>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Can we take our seats, please.
Thank you, and welcome to the second of last day of the MAG meeting of our three-day Open Consultations and MAG meeting. And I guess you know everything. We're being recorded, transcript. A summary report of the action points and the main points of the meeting will be made and present on the website and sent out next week. And if -- When you're given the floor, please just quickly state your name and affiliation just for the record. Thank you.
And with that, I hand it over it our chair, Paul Mitchell, to start the meeting. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you, and welcome to all the newcomers, the latecomers.
I want to thank all of you for all of the work that you did yesterday, because we are basically a full day ahead in our agenda. And that gives us a lot of flexibility for today to make sure that we're solid in our decisions, that we understand where the next steps are or the -- or the organization as a whole, and to clarify anything that was not clear in terms of the outputs and decisions of the groups that we had working yesterday.
So I'd like to open the floor for the next half hour or so to just recap from each of the working groups that we had yesterday for the themes, starting with group one and going through, to make sure that we're clear on what decision was made, and that all of the questions from different participants have an opportunity to be answered.
Okay? Is that clear?
So I solicit the opportunity for people -- first of all, starting with group one, to recap the decisions, and then we'll take questions and commentary, anything you might have thought of overnight and make sure that we've locked things in.
Later on in the day we'll also -- I teased this yesterday, we will review a draft revision to the terms of reference for this organization, for the MAG. And I look forward to taking feedback and presenting that on behalf of the small group, working group that drafted it. And so you can look forward to that before we end the day.
Okay. So group one, who is going to take on the responsibility?
Group one was -- group one was connectivity and human rights. And group two is AI. Group three is security. And group four is data and Internet fragmentation. Okay?
So group one, connectivity and human rights.
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Good morning, everyone, Karim Attoumani Mohamed, MAG member.
Just we give the list of the selected workshop? Okay.
The connectivity group come up with 25 selected workshop proposal, and the first one is -- do you need also the number of the workshop? I don't know exactly what -- what the is expected for us -- from us.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Sorry, I can't...
>> (Indiscernible) The workshops (indiscernible).
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Okay. Yeah.
Okay. The first one is the 162, Rural Community Networks, Electricity and Digital Inclusion.
Next, 235, Dialogue on the Declaration for the Future of the Internet.
Third, 292, Connectivity at the Critical Time: During and After Crises
Next, 411, Move Fast and Fix Policy: Advocacy in an Era of Rapid Change.
>> Just give the names. Don't give the give the workshop number because (indiscernible).
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Okay. Thank you. Digital Wellbeing of Youth: Self-Generated Sexualized Content. Building a Safe and Trustworthy Digital World for All Children. Internet Shutdowns: Diverse Risks, Challenges, and Needs. It is For All: Meaningful Access and Affordable Internet. Fighting the Creators and Spreaders of Untruths Online. Lessons Learned from Capacity Building in the Global South. Platform Regulation: Perspectives from the Global South. Declaration for the Future of the Internet. Global Governance of LEO Satellite Broadband. Overcome Effectiveness Challenges in CNs' Project. New Data and Fairer Access to Health Using the Internet. Strengthening African Voices in Global Digital Policy. Financing Mechanisms for Locally-Owned Internet Networks. Youth Lenses on Meaningful Access and Universal Connectivity. Youth Lenses on Meaningful Access and Universal Connectivity. Harnessing the Power of Accessible Technology. Role of Community to Achieve Universal Acceptance. The Future of Interplanetary Networks: A Talk with Vint Cerf. Creating a Safer Internet While Protecting Human Rights. Global Youth Engagement in Internet Governance: Successes and Opportunities. Accountability in Building Digital ID Infrastructures. To Regulate or Not to Regulate.
And that's it.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you very much.
Is there anyone in the room who would like to -- questions to group one? This is the list of approved sessions for group one.
>>AMADO ESPINOSA: Karim -- Amado Espinosa. What was the criteria for you to pick those workshops related to interplanetary and satellite and this kind of stuff. Because we also had a similar proposal, but we thought maybe they were not capable to put in 60 minutes the whole information necessary to organize a reasonable workshop.
What was the criteria in your case?
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Okay, I will try to give some point, but colleague from the (indiscernible) group will add.
We started first of all from the top-ranked proposal as a result from two groups' affiliation. And I think that's if a proposal was ranked up 20 top proposal, we -- it's a result for global common evaluation.
The second point was about effectively the content, because most of the proposal talk about connectivity and how to improve access for -- in this perspective of women and connecting the most of people.
So regarding low satellites broadband, this bring another piece in how we can today improve connecting people around the world by diverse solution. And I think, yes, we can have the same topic in multiple themes, but I don't know, we analyze it as it was in our -- our thematic group. So I don't know if others, member from group, can add something.
>>MAARIT PALOVIRTA: May I add something?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes.
>>MAARIT PALOVIRTA: Yeah, just to say that, indeed, we also -- I think I agree with everything Karim said, and there's also a strategic kind of consideration for the future of connectivity. So for in Europe, for one, there's a lot of discussion now about satellites and also connectivity in space, which, for example, is apparently going to be much more ecological and energy efficient than the connected infrastructures that we have on the ground.
So we also thought that, as we discussed in the beginning of the MAG meeting, that the MAG also should look into not only to the things that have already discussed in the past but also perhaps future trends and new topics, that these might be interesting additions to the agenda. Because we still had very solid sessions on meaningful access and community networks and all those traditional topics. So we thought this would be also good addition.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Yes, Amado.
>>AMADO ESPINOSA: My question will be: Those papers are more social oriented or more technological oriented?
>>MAARIT PALOVIRTA: Yes, Maarit again.
I think they were combinations. They are not overly technical but they're looking at, I guess, the economic but also societal impact of using new connectivity solutions to deliver connectivity.
And when we talk about satellite, of course, also very much to the remote and rural areas, which I think will be a combination factor especially for community networks, so we had quite a few workshops that we accepted on community networks.
