during lunchtime or coffee break, also from those from developing countries, those who are not really exposed to the IGF podium so far.
So here are two things I would say. Well -- although we did only a few, about ten myself. But many said they feel very much isolated unless they are the speaker or the organizer of the session. You may think, well, there are many people frustrated with the lack of interaction time because there are too many speakers, et cetera, et cetera.
But I think we need to really consider more about some of the new ways of organizing conferences these days, there are certain ways like unconference, BOF, or open space. That's one modality. Or you may have heard of a flipped classroom.
One sort of the leaders of this field suggested to me -- he was the first-time participant to IGF Bali, he prepared all the presentations of his session in video in advance and let the audience or participants watch it before they come to Istanbul so it is ready for them to go into the direct interaction. So there are a number sort of innovative ways that we could really try out more for the new meetings of IGF.
I also again just want to repeat that MAG members listen, don't really only to speak to the many, many people at IGF. That's very valuable.
Last, but perhaps not least, just to pick up with (saying name) just said, we know the value of the remote participation but also the limitation of and beginning with the term "remote." It sounds like we are the center and they are the periphery and they are remote. They also feel very remote from the center when they participate during the night for their time zone. They need to stay very concentrated if you try that.
How much you get for intervention? Not that much. So most chairs say, oh, are there any remote participants after all the major points are covered or when you find opportunity in the room to take the floor. So perhaps we could use the technology of the Internet and the latest ones. The NETmundial did a good job of showing the videos from Indonesia or India so you feel much more intimate and much more kind of throughout the globe. So these are some thoughts I felt I would like to share from the outgoing member of MAG. Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much, Izumi, for your thoughts and proposals.
Now I will turn to Ms. Shita Laksmi.
>>SHITA LAKSMI: Okay. Hello. My name is Shita Laksmi. I'm a new MAG member from Indonesia.
I think one of the suggestions that I would like to see in the IGF 2015, learning from 2014, is that since IGF is a very new discussion in Indonesia, in particular, or in Southeast Asian region, I would like to ask whether the MAG member -- or when we do the proposals review, we can make an affirmative actions so assure a percentage goes to developing countries that they are able to be part of the IGF discussions because IGF just started being a discussion in Indonesia, in particular, and we are trying to have more tangible outcomes out of it. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Shita.
The answer to your question is affirmative. Yes, we -- in preparing Istanbul IGF, we did a little bit of positive discrimination and we brought proposals from the developing countries who were lower graded than maybe others to the agenda simply to give the preference to representatives from the developing countries.
So now the next on my list is Marilyn. Marilyn Cade.
>>MARILYN CADE: Thank you, Chair.
I'm going to open my comments by saying how exciting it is to see all the participants who are here. Not just the MAG members, but broader representation from the community, and to repeat a comment that I made last year to rounding laughter when I announced that I was a new MAG member and that I had been a very active participant for eight years before becoming a MAG member last year.
So my comment to Izumi and all other MAG members who are rotating back into the community is that, in fact, you must not leave us but you must continue to attend the planning sessions and to contribute your expertise.
The MAG has a narrow function and we are very dependent on the broad participation of all of the stakeholders, and Izumi, you and others who have been so active as MAG members in the past, have really helped to bring us to where we are today. So I just want to offer that comment to those who may be thinking that they are rotating out of the MAG. I think we, in fact, think we still own you.
That was not the entire purpose of my taking the floor, though.
I want to make a comment about an innovation that we introduced last year that I was perhaps very committed to and able to contribute to and found it to be a very beneficial contribution, and that was a shift away from the role of the MAG as central in the planning of workshops and even the introducing of workshops and really limiting the role of the MAG in workshops, not -- MAG members no longer as individual MAG members propose workshops. We evaluate the workshops. We coach. We mentor. We do plan the main sessions. That has been really a big change, and I think it also has done something that's vitally important.
Since we are committed to bring in new players and new contributors, we as MAG members have the opportunity to play the role of coach and mentor to help to facilitate bringing in lots of new voices, and I'm very pleased to hear some of the suggestions that Izumi, for instance, and others have made about new formats because I think opening our minds to new formats also will enhance the opportunity for broadening participation.
I too want to support the perspective shared by Virat Bhatia about the location of Istanbul really did provide the opportunity for all of us, regardless of what stakeholder group we were in, to, I think, put more encouragement into the opportunity to attend because of the accessibility of the location.
Finally, I want to make a comment about one of the benefits that I have seen of the attitude and openness of the secretariat to including other groups who want to come to the IGF and perhaps hold a side event in parallel, but then integrate their participants into the IGF, has helped tremendously in bringing in some new voices. And I will just give as an example a couple of groups that I've had the benefit of collaborating with. That is WAVE, the Women's Alliance on Virtual Engagement, and also the Arab Business Internet Alliance that brought a number of attendees to Istanbul held a parallel meeting, but then integrated their attendees.
So 30 to 50 new attendees at the IGF who were -- might not have been able to come to the IGF if they had not been able to have that parallel meeting as well.
They were able to participate in the village, and that also elevated their access to others from the community at IGF who came into the IGF and met with them.
So I want to continue to encourage that openness of attitude that we have brought of if there's a room available and groups come and legitimately are interested, that there's a way for them to take advantage of being in the space with us.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Marilyn.
And next on the list is Avri. Avri Doria, please.
>>AVRI DORIA: Thank you. Avri Doria speaking. I am a new MAG member.
I wanted to talk about two concepts that I think we need to work on.
One is the whole notion of audience.
At last -- in fact, at every MAG meeting and at many meetings I go to, we talk about panelists and we talk about audience, and I think that that is a problematic concept when it comes to a forum.
When it comes to a forum, I think we should be really working hard at the notion of everyone being a participant. Some happen to be up on the dais and some happen to be down on the floor at a particular point in time, but I think that when we have this concept in mind of "audience," we tend to sort of have a separation and we end up with a row of talking heads talking at these people who are sitting and listening as an audience should.
And I think that from the very beginning, we really need to be casting what we do in terms of how do we build a forum type of behavior where there is a very dynamic conversation, dialogue -- well, "dialogue" is between two, but a conversation and discussion among the many participants in a room and also those that are attending remotely.
It was the reference to remote being remote that reminded me of that.
The other one has to do with the notion of intersessional work.
I'm very happy that we're starting to do work between the two meetings, but when we think of intersessional, we're sort of thinking that the work is bounded by the meetings, as opposed to the meetings being a point in the progressive and steady state of the work where you sort of coordinate the expression of that work, you make it wider, you have a goal that you drive to.
But again, if it's intersessional, we still have the meetings as the main marker, as the main milestone, as opposed to the work and reaching the outcomes.
So I'd just like to sort of suggest that as we move forward, when we come to these concepts, we try to also look at the obverse of the concept and try to basically not have audiences and not see the yearly meetings as anything more than an annealing point where the work comes up, comes forward, some of it gets brought -- taken to other places and some of it then continues.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Avri, for your thoughts.
Now I see we have online participants willing to speak.
>>REMOTE INTERVENTION: Yes. We have an online intervention from Anriette, who will speak for herself.
Anriette, I'm giving you the floor now.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Okay. Seems to have a slight technical difficulty. We will come back to Anriette and I'm going now to the next speaker. ISOC?
>>CONSTANCE BOMMELAER: Thank you, Chair, and good morning, everyone. I'm Constance Bommelaer, from the Internet Society, the technical -- who is part of the Internet technical community.
I won't reiterate some of the points that were made this morning, but I would support what Avri just said about the intersessional work and also other points made by Marilyn and Virat this morning.
I'd like to focus on the outputs or the outcomes of the IGF and just say a few words about the experience of the best practices and a few thoughts on possible new outputs for the IGF.
With regards to the best practices forums, I think it was a good first step for the IGF, definitely.
I'd like to emphasize a few things that were not said in the summary of the taking stock synthesis paper and highlight, first of all, that new individuals and new communities have come to the IGF through the best practices.
On the mailing list, we have about 100 to 120 people, people who do not go to the IGF normally, who will probably not go in the future, but who have an interest in the work that was kick-started through the best practices.
From here, the question is: How do we sustain that community? How do we make sure we retain these individuals, these experts in the IGF community, and actually get them involved in future editions of the IGF?
I think throughout my comments, you'll see that it systematically boils down, of course, to the resources of the secretariat, but it also shows that we have tremendous opportunities for the IGF today.
I would also emphasize that through the best practices, we did not negotiate text, and I think that's an important point, because there are some sensitivities about finding the right balance for IGF's outputs.
We want to make progress on difficult issues, but at the same time we want to keep the -- the nonbinding nature of the IGF and we don't want the forum to become a negotiation platform.
