IGF 2022 Lightning Talk #46 Diverse Approaches for an Ageing-friendly Internet

Thursday, 1st December, 2022 (06:30 UTC) - Thursday, 1st December, 2022 (07:00 UTC)
Speaker's Corner

Internet Society of China, Civil Society, Asia Pacific
CNNIC, Technical Community, Asia Pacific
Chinese Institute of Electronics, Academic Group, Asia Pacific


1. Mr. WANG Wei (Robert WANG), Chief Operating Officer of Weibo, Chief Executive Officer of Sina Mobile, Private Sector, Asia Pacific
2. Mr. Jian LUO, CEO, GuoXingZhongKe Information Technology Center, Private Sector, Asia Pacific



Onsite Moderator

Caleb Olumuyiwa Ogundele, African Academic Network on Internet Policy

Online Moderator

Rui ZHONG, Internet Society of China


Rui ZHONG, Internet Society of China



Targets: The proposal aims to discuss how to empower the ageing group to have an equal access to information so that they could enjoy the education and development opportunity the same as other, which is closely to the goal of 4.5 of SDGs.



Duration (minutes)



With the rapid development of Internet and digital transformation, human society has already entered the new digital age. However, there are some unconnected groups still need to be connected, as they may face some difficulties in using Internet or smart technology, for example, the elderly group. The Internet applications and technologies developed so fast that the elderly generally could not catch up with the pace of the development so good as the young people did, due to various reasons such as visual disabilities, illiteracy, lack of skill in using smart devices. It is also an issue very relevant to the information accessibility. Therefore, how to improve the elderly capacity building on using ICTs will be of very important significance to narrow the digital divide and empower the elderly with equal access to the information. In this session, multi-staked holders representatives will be invited to share their new findings, suggestions on policies, or best practices on how to facilitate an ageing-friendly and barrier-free information society by different approaches to improve the functions on websites or APP for the elderly.

Interaction will be greatly encouraged for the audience both onsite and online to raise questions or make comments afther the speakers' presentation. We will control the speech time so that enough time left for interaction. Before the meeting, we will share the session info through various social media to invite audience for attention.

Key Takeaways (* deadline 2 hours after session)

The session highlights an important principle: our society should not just serve the material but also the recreational needs of senior citizens that needs diverse efforts from multi-staked holders.

Call to Action (* deadline 2 hours after session)

The technical communities and private sectors are requested to create more inclusive software and services that the elderly can easily use. The government should play the role as policy-maker to facilitate the general law or regulation framework to protect the legal rights of various vulnerable groups. The civil society should enhance the industry cooperation and conduct training or education for the users to promote connecting the unconnected.

Session Report (* deadline 26 October) - click on the ? symbol for instructions

We are facing an increasing growth of aging number that how to ensure and empower the aging groups to enjoy the equal digital times becomes one of important issues related to digital divide. The theme of the session "Diverse Approaches for an Ageing-friendly Internet" is set to seek for and share best practice of policy and actions.

China is the large country in population that the people over 60 age is about 264 million, accounting for 18.70% of the whole population. To cope with the trend of the aging of population has put into the national strategy. In this regard, China has incorporated information and communication technology into major people's livelihood projects since 2020, especially for the aging group. It vigorously promotes the aging transformation of smart terminal products such as mobile devices, helping elderly to use it to obtain information services more conveniently and easily.

The two speakers shared the info and best practice of the Chinese community's efforts to promote the inclusive information society for the aging group. Weibo, a Twitter similar social network product, is very popular among Chinese community has provided "Aging Version" APP in 2021 could enlarge font and easy interact in its interface. For the e-gov services, more and more gov or public service websites began to update the functions to provide "Aging Version" to let the elderly access more easily. Meanwhile, technology innovation is taken to enable the screen reader software to upgrade by simply using a tool bar to transform between the ordinary version and aging friendly version. 

It is no doubt that to achieve the goal of connect the unconnected or make the connect more easily needs efforts from multi-stakeholders. The technical community shall enhance the technology innovation and standard research, the private sector shall promote the product and service to the market, the civil society shall conduct education or training or social event to increase the public awareness, while the governance shall develop comprehensive policy frameworks to ensure and facilitate the process be realized.

In the policy making perspective, an overall comprehensive strategy or planning is very necessary to define different actors and implement tasks, including objective, missions, timeline, encouragement mechanism, punishment mechanism, safeguard measures etc. It also could be speechified into various policy actions, such as how to stimulate or encourage the market application, how to cultivate or conduct the systematic talent development, how to promote the technology innovation.  

During the process, all stakeholders are encouraged to participate into or contribute to the policy from various angles, all voice shall be carefully heard and be respected. The inclusive information or digital times needs efforts from all.