So I think there's a technological aspect, but also then this will feed into the economics and also the societal impact of connectivity.
>>AMADO ESPINOSA: Thanks.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Go ahead.
>>TALANT SULTANOV: Thanks so much, chair. Talant Sultanov.
When reviewing this particular proposal, I come from a land-locked mountainous country in central Asia. And we have some locations which are really impossible to connect through traditional means, through fiber or through WiFi. And I think satellite becomes maybe one of the only options to connect such locations.
That's why when I was reviewing this proposal, for me, it sounded -- It's, I think, one of very promising technologies that could actually bridge the digital divide and reach out to the most difficulty areas for Internet connectivity. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Go ahead.
>>ALHAGIE MBOW: Thank you.
I think overall it's two aspects of the evaluation. One is the connectivity aspect which is the technological part of it, like he just mentioned.
And the second aspect also is about trying to reach out to the other areas, which are social, which is about community networks. And our proposals here actually has to do with community networks, so we thought this is actually very important.
Now, you know, in the past there has been a lot of issues led into satellite communications in the world. Most of them actually fail, but they have innovated again. So there are new technologies that are coming in, and that could actually help a lot to kind of connect the all connected, easily -- those areas that are not actually easily connected.
So I think it's an issue of really trying to connect the all connected using the satellite communication systems. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Anyone else want some clarification on the decisions made by this group?
Great. Then we'll move onto the next group.
>>AMADO ESPINOSA: Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for giving us the floor. Amado Espinosa from group two. Our group was appointed to evaluate assurance in certification, emerging AI technologies and also including artificial intelligence.
We were partly discussing about the scope we wanted to cover with the inclusion of the presentation of these workshops in order for you to have a better idea what is actually possible to achieve nowadays with the technology that we have and what is not and how can we actually inform the community about the innovations and improvements in this direction.
Then the first workshop was number 58, Realizing Trustworthy AI through Stakeholder Collaborations.
The second one is 350, Why (indiscernible) Transformation in AI Matter for Justice.
The third, 219, Global AI Governance for Sustainable Development.
The next one, 240, Pathways to Equitable and Safe Development of AGI.
Next one, 354, Effective Computing, the Governance Challenges.
The next one, 424, How Can Data Justice be Realized Practically?
Next one, 497, Designing an AI Ethical Framework in the Global South.
The next one, 452, Reducing Disparate Outcomes with Digital Health Tools.
Next one, 406, Meaningful, (indiscernible) Transparency in the Global South.
Next one, 217, Joint Efforts to Build a Responsible and Sustainable Metaverse.
Next one, 206, AI, Need for (indiscernible) Regulation for the Global South.
Next one, 258, Governing AI in Education, Technologies Transforming Education.
Next one, 439, (indiscernible) AI Governance, Challenges and Lessons.
And the next one, 364, (indiscernible) Metaverse, Blurring Letter of the Law.
And we have one proposal which requires to be improved. This is the number 337, Assurance in Certifications of Emerging Technologies, which we have to double-check with the proposers if they are -- if they can make a better combination of speakers.
And my last comment is for you that, yes, we have to -- we try to cover a wide umbrella of papers, of presentations. And we are trying to have an enriched program.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Thank you. Amrita for the record. There was another proposal which another group had forwarded to us. It is workshop 332. I would request all the members of the group to look at it. It's Leapfrogging internet Technology, Role in Post-pandemic Era, 332. If it is okay, we would be submitting it from our own group.
But the idea for us was to have more varied kind of discussions within this particular topic, starting from ed tech to health to gender bias in using technologies to social media governance, the gaps between the North and South -- Global North and South, data justice, using of technology in judiciary.
So we have tried to balance. But in case you all feel there is something lacking -- we didn't want to repeat topics, but if you go through the list and you feel that there is something which is repetitive, we would be happy to kind of relook.
But some of the topics were going to feed into the GDC, so we felt those were important to incorporate in this list. Thank you.
>>AMADO ESPINOSA: Mr. Chairman, if I may. Yesterday we had a very fruitful discussion with our colleague from UNESCO in order to look at this convergence or these combinations of open forums and workshops from experts coming up from UNESCO. And she kindly is offering us to double-check with her team which UNESCO experts are going to be part of the workshops in order to avoid any convergence of topics at the same event.
But I want to publicly thank our colleague for her willingness to make a very good program out of the proposals. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Any requests for clarification?
>>ADAM PEAKE: It's a question for Amrita really. 332, we picked this up from the fragmentation group. Was 332 in their accepted batch, or is this making an additional workshop to our total?
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: So, Adam -- Amrita, for the record -- they had mentioned it was in the list, but they found that it was more suited to our bucket. But that group would -- the fragmentation group would clarify.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Anything else to add for group two? Any other questions for group two? Then let's move to group three, security.
I'm trusting that the secretariat is getting all these conferences down.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: We go with security. Right?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Thank you, Paul. Good morning, everyone.
The selected workshops are: Dark Patterns, an Online Challenge in Consumer Protection. Platform Responsibilities for Journalists, Digital Safety. Generation Z in Cyberspace: Are We Safe Online? Towards Cyber Development Goals: Implementing Global Norms.
The next one, Protecting Shared Computation, Cloud Security. Blurred Lines Between Fact and Fiction: Disinformation Online. A Helpful Approach of Data Protection in Messaging Apps. Cyberattacks and eEvidence: Attribution and Accountability.
Skills of Tomorrow Youth on the Cybersecurity Job Market. Addressing the Gap in Measuring the Harm of Cyberattacks. Capacity Building for Safety -- for Safe and Secure Cyberspace: Making It Real. International Legal Dimensions of Cyberspace in Ukraine. Human Rights-Centered Technology in Emergency -- Sorry. This is the -- Let me see if I can find the updated list, because we have one difference.
Yeah. This is the one.
I was in number 7, 8, 9, and 10.