We talked about the means, the resources needed to support intersessional work.
I think this also raises the question of the role of MAG members versus secretariat versus external consultants or help that can come in support to the secretariat.
Here, I would like to say that I think that the MAG -- as Marilyn said, MAG members have a very specific role but at the same time we cannot substitute ourselves to the secretariat, and as the IGF strives to develop more outcomes in the future, I think this barrier between the role of the secretariat and MAG members will be extremely important because we want any outputs, any outcomes, to be perceived as neutral.
Allow me also to add that with regards to format of outcomes, we've talked about the best practices.
There were also some good policy messages coming out of IGF 2014, a message that was sent on behalf of one of the groups to the Human Rights Council. I think that was the demonstration that the IGF has a lot of potential to offer in this regard.
At the same time, it seems that some themes lend themselves to best practices, themes that have been around for a while where we have documentation, existing practices, that can be compared. Other themes would perhaps be more suitable for policy messages through main sessions or other mechanisms, but emerging issues such as ethical data handling or other new issues might be more suitable for other types of formats.
Finally, and just to conclude, with regards to the main sessions, IGF -- in my view, IGF 2014 really gave the impression that we had a hybrid format. We had introduced a few new elements, and at the same time we had preserved elements from the historical IGF format.
I think it's important to see the historical elements that need to be maintained as we develop and take the IGF forward.
At the same time, we also heard that many participants felt that main sessions were too long, there were too many main sessions, and I liked the idea that was expressed, I think, by -- maybe it was Chengetai that presented it as part of the synthesis paper -- of having maybe one theme per day and only one main session at the end of the theme to conclude the work and ensure we have progress throughout the day towards some sort of outputs that would be reflected through the main session.
Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Constance, for your proposals.
Now I'm going to United Kingdom. Mark? Mark Carvell?
>>MARK CARVELL: Yes. Thank you, Chair, and good morning, everybody. Mark Carvell, United Kingdom Government, Department for Culture, Media, and Sport. First of all, I'd like to express on behalf of the U.K. government our deep appreciation to Turkey for hosting such a successful 9th IGF and achieving such record levels of participation. That's a great achievement, and as you said, Chair, it's very timely as we engage in, at the wider U.N. level, scrutiny of the IGF, that we ensure that the IGF continues to build on success and evolve as it has done in such demonstrable way.
And Virat earlier on recounted the breakdowns of stakeholder participation, and just a footnote with regard to government participation.
The U.K. government delegation, in Istanbul, was the largest ever. We had more policymakers from across our administration attending in person than ever before, and I think that is a reflection of the strength of the -- of the program, the importance of participation and engaging with other stakeholders in such an open and dynamic way.
With regard to other aspects of the Istanbul IGF, we very much appreciated the innovations introduced there, the sense of capturing more concrete outcomes, but in a way that as has just been said, not -- not to try and negotiate these things, but to see where there was consensus or a variety of opinions that can help our understanding of the issues.
So that's -- that's a very important conceptual sense for the IGF that we should continue to hold dearly.
Secondly, the best practice forums, very, very effective, very good, and I think it was just the right number of forums, and indeed, the dissemination of the results of those is an important thing that we should ensure is taken full regard and that has already been noted as well. You know, sort of taking forward of the outcomes of so many experts coming together in the best practice forum that is truly global.
New formats? Yes. Very welcome.
And the commitment to developing intersessional tracks of work, we very much support that, and we look forward to the discussions here at this meeting about how we implement those so that we can ensure the work between now and the Brazilian IGF really does help secure effective moving forward of issues by the time of the Brazilian IGF so that the Brazilian IGF then will be able to take them further even more without risk of going over the same ground that's been looked at before at previous IGFs and without the risk of duplication. So that's a very important development of this IGF that was instituted in Istanbul, the commitment to intersessional activities.
Just a few final points. Very much appreciate the engaging and commitment of those youth participants in Istanbul and we support elevating their participation into center-stage activities of the IGF in Brazil. To give them more visibility and help refresh our understanding of issues and what is of importance to young people.
Main sessions. I think the number was about right in Istanbul, but still we have to work a bit harder to ensure that they maximize participation, that we avoid clashes with other program activities, give the main sessions enough space. And we should also look at the number of panelists. I do sympathize with the view that for some of the main sessions, there were too many panelists. Those are my comments for now. I hope they are helpful.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Mark. Very helpful. I understand remote participation is not yet ready. Or we can try.
>> We would like to try it now. Otherwise, we will fix it after the first coffee. If Anriette and then we also have a second one that has been in queue with Subi.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Let's see if we can get Anriette.
>> Anriette, if you are ready. I will give you the floor right now. Thank you.
>>ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: I don't think the mic is working. Can you read my comments?
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Anriette, we can hear you. You can go ahead.
>>ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Should I go ahead? Okay. Now I need to find my comments again.
[ Laughter ]
Let me just get them back. Okay.
Well, as Izumi as an outgoing MAG member, I would like to thank everyone. It is good to be here. I plan to continue.
I noted Marilyn Cade's comments about outgoing MAG members being owned by the MAG.
And, Marilyn, I look forward to the challenge of being owned by you in particular.
So just some remarks. Thank you to the host country, and thanks to everyone. I think the IGF was a success, even though we want to improve it. So just a few key points to add to the Secretariat's excellent synthesis.
I agree that we should strengthen the intersessional process of the IGF, and this has been said by Avri and others. In particular, I think it can help with the outcome orientation through the best practice forums, which I see as part of the intersessional process.
It can also help with workshop preparation. I think if we have more workshops that are prepared intersessionally, we will have stronger workshops. It can also help with developing country government participation. If there are intersessional events that involve them, which are then synthesized or brought up to some process at the global IGF.
I think it can also include or succeed in better inclusion of regional IGFs. One of the criticisms of this year's IGF was that some of the regional IGFs were not adequately reflected and did not consist of remote participation.
Secondly, on human rights, as Virat pointed out, there's an (indiscernible) of interest of this topic. And it is a complex topic that has (inaudible).
And I really do think we need either a main session at the IGF and to synthesize discussion on human rights-related topics or a roundtable as we did this year. And the roundtable was very successful, so I thank the Secretariat and the MAG for allowing us to include that. But it still clashed with rights-related workshops. It wasn't able to synthesize everything.
Thirdly, then I think on event design, I agree with Izumi, I think we need to be innovative, not to employ external facilitators but just to make sure we design the event in such a way that the workshops compliment one another, that workshops on one theme that address different facets of that theme are not run in parallel, that workshops are well coded and maybe the device of a theme a day is one way of doing it and having some form of synthesis. But I think some professional design support can help. Also to address the issue of participation that Avri brought up.
And then my last point is just to note that we had in Istanbul the ungovernance forum, and it was a successful device for bringing in more local voices. And it complimented the IGF, so I think it is good. But I also think the MAG should guard against such parallel events and preventing the Internet governance community for raising critical issues inside the main IGF. So, yes, a parallel event is fine, but we shouldn't avoid addressing challenging issues inside the main event.
And that's it for now. I will be with you for the rest of the day and look forward to the rest of the meeting.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Anriette, for your contribution. I will take now next onsite participant before going to next online participant.
So next on my list is Cheryl.
>>CHERYL MILLER: Now? Sorry about that. Thank you very much. My name is Cheryl Miller. And I'm a new MAG member this year from the business community. I work for Verizon Communications. And I just wanted to thank you all. I actually participated in the meetings last year, and everyone on the MAG was so welcoming and so it was a really great environment to come into. And so I'm much appreciative for that and to the secretariat as well.
I have two comments and then a quick question. One observation that I had, I guess, as an outsider through last year's process was how balanced the relationship was between the host country and the MAG. And I understand that there are different responsibilities that you both have. And so I guess another thank you and another compliment to the host country for really kind of creating that synergy with the MAG. I think it definitely helped 2014 IGF, added to that success that was there.
Another comment that I had, I guess I'm hearing from a lot of MAG members some good things about the main sessions and some things that perhaps didn't exactly go the way they would have hoped for. So I note that many have said that there was good balance in terms of gender balance, regional diversity, and so that was definitely a plus.
But on the other side, there were too many speakers on some panels. And I definitely noted that as well. This is where my question comes in. I'm just curious as a new member whether or not there was a specific rule that was put in place to kind of encourage the enhanced balance or what the structure was. I don't know if any of the folks who were a part of organizing the main sessions have any comments or thoughts on why it turned out that way since so many people seem to indicate that they didn't want so many people in terms of number of participants. But it seems we got the balance right on the other end. And so thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Cheryl. I will let fellow colleagues to clarify that question. I think that there's one very important guiding principle. We should be guided by common sense whatever we do. And if we will apply that, I think we are on very safe ground.
Now I'm going to online participant that I understand is Subi. Please.
Please go ahead, Subi.
>>SUBI CHATURVEDI: Hi, Janis. Can you hear me?
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Yes, we can hear you.
>>SUBI CHATURVEDI: It is really exciting and thrilling. Everyone, my name is Subi Chaturvedi. And I come from India. And I now teach at the State University with about 800 engineers. This is my third year on the MAG, and each year is equally thrilling and exciting.
Janis, thank you for your excellent leadership. And what we have this year in the MAG is a phenomenal team with such an amazing skill set.
So some quick points on what I think worked and what we can retain in essence. I think the engagement between the host country, Turkey, and the (indiscernible) handedness and the fact that they were so facilitative has been amazing. It's beautiful in terms of how translated. We had excellent chairs for main sessions.
Our session in particular looked at IGF Internet ecosystem and the role of IGF and how is it that we can strengthen the IGF.
Perhaps some of the things that have been raised, we could respond to that as well because as main sessions, it is important to speak to a lot of essential questions and formats. We can't have a blanket approach to all sessions, whether they're main sessions or workshops. So I think that sensitivity to the issue and to the format is something that we retain going forward.
What was a particular delight to me was a 13-year-old, not quite 14, as one of the closing speakers. I thank the secretariat and the Chair for this innovation. I think that sends a very positive message. This is both about nimbleness, innovation, and the ability to listen and respond from the floor. And that is the essence of the IGF.
I welcome the fact that we do not spend about 75% of our time on negotiated outcome documents because the ability to bring people and create a safe space is what I'd like to see cherished going forward this year on the 10th edition. We have already been through the numbers, and it is enthusiastically reaffirmed by the greater presence of people to travel and engage.
On the remote participation, yes, I think it's a very important tool and shouldn't be like watching television. So people participating through remote and being recognized prominently. There's a remote moderator being positioned in a room prominently. And consistently reaffirming the fact that those who are not in the room are part of the conversation is something that is fantastic, and we need to keep working on that.
The substantive Chair's report I thought was, again, a highlight, two pages, four pages. And then a phenomenal extensive report that came out as the Chair's summary of taking that concept forward worked fantastically for me.
I completely agree that according to the Tunis Agenda in paragraph 72, one of our key tasks as MAG is also not just organizing the program but also enriching the knowledge agenda and contributing to capacity-building.
Outgoing colleagues like Vlada and some of the others have done very good work. These are standards that have been set. We have to continue working at that, and best practice forums were truly a translation of that.
Meeting a lot of people from developing countries, being one myself, I think those are themes where we're enriching in terms of good practices. They might not be the best. They might not be immediately relevant or completely fit every ethos. But these are raised in which the IGF has contributed, and you have given things to people that they actually take away.
Coming back to the main sessions, also something that worked with the deeper format and the fact that some of the main sessions were able to make the moderator stand up and walk the room. That goes back to Avri's point of not treating people who are in the room as an audience but also integrating them while the session is on, not keeping a question and answer format at the end of when the speakers have spoken. But looking at it from -- looking at it from the perspective of keeping that engagement alive and vibrant while the session is on.
What I also would like to see, I don't know if somebody has already spoken to that, is more volunteers so that MAG members are not running around in these sessions. What was also amazing is the fact the secretariat managed to give one of the youth workshops and put them in the main session.
So I welcome especially the three young members on the MAG. There is a lot that we have to learn from them. That workshop was one of the best workshops that I attended last year. So in terms of a resource pool and seeing more of them on main sessions as panelists, these are things that people who represent net mission and young colleagues on the MAG are already working in terms of initiatives.
Intersessional work is very welcomed. But what I would also like to see more reflection on is the parameters, how is it that we will decide on themes and where is it that we would go from there. So that framework I understand will evolve organically, will be taken offline through virtual concepts.
This year as well there was excellent support for remote moderation. The number of microphones in the room for audience engagement matter. They matter hugely. If you are in a workshop and you just have a microphone up front and people are already speaking, it's difficult. If you have a roving microphone and more volunteers around in the room, I know that has a cost input but that's something that actually works.
What one would also like to see is a venue which is also contained, something which is easily accessible because accessibility and giving priority to people with disabilities is something that one really wants to see.
So in terms of -- I mean, going forward, three key points: More women, more youth, more children. Also more governments in speaking roles. A venue which is not too difficult or too expensive to be present at. The insistence of having more young people and more new people on main sessions and main panels. And more guidelines and clarity on mergers and feedback for the suggested proposals or proposals that didn't make the cut.
So these are some things along with a very specific interest which is taken in a multistakeholder format while we're planning the session from the host country, particularly civil society groups that are part of the process from the initial days of planning. That's about it for now.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Okay, thank you.
>>SUBI CHATURVEDI: I will stay online.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Subi, for your input and clarity that needs to be taken into account going forward.
So next on the list is delegation of United States.
>>UNITED STATES: Good morning, everyone, and thank you, Chair. Thank you, Janis. Welcome to everybody. I want to join -- my name is Liesyl Franz. I'm with the U.S. Department of State. And here along with my colleagues I want to join everyone in thanking the government of Turkey for hosting such a successful and vibrant IGF this year and also extend our thanks to Brazil for, once again, hosting as we look forward to the next IGF 10 in 2015.
We also want to thank Mexico for their kind offer to host in 2016.
Thank you, too, for the ability to put in a submission for the call for input, and we certainly did that. So I won't belabor our submission now, but I did want to highlight just three things that we mentioned that might be useful for discussions. One of the things that we have always appreciated is the nimbleness of the IGF in being able to have timely discussions about whatever is going on in the Internet space because it moves so quickly and is so dynamic; that as we look to workshops -- that either themes or workshops that we might encounter, leaving space for whatever the issues of the day are has been something that has been very useful.
Secondly, as we look to capturing the output and capturing the conversation, the best practice forums and other inputs and outputs that have come out from the IGF have been very useful to continue the conversation and appreciated the comments made earlier that the spirit in which the best practice forums outputs were done were collaborative and not negotiated outcomes.
I'd like to join my others in congratulating the new MAG members to this year's IGF planning process, and one of the things that we highlight in our submission has been addressed today as well is to encourage you to continue to look at the community -- not just old MAG members but those that have been coming to the IGF for years and those that have just started to come, to continue to look to incorporating the community into the planning effort, as well as capturing outputs that might be useful for going forward.
You know, we really believe that the IGF provides a space free from the pressure of formal decision-making and negotiations where all stakeholders can communicate and understand each other's perspectives and thereby develop more collaborative relationships that then help reduce misunderstandings across them when we engage in other venues and I think that is why the interactive nature that so many others have talked about of the workshops and the discussions that take place at the IGF is so important.
And so as we look forward -- as we look to developing workshop criteria or workshop formats, that that interactive nature is really something that is emphasized.
Also, I'd like to join others and pick up on your comment, chair, that we are looking toward the extension of the mandate for the IGF next year, and the United States believes that as we do that, we must look at it as retaining the nature of its original mandate, even as it continues to evolve and improve to meet the community's needs in the discussion and the dialogue that is so -- that is really its value.
So thank you. I look forward to the discussions over the next couple days, and good morning.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much, Liesyl, for your comments, and now I am turning to Ms. Kee.
I'm sorry, I'm not sure that I can pronounce your first name right. If you could just introduce yourself for the future reference, as I say.
>>JAC SM KEE: Thank you.
Hi. My name is Jac, Jac sm Kee, and I'm with civil society, APC and I generally work on women's rights issues.
I wanted to give a couple of comments.
One was around the capacity-building track. I think that is a very, very important and useful priority area for IGF to be improving on because that also directly supports kind of more diverse participation of different groups of people, and for me especially, I'm more -- I'm very interested to see how this can promote active participation and not kind of like audience, as Avri was talking about, of women's rights groups as well, and also speaks to the -- to the recommendation for different modalities and how we can look at this in much more creative ways to think about active learning processes.
Because I think this is really quite critical, especially for trying to encourage new and different actors to come into the space, and I think national and regional IGFs can also play a role in terms of building capacities of national and regional actors from different stakeholder groups, and I especially welcome to see how this can directly also feed into the kind of global IGF processes and vice versa in terms of sharing of learnings.
And perhaps this could be even a best practice thematic area.
And the other thing I wanted to talk about was also to support the whole focus around intersessional work and to also look at capacity building as one of the key areas of work for intersessional work.