Addressing the Gap in Measuring the Harm of Cyberattacks. Capacity Building for Safe and Secure Cyberspace: Making It Real. Human Rights-Centered Technology in Emergency Responses. Spyware Industry, Human Rights, and the Internet Ecosystem. Is Encryption a Human Right? Voices of Human Rights Actors. And finally, DNS Abuse: Where Are We and Where Do We Want To Be?
Those are the 15 slots that we assign.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you very much.
Anyone interested in clarifications? Questions?
>>MAARIT PALOVIRTA: Just one note. Maarit Palovirta for the record. We had one -- in the connectivity section, we had one workshop called -- it was number 291, Implications of a New International Cybercrime Treaty, which I think we felt that didn't belong to our bucket, and we had all -- we admitted that we had rated it a little bit lower not because it was a bad proposal but simply because it didn't fit with the theme.
So maybe it would be worth -- It seemed like a, I just had another look, interesting proposal. It would be maybe worth having a look if it's something for this group number three to consider.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Any other questions?
>> TEREZA HOREJSOVA: I may jump in on this point, if okay?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yeah, go ahead.
>> TEREZA HOREJSOVA: Thank you.
Maarit. Thanks for that. Also in our group that we have some proposals that we didn't consider, it might be suited for other ones. But on your question, you mention that you ranked this proposal, which seems to be fitting to our basket, indeed, quite low. Did you mark it low because you felt it didn't belong to your basket or was it not a particularly strong proposal?
If the latter, our basket was rather competitive, so, you know, then not sure if we can still squeeze it in. But if it was a super strong proposal, we can revisit, of course.
>>MAARIT PALOVIRTA: I can only talk to myself, but I felt it didn't belong to the connectivity theme. That's why I didn't even have a proper look at it. But it seems, having had another look at it, that it's an interesting angle, but I don't want to push, of course. It's up for you to -- up for you to consider if you still want to revisit or not.
>>TEREZA HOREJSOVA: I cannot speak for the whole group but I will take it into account if the evaluation of this proposal across your group was really, really strong.
I don't know what Roberto, others, Cherie, Alan, think about this.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Adam?
>>ADAM PEAKE: Thank you. Adam.
I think when we were -- one of the questions we were asked in the assessment when we were assessing these was relevance to the theme. And this is problematic because if you felt something was not relevant to the theme because it may have been misplaced in that batch, then of course it was going to get marked down.
If you evaluated it thinking -- with the thought in mind, oh, this isn't relevant to the batch it's been given; therefore, I will not mark it. You see what I mean? You have a bit of a dilemma there. On the one hand you have been asked to mark something down because it's not relevant to the theme particularly, but if it's been misplaced then it gets marked down by mistake.
So I think we're getting into a bit of a kind of worms here, actually.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: I understand the potential problem. I think that may have happened in one or two cases, but I don't think it's an endemic problem. And in those particular cases people feel very strongly, this is the opportunity to right now to let's do something about it.
From my perspective, what I've heard so far is we have a really vibrant set of content deliverables coming our way. That is going to make this a great IGF, regardless of what we do with these outliers.
So my personal preference is to get through the things we're definitive about so we know that these -- you know, that this is at ground zero, and then that will provide some opportunity for a little bit of massaging around the edges if the groups later feel that that is warranted.
And you sir.
>>ALHAGIE MBOW: Actually, I think Adam is right. Really, we just thought it doesn't actually belong too much to our group. That's why we didn't really look too much into it. So we just thought maybe we're going to mark it, and then bring it back on the table. Sort of the group that's actually responsible can take a look at it if there's a need.
But again, if you look at the global score, it was really ranked really high, about 4.2, and the standard deviation also was about 0.35, which is also very high.
But nonetheless, we have not really looked deep into it. So we just thought we're going to forward it to the other group for them to look at it if there's a need for them to squeeze.
But looking at the comment section also, it seems they have some issues of diversity and policy questions when you look at the other side. Maybe you can also take a look at that one. Yeah.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Other concerns? Commentary? Questions?
If not, then it's time for number four. Group number four: Data and Internet fragmentation.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Okay. Thank you, Chair. Chris Buckridge for the record.
So I'll cover the Internet fragmentation ones, and my colleague Joyce will discuss the data ones.
So -- sorry. Just bring this up here.
So the workshops that we selected for avoiding Internet fragmentation. First one is number 266, Internet Fragmentation and Sovereignty in the Global South. The second is number 342, Protecting the Global Internet in an Age of Economic Sanctions. Number three is number 335, Fragmented Reality: New Horizons of Digital Distrust. Next, number 475, Balancing Digital Sovereignty and the Splinternet. The next is number 66, Reassessing Government Role in Internet Governance: How to Embrace the Leviathan. The next is number 494, Cutting Ties, Citizens Caught Between Conflict and Tech. Next is number 442: Towards a resilient Internet, Cyber Diplomacy 2.0. Number 458, Do Diverging Platform Regulations Risk an Open internet? Number 405, Splintering from the Core Up: Fragmentation and Standards. And then number 369, Harmonizing Online Safety Regulation.
And then number 332, as Amrita noted earlier and Adam was discussing, we had had Leapfrogging Internet Technology Role in Post-Pandemic Era in our bucket. I think really, we thought it made more sense in that other bucket for AI and emerging technologies. And I believe, yeah, the secretariat has accounted for that in their compilation of the list.
So, yeah, happy to take any questions on those selections.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes, sir.
>>ADAM PEAKE: Sorry. Adam. 332, it scored 3.99 which is quite low. Are you recommending that we give it full consideration? I mean, typically that would be one that -- just looking at the scores, not looking at the comments, that would be one that would not go forward. Are you asking us to look at it? What are you suggesting, please?
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Our discussion of it was looking at the standard deviation it's quite high. It's over one. So following Roberto's advice there, we gave it a second look.
I think we -- yeah, that didn't necessarily disagree that it had some room for improvement, but we thought it was an interesting idea and concept that was worth looking at, but didn't make sense in ours.