And also the colleague from ISOC, the speaker from ISOC, was talking about how best practices forum is actually in a way also facilitating greater participation of more diverse actors into the process of IGF without actually being present at the IGF itself as an event, so I think that that is something that is really worth exploring more into, to really look at how these particular thematic and topical areas can really also facilitate more discussions by, I guess, unusual suspects into Internet governance and policy areas. Especially with the greater interest around -- demonstrated around human rights issues and how IGF has really demonstrated a kind of maturity around human rights issues and will translate into looking at human rights, I guess, in more depth.
So things like disability issues might come up, sexuality, gender, and so on.
So I think that is also a -- something to take into consideration.
And finally, the report card. We've been working on the gender report card for three years already and, really, thanks to the collaboration and support by the secretariat to also make sure that this is part of the formal reporting process, and it's been incredibly helpful to see in the past three years how the report card has helped us to have a sense of to what extent gender has been incorporated and included into the workshops, but somehow the report card findings are not included in the formal reporting for the statistics of IGF itself and maybe there needs to be a bit more of a stronger connection there, and to see how we can also improve the report card to not just look at numbers but also to look at the extent of the substance of the content and how numbers in participation -- whether that translates into inclusion of the issue. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much for your observations.
Before going to Turkey, I will ask an online participant to take the floor.
>>REMOTE INTERVENTION: I have -- I will be reading an intervention from Brazil, from Marilia Maciel of the Fundacion Gergulio Vargas.
Marilia says, "Best practices forums were a valuable exercise that produced interesting documents. They could further benefit from clearer questions proposed to the experts from the outset, based on real problems.
The work of those involved in best practices should be more visible. The reports should be open for comments before the IGF through a structured consultation process.
NETmundial could offer insights on how to do it and intersessional work should be used for that.
From what we saw in the reports, the best practices fora are still not the concrete outcomes that the working group on IGF improvements called for. Outputs could be a guide to policy development elsewhere.
More efforts need to be done in IGF Brazil to render the IGF more outcome-oriented and useful.
And lastly, the call for inputs on actions taken by stakeholders as a result of participation at the IGF should be made again this year with full publicity. This material could make a strong case for continuation of the IGF. Thank you."
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much. Now, next, government of Turkey, please.
>>IHSAN DURDU: Hi. Much better. Okay. Well, I'd like to -- this is Ihsan Durdu. I am speaking on my personal capacity this time, and I would like to thank to the chair, to you and UN DESA, and secretariat, and the MAG members, and the whole community for their contributions in the success of IGF 2014 Istanbul.
And I'll be honest with you, at the beginning I had some concerns because there were so many events taking place this year so I wasn't sure how the attendance will be, but luckily it turned out to be a good one, a high number of participation from not just developing countries but also from developed -- developed countries but also from developing countries.
And I hundred percent agree with the summary made by Chengetai, and also Virat made very good summary, on success factors on the success of IGF 2014. That also could be a guidance for the future work that we are doing here and the host countries that will be hosting the next events. And I know that the contribution -- the summary made by Virat, there were some other contributions from Marilyn and Cheryl and Subi and Liesyl and a few others.
Yes, just a few more things.
One thing was the -- especially for the attendants coming from the developing countries was it really helped with the ease of obtaining a visa free of charge and -- and we also introduced the eVisa. To be able to get a visa on line was quite helpful.
I strongly suggest that we can have the similar work for the future -- I mean, the host countries can also think -- can consider using similar visa issue processes.
And one other thing was the ease of the flights. The frequency and the number of the flights and the carriers serving to Istanbul was quite useful, but also the possibility of using low-cost carriers.
Many people that I met in Istanbul, they came, they arranged their flights in advance and at very low prices, so that was also an important factor in obtaining a high attendance.
Of course all the listing of being able to find accommodations for all possible levels and ease of transportation within the city was also a good contributor. And let's not forget, Istanbul is a quite interesting city for many people. They all would like to be part of any event taking place in Istanbul.
And again, I think the -- I'm sure our host country doing the -- the next 2015 IGF will be a very -- will do their best to make sure that it's a very successful event. Hopefully even better than Istanbul.
As far as I know, I attended NETmundial and it was quite successful and personally I trust Brazilian colleagues that are organizing the event.
Well, thanks again to departing members, MAG members who contributed to IGF 2014 and earlier ones, of course, and congratulations for the newcomers, and thank you and I -- nice to be a part of this beautiful team. Thank you again.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Ihsan, for your comments.
Of course as we saw from -- at the closing session of the Istanbul meeting, the environment where we're planning to be in November 2015 will be slightly different from Istanbul, so instead of historic buildings, we will have the beautiful sea, but nevertheless, looking forward also to a change of environment.
So next on the list of speakers is UNESCO, please.
>>UNESCO: Thank you, Chair. My name is Xianhong Hu from UNESCO. First I would like to echo with other colleagues to congratulate the success of IGF Istanbul and we look forward as its success will be continued and advanced in the forthcoming IGF in Brazil.
Secondly, that I think Mr. Chair has mentioned that UNESCO is conducting an Internet study in five areas, including free expression, privacy, access, and ethical dimensions, plus options for future as mandated by our member states.
We have presented a study in the Istanbul IGF and have received so many significant inputs from the stakeholders there.
Again, this shows the special value added of IGF to IGOs such as UNESCO to engage with stakeholders and discuss those complex and very edge-cutting issues. This really helps us inform our strategy and also with our member states to the post-2015 agenda.
And so this links to my next point that I'm also impressed by the very vibrant discussion on human rights-related issues in the IGF in Istanbul. I'm also very aware that actually the U.N. is so much mobilized to promote free expression and also human rights and privacy on Internet following the HRC resolution on promoting human rights on line and also the UNGA recent endorsement of privacy in the digital age, and now we are having a parallel conference organized by the office on human rights -- commissioner's office on the human rights and eBusiness in the United Nations here.
I really agree the proposal by former speakers to have a special major plenary, main session on human rights in the forthcoming IGF in Brazil. This will also help the United Nations on this ongoing debate to shape the post-2015 development agenda by highlighting human rights aspects since the Internet is really advancing and also posing challenges to all human rights in a profound way.
Lastly, let me come back to the UNESCO study. It's well underway. We are going to discuss first the draft of the study with a conference we are organizing in March, from 3 to 4 in March, 2015, and we also are very happy to host the next MAG meeting in the same week.
So I hereby welcome all of you to UNESCO in the first week of March, and both for the UNESCO conference and also for the MAG meeting.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you. Thank you very much, Xianhong, for your comments and also for invitation.
Of course we need to see how that fits the -- our timetable for our preparations, so we will be discussing that tomorrow and the day after tomorrow.
Next speaker on my list is Fatima. Please.
>>FATIMA CAMBRONERO: Thanks, Mr. Chair. This is Fatima Cambronero from Ageia Densi Argentina business society organization.
I agree with the contributions received and shared by the secretariat. I will also add some comments, trying to avoid repetition.
Regarding the main sessions, I agree that three hours are too long. I prefer a main focus session on two hours of duration without the workshops running in parallel.
Regarding the panelists of some main focus sessions, we had a lot of panelists in the -- in some main sessions and in some cases this not allowed the interaction and the dialogue with the community and the remote participation.
I also think that we need to put more focus on sessions of regional IGFs. I am also member of the program committee of the LAC IGF, the Latin American and Caribbean IGF, and in -- for this year, we are not -- we were not invited to the regional IGF session when we had seven years of experience of the regional IGF.
I think we need more inclusive regional IGF sessions for next year.
I agree with the comments on Constance on best practice forums.
I think we also need more outreach on that best practice session. This year, this worked very well, but I think we need more people involved in the best practice sessions.
I also think that we also have to reduce the number of workshops running in parallel. In some cases, we have workshops running in -- focused on the same topics or similar topics at the same time, and it is complicated to assist of them.
In relation to the organization of the main sessions, I consider as MAG members we have to have a special rule or something -- a rule, and we can -- that say we can involve as organizer in only one session to avoid the capture of the organization of the main sessions.
I also think we have to elaborate a guideline to the moderator of the main session to help them to include the community and the remote participations in the conversations.
I also think that we have to be careful in the inclusion of external events in the agenda of the official -- in the official agenda of the IGF to avoid confusion for the participants.
I also consider that we -- we have to set the subthemes of the next IGF in this meeting and also we have to create some working groups related to this subthemes to start working on the organization of the main focus session and start to discuss about the subthemes at the beginning of the next year.
I also think that we have to push the capacity-building activities in a similar sense in this year.
We have -- this year, we had regional (indiscernible) Webinars in different languages and related to the organizers of the regional IGFs, and I also think that this year -- the next year we have to improve the (indiscernible) Webinars. And I also agree on the comment of the intersessional work and I will stop now. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Fatima, for your comments and suggestions.
Next is Olga. Olga Cavalli.
>>OLGA CAVALLI: Thank you, Chair.
Sorry. Can you hear me? Yes.
This is Olga Cavalli from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Argentina. I'm a retiring MAG member after many years. I have learned a lot from this group. I want to thank all the colleagues who shared their knowledge with me and patient with me when I started. And I also tried to help new members when they came in.
I'm also very happy to see so many friends from the region in the new MAG composition. So I'm happy to help them, if they need. I plan to be around and I plan to contribute not as a MAG member but as a member of my government and we really like this process. We want to congratulate Turkey for a very successful -- friends from Turkey for a very successful IGF. We thought it was a very important meeting for the history of the IGF. We are extremely happy to have a new IGF, the next one in Brazil, our brother country from the region, and also the next one in Mexico. For Latin Americans, especially for some of us who have been working in trying to engage the community in the region, this is a major, major thing, a major achievement. And I really want to thank Brazil for hosting two times the IGF.
I remember the first IGF in 2007 being a very nice one. But at that time, we were a smaller group. The meeting was not so well-known, not so well-attended. And at that time, we saw that the participation of the Latin American countries was not so strong. So since then some of -- of all the regions, some of us in the region, we have been working towards that.
So I would like to stress this value for our Latin American and Caribbean region and try to work with our colleagues from the region and at the global level to work intersessionally, to engage our community as much as possible.
We are not -- we are a region that is not so well represented in all this international meetings. Sometimes they are very far away from us. We are very -- especially Argentina and other countries in the south, it is very expensive to travel. This is a great opportunity.
I would encourage all of us to promote intersessional work at the regional level. At the regional IGF, we will host the next School of Internet Governance in the region in Costa Rica. Very happy to do that with my friends from Costa Rica in April. And we grant fellowship to all the participants. So please tell us if you want to participate. Participation is open. We are receiving expressions of interest.
We have the national initiatives in different countries of Latin America. We have ISOC, our chapters, and many activities and many other things happening.
So I encourage our friends in the region to engage our Latin American and Caribbean community and make them stay, not only come for one or two IGFs but stay involved.
As a general comment, I won't repeat. We as Argentina welcome you for months and happy to discuss with other colleagues during these days. We think it is very important to have the human rights or a session or an open table but it really has a space and it doesn't collide with other activities that could diminish the participation.
We will keep being involved with capacity-building activities.
I also would like to support the comments from our friends from APC about gender reporting and gender information. And we believe that IGF could address a problem that we see as important, is a total lack of very few gender balance in leadership in ISTAR and Internet governance organizations. So I would be happy to join maybe our friends from APC -- I'm trying to find them, where are they -- in preparing perhaps a workshop about reviewing why that is happening. We have a lot of women well-prepared, professionals that could be perfectly part of those boards and leadership positions in these ISTAR and other organizations in Internet governance. Thank you. I will stop here. Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you. Thank you, Olga, for your comments. I would like to say that we have a long list of requests for the floor, at least ten. And we have about 50 minutes remaining. I would like to now start imposing a little bit of limitations in the speaking time.
So next is Mexico, Maria Caballero. Please.
>> VICTORIA ROMERO: Thank you, Chair. Good morning, colleagues. I will be brief as my colleague. My name is Victoria Romero, sorry, from the Mexican government. This is my second year with the MAG. Being very brief, Chair, I will just touch on some of the comments my colleague Olga Cavalli already said. It is very important not only for my country but for the region that the next couple of years will be extremely important.
One of the points I wanted to touch upon was the participation of developing countries. As Olga said, we have to really strengthen participation. And here in Geneva, we see that the knowledge of IGF is extremely limited, and I can say, among permanent missions or representatives of the government.
This comes because one of the challenges that we have for the next year would be to include them in MAG preparation of the next events. And we have to take advantage that some of these governments are represented here. And it's in a way very (indiscernible) that while governments are deciding the future of IGF, their knowledge is kind of limited. And we can take advantage of having some of them here in order to have a successful conclusion at the General Assembly, the adoption of the extension of the mandate of the IGF.
The second component was related to what Olga already explained about the integration of the regional and national perspective into the process. And the third point, Chair, that I wanted to talk this morning was following up on outreach. And this comes along with what I was saying at the beginning of trying to be as much as practical as much as possible and trying to share with developing countries what the IGF is and what has been happening. And there are lots of things going on and lots of good work that has been done. And only -- it remains only in the community of IGF. And I think our challenge has to be to make it as wide known as possible. Thank you, Chair.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much for your comments.
I'm now giving the floor to Jim, Jim Prendergast.
>> JIM PRENDERGAST: Thank you, Chair. This is Jim Prendergast with the Galway Strategy Group, not a member of the MAG nor not a member of the incoming MAG or the retiring MAG.
I just wanted to add some comments to some of the things we've heard already and reinforce and bring up some new issues. First off on the new formats that Izumi had mentioned earlier, as somebody who worked on some of the more creative and innovative and interactive sessions in the past, I think I could not agree more. I think one of the challenges we have with these new formats is some of the criteria that we use to evaluate the proposals.
So, for example, on diversity, when you don't have a panel, it is tough to have diversity on your panel. So I think we need to look at the evaluation criteria and take into account some of these new formats that we're trying to encourage.
On the best practices, I think that's a great innovation. A ton of things to Constance and ISOC for really getting that off the ground. Like any Version 1.0, I think there's an opportunity to improve, and I would suggest a couple of points. More lead time to advertise and get the word out about the best practice sessions.
I know last year we were challenged with the calendar. We started late, and we had a very early IGF. I think the calendar for this year sets up well for that and will only help us get the word out to more participants and get their input as well.
The outcome documents, you know, I think -- I'd like to see a little more visibility into how the feedback from the community was synthesized and considered and either accepted or rejected into the final documents. I think that would provide some valuable feedback to folks if those documents are developed.
And then, finally, you know, picking up on a comment over to the right about the day zero events, I think a little more clarity about the day zero events and the role they play in the IGF or the role that they don't play.
I remember hearing in one of the sessions on Monday in Istanbul that in an effort to try and encourage more participation from the group there was a comment to the effect of, "What we're seeing here is going to be forwarded to the Chair for inclusion into the final report." And I don't think that was the situation. I don't think that's what we had intended for the day zero event, so just a little more clarity around that I think would help delineate those from the official IGF schedule as opposed to providing an opportunity for folks to have events on the edge.
But overall, excellent event in Turkey. Great logistics. I heard some of the issues that folks had raised about logistics. I personally never experienced any of that, so either I was lucky or it was a good session overall. So thank you very much.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Jim, for your feedback. Just to say that I will give floor first to those who have not spoken yet, and then we'll come back to those who are asking second time for the floor.
ICANN is next on my list.
>> NIGEL HICKSON: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. And is it afternoon? Good afternoon to you and fellow participants. This is my -- Nigel Hickson, by the way. This is my first open consultation. I'm not a MAG member. I haven't been a MAG member. And I haven't been to this open consultation before, so it's a pleasure to be at it.
So a couple of reflections I suppose on Istanbul and then looking forward. And I realize there is always a balance on how much we look to the past and how much we look to the future. Certainly Istanbul was very enjoyable. I think it was very constructive. I think it was very productive. It was well-organized. It was in the right place at the right time. It allowed participation as has been said by Turkey and others from a wide variety of stakeholders, from a wide variety of countries.
And in that, I think that's exceptionally important because the Internet Governance Forum, if it is anything, it has to be diverse. It has to attract participants. It has to be dynamic. It has to be relevant. And I think Istanbul passed those tests.
Yes, one can always look at individual things that one would have preferred to have done better. I mean, I think some of the practical comments have been made already. Perhaps some of the panels were too large. People spoke for too long. But then that's always a difficulty.
I always have some confusion about day zero. Inherently, I don't like day zero. I think it's a -- one of those phrases which is rather -- I can't think of the right English word. My English is not very good.
[ Laughter ]
But I think day zero has the sort of connotation of superficial. It is vacuous. Is that okay? I think I'm getting the message across. I think it is great to have side events. Great, let's have side events. Let's have fringe events. Birds of a feather, that's another great expression, isn't it? Let's do that, but let's not have events that are restricted to certain people.
If we're going to have -- if we're going to have events on the fringe, then invite people to come to the fringe and whatever. But I think we need to refocus day zero.
I think the point that Avri made about participants is really important. And I think this gets back to the panelists, and let's be a bit more innovative on how we involve people in terms of a process and some of us were privileged to be at the Geneva internet Platform conference a couple of weeks ago here and saw innovative ways of including everyone, including remote participation.