So I think having thought this is something we would give a second look to, we then also thought but not in this group. And so it was more pushing it to the other group. If the other group wants to have a look and decides this is not strong enough to sit in with the rest of that bucket's selections, that's absolutely fine. I think we happily, yeah, push that decision off to them.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: To con- -- Amrita for the record. To continue with what Adam has said, while it said that this project -- this proposal talks about using technology, it's not actually talking about hard-core technology and emerging technologies that we have been looking for, right? Add them in our proposal. So that's a question to the group. Do we want to, kind of?
Anyone from the group, is it a green, an orange, or a yellow? Group two.
>>ADAM PEAKE: Can we take it away and come back to you? Because I don't think it's really fair to do it live. I'm reading the comments now, but it -- Can we put it on hold? Sort of orange? Would that be fair?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: From my perspective, I think we can put it into the orange bucket. But at the same time, my personal preference is that the orange bucket disappears because really we want to concentrate on doing a great job of the greens. And putting our resources behind a great job of the greens. That's always difficult to say no to work that's been done and ideas, but my personal preference, and this is up to you guys in the groups, is that the orange buckets effectively go away. And that would, as a matter of course, affect this particular proposal, right? We would not take it any further.
I think that's a structured and principled way to do it, but I defer in part to the group.
>> AMADO ESPINOSA: As far as it is in the orange basket and it is going to disappear, I think we can decline at this point to double-check on the proposal.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Sorry, you decline to make the orange bucket go away or --
>> AMADO ESPINOSA: No. I decline to -- to double-check on the proposal. Then we are pretty much done with the proposals that we have already introduced to the group.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Again, from my perspective, I think we've done an excellent job of creating an excellent set of lists across the themes, and I think there's plenty of work to do to implement all of those sessions as we've discussed. I just want to make sure that any -- any session that people feel strongly about that is not in the -- in the green list, there's an opportunity to have that discussion with colleagues. At the same time, what I want to do is make sure that we are locked on the decisions we make today rather than perpetuate them out week after week.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Yeah, and just to reiterate from our perspective, I think the view of our group was absolutely that move this to the other group, and it has to compete on its own merits at that point. And if that group feels they have a strong slate already, then I think it's fine to say this one, which also didn't rank so highly in our listing but just seemed like an interesting topic, but it did. As you say, happy to -- for that group to sort of say we have our strong selection and let's move on here. And I absolutely agree, it's better that we lock this away quickly rather than drag things out.
>>ADAM PEAKE: I sent an email to our subgroup with a comment and the comments from the other group about the thing. So if take a quick look at your email, fellow group two people, we can have a look while we're doing other things and reach a decision.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Aside from this overhanging decision, are there others that people want to -- feel strongly about that they want to talk about before we make a decision that ends the discussion?
So let's take 10, 15 minutes for this group to make a decision on this -- on this issue. Let's see. It is -- I don't have a clock.
>> JOYCE CHEN: This is Joyce speaking.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yeah, Joyce, go ahead.
>> CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Chair, we do still have the data governance ones.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yeah, I know.
Joyce, go ahead.
>>JOYCE CHEN: No, It's just to say are we going with the data governance ones first or go for the discussion first?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: I was going to go for the discussion while we're in it, so partly to put pressure on the organization to help us make a decision. So I think the people who are not involved can use this as a water break, coffee break. Give us ten minutes, and we'll come back with a decision on this issue, and that will clear three out of the four. And then we'll go into the last group.
[ Break ]
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: I think our little break time is just about up. Do you need any extra time? Anybody need more time?
Can we come back together now?
Does anybody need any extra time?
So what is the decision that you have made? Group two.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: So group two has decided to stick to what we had earlier decided upon and not add any more sessions.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you very much.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Workshops.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: And group one?
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: For group one, we only have 25. We do not have any additional proposals.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: For group three, did anybody want to make any changes in group three before we go to group four? Great. I love it when movement happens.
Okay. Let's go to group four. Joyce, I think you were waiting online.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Thanks, Paul. And hello, everyone. I guess good morning to all of you in Geneva. I'm Joyce Chen, MAG member for the record.
So our theme is governing data and protecting privacy. And as we discussed, these are our accepted proposals. So just give me a second to draw up the list.
I can't seem to find it suddenly. Okay.
The first one is number 254, Trustworthy Data Flows, Building Towards Common Principles.
Next is number 63, The Impact Of Digital Citizenship on Statelessness.
Number 269, Data Privacy Gap, The Global South Youth Perspective.
Number 69, Governing Cross-border Data Flows, Trade Agreements and Limits.
Number 393, Protect the Digital Rights and Data Security for the Elderly.
Number 244, Ethical and Legal Boundaries for OSINT Practices.
Number 261, Perils and Opportunities of Data Integration for Security.
Number 160, Connectivity and Digital Rights, a View from the Global South.
Number 403, Cross-border Data Sharing for Public Safety.
Number 309, Access to Remedies in Safeguarding Rights to Privacy and Data.
Number 5 --
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Hey, Joyce. Joyce, can you hold up for a second? I just noticed the transcript is not transcribing.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Ah, sorry. Yeah, okay.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: And we haven't gotten any of your commentary on the transcript.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Right. Okay.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So if somebody in the secretariat could solve our technical problem.
>> Excuse me, Chairman. It is transcribing but it's not being presented on the Webex.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Ah. I think Luis has to click on scroll for the transcript.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. Problem solved. Keep going. Go ahead.
>>JOYCE CHEN: No worries. Where was I? Okay. Got it.
Number 528, Privacy in Public, Making Digital Infrastructure Accountable.
Number 471, Addressing Children's Privacy and Ed Tech Apps.
Number 282, Protection of Personal Data in eGovernment Projects.
And these are the data governance (indiscernible).
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Is there anyone in the room here who would like to have additional explanation, clarification, concerns? This is the time.
I don't see any requests from the floor, so I'm taking this as there's no concerns with the selections of this group.