And there again, I think there are some lessons to be learned perhaps from NETmundial in terms of having hubs which seemed to work so incredibly well and was so evocative.
So looking to the future, I think there are a number of substantial issues that no doubt will be -- have to be tackled in Brazil and as you said yourself, Mr. Chairman, the WSIS +10 review and how that's going to be formatted and formulated is exceptionally important.
And that really brings us to this notion of: Is the IGF an IGF meeting with regional and national meetings, or is it a dynamic process?
And I think it has to be the latter. I think as we go forward in this incredible and ever-increasing Internet sort of with a political -- Internet governance with a political and a social dimension, then the Internet Governance Forum comes into its own as a dynamic process.
And I think you put your hand on it when you said that in terms of the WSIS +10 preparation, it is no good just coming to the meeting in November and being presented with a paper that's been negotiated by governments and then the stakeholders saying, "We don't like this paper" because legitimately it will be too late.
Multistakeholderism implies that we have to be involved in the early stages of this preparation and, therefore, your comments about intersessional dialogue, whatever, I think is absolutely right. And to finish I think that whole notion of dynamic IGF brings into context the resources that are available to the IGF. The IGF is a unique experience. It is a unique way of getting people that aren't involved in Internet governance issues involved, and we owe that to the wider community. And we owe that to the community that aren't involved in these issues at the moment.
And, therefore, the resources in the MAG, the resources that the U.N. give to this process -- and I know there's many calls on U.N. time and resources -- but I think that's incredibly important as we move forward. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Nigel, for your comments. We can call it instead of day zero, we can call it pre-event day, if you wish. One thing, I mean, it does not matter how we call it. We need to understand what purpose that serves. That I note as well.
Next on my list is delegation of Egypt.
>>CHRISTINA ARIDA: Thank you, Chair. My name is Christina Arida. I'm speaking on behalf of the government of Egypt. I have the honor of working with the MAG representing Egypt as a former host of the IGF.
First, I would like to express on behalf of Egypt our appreciation and congratulations to the government of Turkey for the successful hosting and organization of IGF 2014 meeting in Istanbul.
I would also like to thank the secretariat for the excellent and comprehensive synthesis of comments and contributions. Valuable comments have been expressed by many colleagues. I will not try to be repetitive but would just like to briefly emphasize a few specific points.
That is one, the importance of providing stronger and more inclusive linkages to national and regional initiatives, not only within the IGF meeting itself but also during the preparatory process. For that I believe the meeting merit in providing both space and support intersessionally for engaging and integrating national and regional IGFs, especially from developing regions, and to have -- then provide input early on in developing the program and to be inspired by discussions that are happening within their own regions.
I would also like to join Marilyn in expressing how valuable it is to make available space for different side meetings and events. For that I thank both the host of IGF 2014 and the secretariat for providing support to the Arab IGF MAG to meet over two days in Istanbul at the venue, although this was even prior to the pre-event day.
I have to say this had a quite positive impact on the overall engagement and participation from the Arab region and the IGF meeting itself.
I also see value in the IGF expressed by Constance earlier to focus on one theme per day, then having one main session on that theme at the end of the day to capture discussions.
Finally, Egypt is looking forward to the Brazil meeting and thanks Brazil for hosting the IGF for the second time. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you very much. Before giving floor to Hossam, I will ask our remote participation -- remote participants to either speak or be read out.
>>REMOTE INVERVENTION: I will read from Anriette who is in South Africa and speaks as part of APC.
Some day zero events are actually very substantial and provide the opportunity to talk about specific issues in detail, for example, the NETmundial event and the sexual rights pre-event. The event we feel should be evaluated is the high-level event for governments. Is it really succeeds in achieves its goal of government participation? Can this be evaluated?
The MAG assesses the extent to which the current high-level pre-event with governments formats is effective in facilitating government participation in the IGF. But the statistics seem to indicate it's not working that well. So I propose an evaluation and for Brazil to take learning into account for next year. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Anriette, for your proposal.
I see Benedicto is writing it down.
[ Laughter ]
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Hossam, please. You have the floor.
>>HOSSAM ELGAMAL: Thank you, Chair.
Well, my name is Hossam Elgamal, and I represent Africa ICT Alliance, and ICC/BASIS and I come from Egypt.
This is my second year on the MAG and the first year for me was quite an eye-opener.
I've learned a lot, and with the help of many existing and outgoing MAG participants, it was a great opportunity.
I just have a few comments.
For the way the sessions are organized, I think more mind map organization style needs to be implemented. Again, connecting best practice forum, intersessional work, workshops, leading to the main session, so that we -- we have something well-structured and no conflicts would take place.
I think more -- sorry.
Again, something important is, we need really to allocate more specific time to the floor for participation because with too many on the session itself, we don't have really time for the floor to express and we don't get enough input from the floor.
I think we need to engage more, from now till the IGF time, in making more outreach -- and this is, I think, one of our objectives is making more outreach towards other and different stakeholders.
And I want to mention here again that we have many stakeholders that we need to engage, especially in sectors of great interest for developing countries. Health, education, finance, agriculture, energy.
We need more participants from this -- from government, from business, from academia, technical, and end users.
We need to see the challenges for access for those sectors and need to see how Internet can make a difference for those sectors as well. Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Hossam, for your reflections and comments, and now I'm turning to Liang Guo.
>>GUO LIANG: Okay. Thank you, Chair. My name is Guo Liang. I'm a researcher for the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. I'm also an outgoing MAG membership, will be retired after this MAG meeting.
I think MAG is not just a place to work but also a place to learn.
I think I learned a lot, and more than I contribute to -- what I contribute to the MAG.
I would like to thank all the MAG members.
During the last IGF meeting in Istanbul, I participate in a workshop on developed countries participation and the panelists mainly talk about education, to teach developing countries how to participate, but I would like to share my comments.
First, I intended to share my comments during the open microphone session but I thought there are too many MAG members taking the open microphone, so I would like to share it here.
I think the more important keywords is not "education" and "language barrier," but "motivation." Why developing countries want to come to IGF to -- what they can get, what they can learn, and what they can contribute to IGF. That's more important than these difficulties.
I'm happy to -- I remember three years ago when I first attend MAG meeting, I raised questions to have more developing countries participate, and the last year I raise questions. It sounds fair if we have the same standard to evaluate this workshop proposals, but actually it's not fair to developing countries, and I'm happy this year we have special consideration to these developing countries.
I just heard from Izumi that at the World Internet Conference in China recently at least it showed the Chinese government's willingness to participate in world IG, but I've been a MAG member for three years. Up till now, I have never heard a formal speech from Chinese government. I wish -- in the near future, I wish I could hear. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much. Now I'm turning to Cisco.
>>CHIP SHARP: Thank you, Mr. Chair. Chip Sharp from Cisco Systems. I am observing. I'm not a MAG member or previous MAG member, and my comments here are mainly -- are my own, don't represent Cisco's position on anything, but observations from the last IGF, which was the second IGF that I attended.
I think it was -- I had a much, I guess, better time, a much more organized time, I think due to some of the logistical improvements.
First, I want to -- I do want to congratulate and thank Turkey for being such a great host of the event. It's a little bit daunting having a meeting in Istanbul, considering the great history the city has. It's a crossroads of civilization, you know.
And I also look forward to the meeting next year in Brazil as well, and a good meeting I anticipate there as well.
A couple of things to go -- to mention. I think a lot of these issues have already been covered so I won't try to cover everything, but quickly, I was just concurring with the input from Mr. Prendergast concerning the best practice forums. I think we had a very truncated schedule last year and I think this year we will have much more time to work on these things before the IGF meeting.
One thing is, I think in terms of how the best practice forum reports evolve, the reports that I looked at identify, you know, further work needed and, you know, the question is, you know, how do we keep the best practice reports up to date while adding and working on new issues, and that is a concern, and I look forward to, you know, working with ISOC and I appreciate the work that Constance did in bringing these things together.
I think it was very good, considering the short time frame we had.
The other intersessional work, one concern I have is, you know, if the intersessional work is to produce output, we need to -- the MAG needs to clearly identify what the goal is and what the output will be. How will input be included in that work. And what process will be used to decide what goes into the -- to the intersessional work and how it gets put into the output. I look forward to working on that further as well.
WSIS 10-year review, I think Mr. Hickson also mentioned this. I am hoping there will be a consultation before November. Of course, you know, I don't -- I'm not in charge of that process and other people will be deciding these things, but I think earlier consultation will be necessary in order to actually have any input to what comes into December.