So those selections will be considered final. Going once. Going twice. I believe we have completed all of our selections across all four groups.
Anyone disagrees with that? First of all, give yourselves a round of congratulations.
[ Applause ]
Thank you very much for your participation and quality reviewing.
So we're ahead of the agenda.
Excuse me for my voice which doesn't want to seem to want to talk today.
But we have several opportunities now to advance the agenda forward just a little bit. Before we go on to the main sessions, I'd like to have just a little bit of an opportunity for people to talk about this process up to this point and capture for the future immediate feedback about how we've run the process of this selection over the last two days.
So the floor is open. Excuse me. The floor is open for the next 15 minutes or so to capture your feedback on how this conference is running so far.
Don't everybody jump at once.
>>ROSALIND KENNYBIRCH: Hello, thank you. Ros KennyBirch, observer from the U.K.
I just wanted to thank the MAG for all their hard work this week. As an observer, it was just great to see how much consideration was given to all of the proposals and the process. So many thanks for that.
I wanted to ask a question about the MAG's next steps, so plans for a next meeting, just to keep up to date in the run up to IGF. So thanks very much, everyone.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: And thank you. Thanks for participating.
>>ADAM PEAKE: I bet you weren't expecting me to say anything. But anyway, it's Adam.
So reviewing how we got here --
[ Laughter ]
I think I would start with emphasizing to the MAG as it forms next year that there will be a period probably from when workshops are received, you know, there is a period of about a month where the MAG really does have to do its core work, which is this process of evaluation. So I would make it very clear to all new MAG members next year, including anybody who's on the Future Terms, that this is as mandatory as you can be with a voluntary group, that it's an expectation that you have to do a lot of work.
I think there's a problem that we've slipped dates, which meant we've not had enough time really before this meeting to evaluate. So trying to avoid the slippage of dates and reminding people that this is really the core task of what the MAG does. So that's the first thing for process.
The second is that I think the forms have sort of -- they've evolved over time. I've only been a MAG member -- this is my second term, but you've seen them evolve over time. And you sort of see layering of good idea on top of good idea. And I think they're beginning to become cumbersome with all those good ideas. So I would review the form for input and make it just clear.
You know, people have written two or three pages sometimes of description. And the amount of work that's gone into that is great. But sometimes that language is not clear. You're jumping up and down trying to find out where the speakers are. There are three speakers mentioned at the top of the page. And then there's other speakers mentioned in the content of the work and et cetera, et cetera. It really needs to be clarified so that when we read -- you know, we should be reading more than 50 or 60. We should be trying to have the ability to get through more. But we can't because the forms are too difficult really. Just takes so much time.
If we clarified the forms with what do we need to know, we need speakers, all your speakers in one place, who are they. Are they going to be onsite? Are they going to be online?
We need to know -- they should be confirmed. I mean, there's no excuse for not confirming a speaker if the opportunity is to be online four months later. So that's pretty clear.
You need a description of what it is. And let's put a word limit on that description.
Policy questions, what are they? One, two, three. Give it a box where you have to go one, two, three or write "not applicable."
What's your outcome? What are you going to do? What are we going to learn from that? So we can plan that.
Other conferences do it. It's not hard. But we really need to revamp that form so it's easier for people to complete and the result is clear because that will make evaluations clearer so our process now will be easier to do. We'll be able to do more, see more of what's on the agenda. So I think that's probably the main process thing that I think would be really important.
It's getting things -- making sure that the MAG is aware that this is their priority. I think it is, if people agree. Making sure that we don't slip time lines. Whatever it is, we've got to stick to them. And making it easier for people to complete the forms because there's clarity. And then easier for us to read and assess them because there's clarity.
And that's what I think we need to think about it. Shouldn't be too hard.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Bruna. And then Chris.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Thank you, Paul.
Just to second the comment as well, because I think when we analyze the proposals, there is often the case that Adam was mentioning, like, the two lists of panelists. You would either have a list of three people and then later on you would have comments on who is attending and who is not attending. And I'm looking at one of those.
So I think we should be slightly more objective on whether or not, like, all of them that are listed are the ones confirmed and we're only allowing for that because there were a lot of cases where the lists were different.
And something that also sounded a little misleading or confusing to me while going through the proposals is the expected outcomes, description, and targets. They all kind of mixed -- get mixed depending on who's writing the proposal.
And when you look at the expected outcomes, it was often the case, at least in my evaluation, that some people didn't really focus on having outcomes that were directed towards the IGF community. They were all, like, kind of like more self-oriented in terms of the work or, like, outreaching for their reports or anything of the sort.
So it would be nice for us as well to kind of like help direct the community towards more general outcomes that could be useful for the IGF in the future and so on.
So, yeah, that would be my comment. Thank you.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Thanks. Chris here. Seconding all of what Adam and Bruna have said.
Just thinking practically a little bit about what that might mean, I mean, now is the moment when we've all been through this process and we have fresh in mind what worked, what didn't work. I mean, Adam had a lot of really good, specific ideas.
So I'm looking across the table here at Roberto. We obviously came together as that working group to develop the form and to evolve the form earlier this year, so I think March, April.
I wonder if it would be useful for us to reconvene that working group in the coming month or so and sort of start developing the form for next year based on our immediate recollections and understanding of what worked, what didn't work. I think there will be need for, you know, tweaking in March or April next year once we have the next thing.
But it also means that we're going to be able to draw more consistently, I hope, on the experiences of MAG members who won't be on the MAG next year and also we're not necessarily relying on people who are coming in new without that experience as well.
So, yeah, I think if we can move quickly on this, that would be a way to do ourselves a favor for next year.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Joyce.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Thanks, Paul.
A few comments I think the individual session forms from which we were reading all the different proposals really needs to be improved. Just very small things, like, there are basically no paragraphs. So if you had a proposal with a few hundreds of words, it's like reading a whole wall of text. And the readability is just so low. It's very difficult to understand.
And I think also probably it was not submitted that way; but when it goes into the system, it all comes out as a huge chunk. So that really just doesn't help very much. So I think we could look into that.
Another thing was -- and I had made this comment as well yesterday -- that, you know, in the form itself we do ask, you know, to have people put down what they plan in terms of the hybrid format. And if you look at the proposals, there isn't honestly really that much deviation around how certain online tools are being used. There's only that many Miro boards or Lucidspark or some other online tool that can be used to facilitate the hybrid format.
And so scoring for that was just sort of -- either people didn't put a plan in or it was all the same plan. I think what I would really like to see is how people are planning to use those tools to actually engage participants.
Some of the good proposals did put down the tools that they were using and how they were planning to use it, so what kinds of questions that they were planning to engage the audience with and tying it into the outcomes.
But most, I think, just sort of gloss over it. That is sort of a wasted -- I mean -- a wasted opportunity to learn how session organizers are planning to engage the audience.
I think that section needs to be tweaked so that it focuses less on what is the hybrid format and more on what is the audience engagement or interaction approach, including the hybrid format.
So I'd like to sort of change the emphasis around, that the hybrid format should just be helping with improving engagement and not the other way around. Thanks.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
And moving to my left, going down.
>>TALANT SULTANOV: Thanks so much, Chair. Talant Sultanov.
In one of the forms I have filled out in the past, there was a request to summarize your proposal as a tweet. Maybe it was in the Asia-Pacific IGF, I'm not sure. Joyce can correct me.
I thought from one hand maybe to steal an idea from the other hand, I think it has some benefits for the proposers. It disciplines them to summarize, if it's a huge text, your idea in very few words.
For the readers, we will understand immediately what the proposal is about because sometimes when you read some of the proposals, you try to get the idea what people are trying to accomplish.
And, finally, the secretariat communications people probably will be very grateful that there will be material for the publications in the future. So that could be an interesting idea. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Thank you very much, Paul.
I would like to make some comments about the process. If you remember in -- I think it was, our last virtual meeting, I alerted about the way that the process was changing regarding the first stage of evaluation. And after we started the process, I just had a communication -- internal communication with you, Paul, and the secretariat, saying that, indeed, as I was alerting, the process was changing in that way. It was different because of the meeting we have. In the meeting we have, even Chengetai actually gave me the reason, but actually the process was changed.
What I would suggest -- and this goes in line with Chris' suggest -- it's important for us to meet very soon. But I would anyway like to comment about this -- the need for this change.
In the first stage, it's really important for all of us to be randomly assigned as we did, but for all the themes, not for a particular themes. That's very important. If you are going to work with four groups or five groups or three groups, every one of us needs to be assigned randomly no matter what theme we are evaluating in that first stage.
In the second stage, or third, the one that we are starting, it's, of course, valuable to be assigned to a group in which we are related in terms of expertise because now I was involved in the security area, which is not my particular area of expertise. I know -- like, I will say -- a people that is involved in different aspects, but not as an expert. And it's really important because that's the value when we are involved in this part of the evaluation.
But, again, it's really difficult to ask the MAG members to select by themselves just a group, just a theme, because in some cases, we could be facing maybe an imbalance situation, meaning that many would like to work maybe, like, in access and just a few in fragmentation. And then again it would provide maybe an imbalanced situation. So what can we do about it?
This is a suggestion I would like to consider. Of course, I'm going to repeat this once we are in the group, in our meeting in the future.
But what we can do as an incentive is to -- once we are in the stage of evaluating the individual proposals -- I mean, the evaluation stage, the first that ends this process -- the first member that ends this process could allow to select which one of the themes would like to be involved with. In that way, we can have a balanced number of members for each group of the theme evaluation, I mean, or the evaluation by themes. And, of course, this is an incentive because if you went before, then you will have the chance to select which one is of your preference. And, of course, the others will have to deal with the remaining slots in the groups that we have.
So that's a suggestion I would like to make for the future. I think it's going to help a lot into the process.
Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Marielza.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Thank you, Paul. Marielza Oliveira for the record, UNESCO.
I am astounded. This is a really fantastic process, and I really appreciate all the work that has been doing. I have a first-hand observer opportunity to see it happen. I would like to second what Adam said and add some elements to it.
One of the things that is striking me about this process, that it's a very technical process but not a human-centered process of selection.
And I think that there are so many things that we need to be concerned with on the Internet that perhaps didn't make it into a proposal that we should be concerned with. Why are these proposals not coming? And/or what do we do when topics do not appear?
One topic that I care deeply about, harassment online. And I don't see anything about it. 73% of women journalists are harassed online, and 20% of those are actually harassed in real life because they are doc speakers.
Maria Ressa, when we did the analysis about the amount of hate that she gets, she got 400,000 pieces of hate in two months. This is an astounding thing.
Last year, 251 climate activists were killed. Last year we had a surge of hate against educators because they were following mask mandates in schools to save students' lives. And there's nothing on any of the proposals that came through. And we need to reflect on what is missing as well, because those are topics that we should be putting up front if we want to be a voice for the Internet. That really raises all the issues that need to be raised and send a message, a policy message.
So in complement to the suggestions that Adam made in relation to revamping of the form, the form is about the proposals that make it through. But I think that the first thing that should be asked about proposals are: What is the issue, the Internet issue you are dealing with, why, and what is the message you're going to be sending out of what the discussions are and to whom, where this policy question lands to be pursued? Otherwise, it's just a great discussion and useful, and we learn a lot about it but nothing gets done after that. So what is going to be done to pursue the discussions, outcomes, and bring it forward?
The other thing that strikes me as interesting is that proposals are ranked for long-time proponents alongside newcomers. If we want new voices, even if they are ranked lower, we need to give them a chance to be ranked up there. And perhaps you have to have a track that are newcomers exactly to have people who are not used to making these proposals and are not really conversant with the protocols of the IGF and everything to actually put their voice out. There and we need to nurture these groups in order for them to actually learn how to be part of this community and put their, you know, messages out there as well.