I don't oppose any kind of -- I do -- I do like the idea of having some discussion of that at the IGF, but I think actually starting at that point is a little bit too late.
In logistics, just one quick thing. I appreciate the online schedule. It helped keep things organized. But I would like an easier way to get the online schedule into my local calendar for those times when I'm not actually connected to the network. It will be easier to get to the right session.
Thank you very much for your help and thank you for your work. Bye.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you. I hope you will stay with us. You said "bye," but I hope you will still continue with us.
[ Laughter ]
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So now I'm going to invite Kossi Amessinou to take the floor.
>>KOSSI AMESSINOU: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I thank the ITU secretariat and the organizing country, the host of 2014, for the hospitality which we have received, and I urge the organizers of 2015 IGF to do the same or better.
In fact, there are challenges which we have managed to accept, but there are others, as so much is at stake.
When we have high-level meetings and opening and closing sessions, we see that the regional representation is not always there. It would be very interesting that each region of the world be properly represented so that the point of view of the regions be heard, as the stakes are not the same in various regions.
So if we could do that at the opening and closing sessions. Especially at the opening sessions.
And then at the closing sessions we would probably wrap up and see to what extent these comments have been taken into account.
Then there are parallel sessions. This can be well-managed if there's topical workshops, but the panelist sessions are confusing for the new members of MAG.
I was lucky to be there in 2014 with someone from the public administration, but I needed to understand many things. It had to be explained to me. At the end of IGF -- at the end of IGF, I had the feeling that something was missing.
So perhaps we are not using the most efficient way of speaking to people who are there for the first time.
How do we convey the information to the high-level persons who arrive? How this information is transmitted is very important. And if there are good practices, we'd like to use them.
I am from Benin. We would like in Benin very much to adopt these good practices, but of course we have to base on what has already been achieved. So the past experience is very important for us. The question of education, health, agriculture, all of that can be helped with the ICTs and the technology.
I've also noted that we have specific sessions for regional discussions, yes, but frequently the same people would take the regional decisions and come time and again in order to state the same points.
We have -- is it possible to have these interregional sessions, rather, so that the regions share their experiences, see whether experiences -- instead of having parallel sessions in an isolated room? Then the regions could have a greater exchange.
Now, I'd like also to urge the actors who are participants in the parallel sessions to participate more because there was a linguistic barrier, after all. Each time when we were switching from one room to another, we had to check whether interpretation was provided for participants.
If it is provided, then the people can benefit best. Thank you for your attention, sir.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Kossi, for these comments, and now I turn to Ms. Ho, Bianca Caroline. You have the floor.
>>BIANCA CAROLINE HO: Hi. Thank you, Chair. This is Bianca from NetMission in Asia, which is a civil society in Asia, and I'm a new MAG member, so I really want to thank MAG for having youth members on here this year, and there are three other young terms including myself, Ephraim Percy Kenyanito as well as Aida Mahmutovic. I'm sorry for the bad pronunciation.
We are very thankful for having a main session with interpretation for the workshop 173, the youth involvement in Internet governance, and also young members to speak at the closing session. I think those are very promising progress that we've seen with youth participation.
As mentioned earlier in the synthesis paper, we already talked about better youth participation but it hasn't been elaborated so I just have a few ideas in mind.
I think one of the good ways would be to build a resource platform for intersessional work as a dynamic process.
For example, things like a youth-friendly toolkit which could be congruent with a capacity-building idea to better prepare and have a better quality of the discussion in IGF with youth.
The other thing is also to engage more youth in panels, which they might be experts in the panel topics that you might mention.
So there's an idea of having a youth resource person as a platform so people can share, you know, what youth are good at and you can also look for the right youth members to participate in your panels.
The other thing that I think would be important is to have reporting.
So I've heard a lot on gender reporting. It would be also good to see there's reporting on youth participation.
Number three, I think as MAG members, one of the main things that we can do is we can be a mentor of youth members or even new MAG members, as myself. I would find that greatly useful. And number four, I think for the Brazilian IGF, we would love to see more local youth engagement and we would be very happy to help with that process as well. Thank you, Chair.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you very much.
Matthew is next.
>>MATTHEW SHEARS: Thank you, Chair. Matthew Shears with the Center for Democracy and Technology.
Much has been said so let me just pick up on a couple of things.
We very much support Anriette's comments on day zero. We felt day zero was an incredibly substantive and valuable event. And we also support the notion that we need to do as much as we can to improve the high-level event, and if that means an evaluation of sorts, then that would be incredibly useful.
We also support intersessional work. Our suggestion -- I think it's already been made, actually -- is that this intersessional work is a good way of drawing a thread through the national and regional IGFs as well, so perhaps we can find subjects for the intersessional work that can be discussed at different levels across the year for 2015.
We need to give local activists a far better voice.
I have to say that probably of all the -- the criticisms one might have of IGF Istanbul, it was our inability, for whatever reasons, to actually be able to give activists a voice in the IGF, and that does need to be addressed.
We talk about strengthening outputs, and I'd like to talk just -- just make a -- put a pointer in for the Friends of the IGF Web site, because finding -- accessibility of reporting and the videos on the IGF Web site itself is not that easy, but fortunately there's this other Web site that you can go to and search through the videos, and that's an excellent resource.
And finally, also on the issue of outputs, I'd like to highlight the reports from the best practices forums that I understand have only just been put up about a week or so ago.
Those are -- and I'd just like to point to the one on spam and CERTs.
Those are incredibly useful and substantive outputs and are definitely the kind of materials that we want to be looking at contributing to and creating going forward.
And then of course the question has to be asked: How are we communicating those reports and those outputs to influencers and policymakers, and I think that comes to an issue that I'm assuming will be discussed over the next two days, which is, how do we communicate better about the substantive outputs of the IGF as a whole. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: So thank you, Matthew.
>> ARNOLD VAN RHIJN: Thank you, Chair. I will keep it short. A lot of this has been written down in the synthesis paper and has been said in the room about improvements of the IGF process. We fully support the suggestion made. I have to express my name. I'm Arnold van Rhijn, Dutch government, Ministry of Economic Affairs.
As I said, we fully share and support the many suggestions made by the participants. However, I would like to highlight one thing, the need to have intersessional work. I think we should have an online platform where discussions can continue between IGFs. Perhaps that could be an online spot on the Web site of the IGF where all stakeholders, regional and national IGFs, can meet and continue the discussion on all kinds of Internet-related issues.
Furthermore, day zero, I noted the remark from ICANN that we should refocus the program. While I don't have the experience of having attendance at day zero because the Dutch IGF has our own program in the host country by meeting all kinds of stakeholders to discuss Internet-related topics. And this has been very useful.
However, one could think of perhaps -- part of the program could be meeting between the organizers of national and regional IGFs together with the IGF secretariat to share best practices and to see where we could strengthen ourselves much better. This could be perhaps a suggestion.
Finally, Chair, last week, from Europe, there was a very clear and strong political signal because the European Council concluded very important conclusions on the Internet governance process. And it was strong support of the multistakeholder model as well as the support of renewing the mandate of the IGF.
And I think, Chair, it's now up to the IGF to show that, indeed, there is life for this unique platform after 2015. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you very much, Arnold, for your comments and encouragement.
We are approaching 1:00, and it seems to me that we will not exhaust the list of speakers before the lunch. And, therefore, there are -- there is one new participant -- remote participant, and then there is another one who already spoke in line. And maybe I will take -- I will take now remote participants in order the first one who has not spoken yet. And that is Ephraim Kenyanito.
>>EPHRAIM KENYANITO: Thank you for this opportunity. I just wanted to emphasize what Bianca and Matthew talked about locally. Sorry. I'm Ephraim Kenyanito. I'm one of the new MAG member. Thank you for this opportunity.
Just to keep it short, I just wanted to emphasize local engagement and involving people in the host country because, for example, during the workshop (indiscernible) in the youth coalition Internet governance sessions, we had a brief discussion with some of the young people who were serving. And they were very helpful in the venue in Istanbul. And some of them were not aware about the meeting until that week before.
It will be good to have a way of the host country, especially Brazil, to reach out to (indiscernible) universities and just local involvement so that they can be more aware about why these discussions are important to them and why they should participate.
And then just to emphasize on Bianca's point, during the workshop (indiscernible) in Istanbul and the youth coalition, we had a suggestion of having best practices forum on youth involvement because that's a challenge. We had one on child protection which was -- it went really well. But we would suggest that we take into consideration having a best practice forum on youth involvement. Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Ephraim, for your comments and suggestions. And now I'm turning to the next one. I think it's Subi. Subi, please -- since you are talking second time, please try to be as brief as you can.