So those are the things that I -- that I would like to say, you know. Make it less of a technical process. Make it a more human-centered process, just like the Internet we want to have, in which you look at what are the human consequences of some of the discussions that we're having here and what do we want to see changed, you know, in order for it to be a meaningful discussion.
And just to finalize, this year, it's an incomparable opportunity for us to really make a contribution to the Global Digital Compact, but not to the -- only to the Global Digital Compact. Don't forget that Our Common Agenda has a series of other elements in which digital, you know, content and policy would be meaningful to have. Just for example, there is an item specifically on Internet shutdowns. I didn't see any discussion on us, you know, wading into these other items of Our Common Agenda, and we should. Those are opportunities to send a message out there.
And in the Common Agenda, in the Global Digital Compact itself, you should reflect on all the points across, the entry points on which you can wade in, not just stay in with just the, oh, we can send the message after the IGF, you know, to -- you know, to add on to the discussions, but what are the set, from top to bottom, of entry points that you could take advantage of in order to really make this human-centered change happen.
So I'll stop here; otherwise, I'll just climb on my soapbox and keep going.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you very much. Mohamed and then Wout and then Chris.
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Thank you, Mr. Chair. I'm very -- I'm positively surprised by the different intervention because I will recall that most of us, as MAG member, as workshop proposal evaluator, do not have the same level of speaking, understanding. And I think at this stage, if we -- we take the opportunity to review, to think about the form, it will be limited, the scope. I think that's -- Roberto talk about the process. If we like to have a lot of diversity in term of workshop proposal submission, as new idea, as capturing the reality, because IGF once again is a forum, is a police that we should give the opportunity to all of people independently of where they come, what they speak, to come and say something. What they face day after day in their reality.
So I think if we have an opportunity to review the process, let's pay attention on the first beginning of the process, thematic proposal, because if we have five thematics chosen by a limited group of stakeholder, it's on those thematic that workshop will be selected, it's on the thematic that the agenda will be builded.
So I think we need to pay attention on all those years we did things like we were doing till now and how we can give chance to do it, to do them in another way. And if we'd like to be more inclusive, I think the best way to guarantee a sustainability of Internet is to give the plus of diversity. If we don't give any chance to those who never submitted a workshop, we will continue to select those who are two -- 20 in the past on experiencing workshop.
I think that's a good way, a good possibility will be to continue to improve the work we are doing with NRIs, because NRIs are, in my point of view, the only link we have with local and regional activities. Otherwise, people who submitted individually workshop proposal are those who are experienced.
So we -- In Africa, I remember while we encourage people to come and submit something, we do it at regional level. And I think that's if the IGF locally, regionally do not have the possibility to echo what has experience at local level, because what we're doing here come from individual proposal. NRI will have the opportunity to do some activities, but the main -- I can say the main agenda with the workshop proposal come from individual who are experienced to draft and send a proposal.
I think that's -- We are in the Internet, and there is a lot of possibility. You can't imagine all of us who are not dedicated hundred percent on MAG activities. I don't know for others. Maybe the secretariat. But if we have to go working, we have to bring 20 pages of PDF part of proposal, we have to be connected. Read four pages, select, pick lot and come back. It's really, really painful. And I think we have to take advantage of the technology to facilitate our evaluation process but also how people might submit their ideas, even if they don't speak English. Why not?
So I think that if we have the opportunity to review the form, document on the form, let's take a good way on all processes, because that's the way we can improve things.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>WOUT DE NATRIS: Yes. Good morning, and thank you, Paul.
First I'd like to make compliment to the very well-working process you have been through today. If you compare that to years ago, then all the in-fighting and all the things that went around the process certainly weren't here today, so my congratulations to that.
And I would like to ask for this request. I'll give two reasons for it. We saw yesterday the slides with all the divisions of the proposal. And what worried me a bit is that 61% came out of civil society, so where are all the other stakeholder communities? Where have they gone?
And what is the division today after you've made your selection? Has it become better or has it become even worse? I think that that could be a telltale sign to where other communities are going to.
And if that is the case that they are moving elsewhere, then is it an idea to do some sort of a survey and see if we can find out why people are moving elsewhere and not -- not submitting proposals anymore? And that could help in the future the diversity of the proposals, in my opinion.
I'll give two reasons for this question. The first one I just gave on the other stakeholders, and I've been hearing for years from, for example, the technical community, we don't have anything to do at the IGF anymore because there are no more topics for us. So they are moving away and not coming back to the IGF.
The other reason is that because of the dynamic coalition that I'm the coordinator of, I've moved into several -- all sorts of processes in the U.N. and around the U.N. to promote the dynamic coalition on Internet standards. And what I have been noticing is that everybody is clamoring there for multistakeholder processes. And there was even a former host country saying we need something to discuss Internet governance in this meeting. And then I brought in but we have the Internet Governance Forum, and everybody reigned silence. And then there was a report submitted to the U.N. where the Internet Governance Forum was not mentioned until I made a specific intervention as the only one present saying we have the Internet Governance Forum. And that was the moment it was added to the final report.
And I think that is so telling. If a former host country is asking for somewhere to discuss Internet governance, then something is going wrong. And I've made a mention of that to the secretariat, because I thought this was something that needed an intervention.
But from there, I think that if you see all these processes, and Paul mentioned them, and they all are asking for multistakeholder process, then the IGF is moving towards irrelevance, where Paul was mentioning yesterday. And I think that's very concerning because it also reflected from the...
So my suggestion would be, and then I come back to the proposal that I made on the first day on what is all the work that is facing us and what are we going to do. And Paul's comment that are the selections of workshops reflecting the topics which are being asked to the IGF to reference, that is something that I can't judge because I don't know the proposals and I will not go into that. That is something that you, as the MAG, should judge.