>>SUBI CHATURVEDI: Thank you, Janis. I will keep it as brief. So I just wanted to highlight something from NETmundial and the lessons that we learned from the ability to enhance multistakeholder participation and process for an integral part of it.
We have been having a lot of conversation about enhancing new voices and their presence physically at the IGF. And I hope and pray that cgi.br through its incredible means and ways may continue to do the same at this IGF. IGF SA is also a new initiative, but we need as many resources to pull in to facilitate new voices. And that's one barrier that we can easily overcome because it is going to be expensive to get there.
One quick point from the high-level panel, I hope that we can also enhance both stakeholder and gender balance this time and explore that the high-level panel can be in the middle of the program because key government decision makers tend to leave by day two. And we would like them to be here and listen in. So this is one strong request, if we can explore in terms of suggestions for programming.
And the third and last point is about regional and national IGFs. A bit like the Nobel Prizes, when you recognize an issue, you give them a platform to go global. The main sessions at the IGF are a little like that. So if we can look at creating more value and also putting the spotlight on regional and national initiatives.
To end my comments, I strongly support Bianca and Ephraim, the resources for youth and enhancing youth participation is an absolute must. And I would be delighted to join my young colleagues in this initiative. Thank you, Janis.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you very much.
Next is Jivan.
>> JIVAN GJORGJINSKI: Yes, hello. I am sorry. I unfortunately wasn't able to attend the IGF in Istanbul because last minute I was called in to go to the NITA (phonetic) summit, and it was at the same time. But I was following it from the side. And not only what the discussions were developing but with an eye on how it was communicating to the world that is not following it directly. And I think that we still have some improvements to do on this front.
I think we can communicate our messages much better and what is going on here much better. So I think that this is another thing that -- I think we should put at priority between now and next year to really develop a communication strategy, strategic engagement. The British government has been great at developing this and others as well.
I think between now and Brazil, we have to think what are the messages that we -- what are the things we want to emphasize, not messages but what are the processes we want to emphasize and not necessarily only from the IGF but also from other processes, whether it is ICANN or other technical bodies that are going on.
One of the things that we do is to put a spotlight on important Internet issues, and that is something that we should do more actively, I think.
Turkey is a great host. I keep on hearing that. I know that from being from the region, I have no doubt about. Thank you for reminding us, Chair, we will be by the sea. That is frustrating enough to be able to work with the coastline close by. But perhaps this is where day zero comes in as a good thing so we can climatize and find out how to work in such an environment.
So just that. I do think we should put it as a priority to really think of a communication strategy and how to communicate the importance of the Internet governance process between now and Brazil and while we're at the IGF in Brazil next year. Cheers.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Jivan, for your very optimistic comments and also proposal to think about strategic communications or communication strategy, rather.
So now I would like to invite Towela. Towela, take the floor.
>>TOWELA JERE: Thank you, Chair. My name is Towela Nyirenda Jere. I'm from the NEPAD agency, a technical arm of the African Union. And I am a MAG member for the second year.
Just a few comments which I will be very brief with mostly reinforcing what has already been said.
The first thing is really on the high-level meeting on day zero and just getting a lot more clarity on the purpose and also the participation in that meeting. I think that the missed opportunities in terms of engaging African governments in that process, because of perhaps the way in which the communication is actually done. And I think it will be useful to actually explore mechanisms that would actually engage more African governments to participate in that session.
Also, I want to register a concern about the speakers in the opening and closing sessions. I think it has been expressed in terms of the lack of regional balancing, but I think there is also a very noticeable gender skew in those sessions.
I would also like to echo the (indiscernible) to consider how to work with and through the national and regional initiatives as far as strengthening remote participation. One of the challenges that I personally encountered with trying to set up remote hubs is that I think when you look at the messaging that comes from the secretariat, there is a tacit assumption that those are organizing the hubs would already understand the space. And I think we need to think about how do we actually reach out to people who may not be actually actively participating in the IG space who may not even have an understanding of what a remote hub actually is beyond the description that is actually put up on the Web site and how one actually goes about organizing a remote hub.
I would also want to echo the comments that the remote participation, the remote hubs. I think this is something that needs to start much earlier and should be part of an ongoing process of engagement and not just focused on the event itself.
As far as the visa issues, I do take note of the government of Turkey's efforts as far as eVisas. I would also want to mention that this -- there were problems with visa applications, especially for some African participants. We do not get eVisas, and we had to pay for the visas. So I think this is something that people have to look at. It is not very always easy for African stakeholders when they want to participate because of visa issues. And this needs to also be taken into consideration.
In terms of the output that comes out of the IGF, I think the Chair's summary and the best practice forums are a good initiative. And I think that there needs to be now a way of determining how those actually are communicated to the different stakeholder groupings. And, again, I think there is maybe a need to think through how to actually use the regional and national initiatives as channels for disseminating and communicating some of these messages. Thank you, Chair.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Towela, for your comments. I will now before giving the floor to the last speaker this session, I will ask Virat briefly to say what you wanted to say already hour and a half ago.
>> VIRAT BHATIA: I want to respond to some of the points that have been made by a number of people on the main sessions. I want to just very briefly make that specific point.
Firstly, we take on board, I think, we should start calling everybody participants or delegates. We should all agree and move to that language lingo as it were. Secondly, I think the point about intersessional work carrying across IGFs and does not end at IGF, I think we sort of support that.
Let me come to the main session because a lot of comments have been made. And that, by the way, formulates the -- 25 new MAG members, but that formulates a large part of what the MAG does apart from the scheduling.
Here is the deal. We have about -- in terms of numbers, we have six stakeholders and five regions. So that's 30. On top of that, we have the need to balance gender and new voices.
Even if you were to cut that by half and ignore half of those as representations in the main sessions, you are down to 15 or 16. If they spoke for only six minutes each, two, three-minute interventions, one their opening intervention, one perhaps a response, you are up to 96 to 100 minutes. So a two-hour session will leave you 20 minutes, including the moderator and the chair's comments which I've not added in this. So we cut it to half. We limit them to six minutes. Two brief sessions. And we still have a challenge.
So as we discuss the main sessions and somebody who arranged a main session with 16 of my MAG colleagues, I can tell you that there are some serious time challenges which we must take into consideration as we get into the main discussion. But that's what it is.
You can't get people into the main session and have them make a three-minute intervention and leave after two hours. So we'll have to think about all of those points in view of the time limit and meaningful main session. Thank you.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you. And the last speaker for this session will be Susie Hargreaves.
>> SUSIE HARGREAVES: Thank you. I'm Susie Hargreaves. I'm from the Internet Watch Foundation in the U.K. I work in the child online protection field. I just wanted to raise a couple of issues in relation to that. First of all, there was quite a lot of concerned feedback about the best practice guide on child online protection as we felt it was a very rushed process. And, in fact, what it did do was duplicate but not very well the child online protection guidance practice pulled together by ITU which we've all worked on for many years.
So our message on that would be that we think any best practice guides need to add to and complement and add value to what's existing but not try and replace.
The second concern that I have is that if we move to theme days that child online protection could potentially get lost as it is currently seen as a marginal activity. And it needs to be focused at the heart of everything.
A third point on this is that there is a lot of talk about young people being more involved, and I would wholeheartedly endorse that 100%. But I think we need to also recognize that the issue of child online protection relies on a multistakeholder approach and including young people won't be the answer in itself. That actually we need to ensure that all the relevant stakeholders are there and in a particular industry that I don't think are well-represented at the IGF.
And then, finally, on another point completely, nothing to do with child protection, I just wanted to raise the fact that I agree with previous speakers that IGF is quite an intimidating process for people who are new. I have been to three IGFs. But certainly it's quite hard to kind of know, you know, where to go, what to do, who's what, where, and how and actually some kind of user-friendly introductory guide would be really helpful. Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR KARKLINS: Thank you, Susie, for your suggestions. So that brings to the end of this morning's session. We had very interesting and fruitful exchange and gathered a lot of information that I will try to sum up during the afternoon session after listening to interventions from other participants.
I have three more on my list, Markus, Lea, and ICC-BASIS. I see more. They're remote. And then there is also Baher. So we are breaking now, and we will resume at 3:00 sharp. And I mean 3:00 Swiss time, not 3:00 international organization time.
[ Laughter ]
You saw that I did not specify because this is very generalized. Please, 3:00, be back in this room and we will resume our work. So thank you. Bon appetit.
For those who are not familiar with this building, please, when you go out and you continue in the direction how you came in, you got your badges, there is a canteen, cafeteria. Otherwise, you can go out. There are a number of restaurants in this area. Thank you. See you at 3:00.