But if we want to have, as an IGF community, strong answers to the processes that are being asked for us, which we have an extended deadline of for in December, we will have to prepare and not let it come to one single general session, main session where probably the usual suspects will be telling the usual story. We will want to hear from others. And that's the only way we can have a very broad and comprehensive response to the questions that are being asked.
So I think that that is, for me, a matter of grave concern, and I hope that you are able to address this and to come up with a process that will give the IGF the promises -- promise it deserves, because we are the multistakeholder process. But we have to make sure that we remain the multistakeholder process, and that will take a lot of hard work.
Sorry for this serious intervention but it's something I feel very, very strongly about, as you can hear. So thank you for the opportunity, Paul.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Thanks, Paul. I wanted to react to just a few things that were brought up by the previous speakers, one of which was talking about the need to incorporate, you know, new commerce and more new voices into the IGF and into the sessions.
I'm a bit curious, and I think this is a topic that is worth the MAG having a deeper discussion into at some point.
I looked at the stats again for the sessions received, submitted, and it seems that about almost half, so 46% of the session organizers are actually first-time organizers.
And so I'm wondering what exactly is the issue? Is it that we are not seeing enough new topics in the sessions that are being submitted? Is it the issue that we are not seeing enough new speakers that are, you know, being put forward in the proposals? Because we keep seeing the same names, the same veterans and experts coming up. So what exactly is the issue? Because, you know, if you're just looking at the organizers themselves, almost half of them are newcomers.
And so I think it's hard to say that we haven't been inclusive of, you know, new voices, but we definitely can do more. And without examining this issue to understand where the problem is, I don't think we will be able to deal with it effectively.
The other thing that I wanted to echo was what Wout was saying; you know, that have we actually looked at the diversity of perspectives in all the sessions that have been accepted? And so I'm curious to know from the accepted list of 75 or 70-something proposals that we have done in the past two days, is there going to be an additional analysis of all the different diversity markers? So, you know, have we met the geographic diversity, gender balance, stakeholder balance? And then from there, would we then go into a different -- another review to make -- in case there was anything that was very, very, you know, off skew? That's one question, I guess, I have.
And I think a comment that I also wanted to make was over the years, the technical community have found it increasingly difficult to get, you know, sessions into the IGF.
And a lot of times -- and I have seen from the supporting comments that evaluators have made, the MAG have made, for those sessions and proposals is that this proposal is too technical. I always see a lot of comments: too technical.
So I wonder if the issue is that people aren't able to relate to issues because it's at a level -- it's technical enough that, you know, somebody who is nontechnical is able to understand exactly what is being discussed or is it a lack of sort of interest in technical topics?
And so I think it's not been very welcoming of the technical community to have their proposals accepted into the IGF. It's just becoming very difficult. That's my observation. And if you look at the statistics, it also shows that, you know, there aren't many technical proposals that have gotten in.
The other thing is that, at least for our a group, we did try to pull in as many proposals that were submitted by government representatives or that had government speakers in those sessions, just to sort of have that greater diversity in the sessions. And so I'd like to urge the MAG, perhaps next year and in future, to pay more attention to those other minor representatives -- minority representatives that typically, you know, have difficulty having their sessions noticed. And just put more attention to them and give them more opportunities.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. And I now have Amrita.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Thank you. Amrita for the record.
Well, I had a few points to make, but I echo what Joyce mentioned. And just to add when we were looking at diversity, we were conscious when balancing the quality of sessions to see that proposers who were proposing for the first time, if there was merit in the proposal, even if it was not, you know, very well written English, because English is not a language for most of us, was actually selected or given some kind of more merit -- weighted, you know, than the seasoned supporters. I think that was something that the working group had proposed to everyone to kind of balance.
Balancing speakers is also important because we don't want the same speakers in all the sessions. Gender issues, especially gender-based violence, are important. We have the Best Practice - Gender, which is working on this issue. For example, in our group, we had something which was on AI and African women, which did speak about gender-based violence against women and how AI assists it. So though the title of the session may look something else, but it did discuss. There were certain sessions.
And I think the sessions on fragmentation did discuss shutdowns to some extent.
So these are there, but they are not in the high -- not highlighted, I would say.
And coming back to certain feedbacks which we perhaps may want to look at as the MAG, one is the tool to submit a workshop proposal should be easy for the proposer. I still think at times it's complicated because -- and easy to use. There should not be issues or glitches. There were a few proposers who actually reached out to me, I reached out to Anja and Luis because they were having issues.
Similarly for us, when we were evaluating, it was slightly difficult, because we were seeing, as Adam mentioned, proposer ABC, or these are the speakers, but then we see different names. So it becomes very difficult for us while evaluating when we are evaluating to actually grasp the knowledge, as Joyce had mentioned, the paragraphs were missing. It becomes very difficult. So perhaps we want to look at how we can review the forms and make it more user friendly and easy to use.
Another thing which perhaps we as a MAG could do is, you know, we review it and share it with the working group that does the existing form provide adequate information which we need to make the evaluations we want to do, and what are -- which are the questions or stages that we feel corrections need to be made in the form. And then summarize these learnings and share it with the next MAG or the next working group, because all of us may not be there in the working group, but at least if we shared the learnings and these -- you know, the strong points which needs to be corrected. Because it's an ever-changing process. We learn and we modify things. Perhaps that would be good.
And another thing which we could not do this time is perhaps if we can -- you know, when the workshop submission time comes or before we announce it, if we could have some capacity building or some information given in the website, in easy format, a presentation or something on how they can make their submissions more effective, perhaps that may help so people don't write lengthy two or three pages things, and make it succinct for them and us also to review.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Bruna and then Chris.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Bruna and then Chris.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Thank you, Paul. Just reacting to some points as well, I think looking at the diversity discussions and the role it plays on the forms, I think it's safe to say, or possible to say, that tokenization is still an issue on panel submission. Meaning that in a lot of cases you would have somebody, like, from the Global South or somebody from Africa or somebody -- or somebody like a woman or somebody from the LGBTQY+ community being listed as a speakers and not really being part of the discussion, just for the kind of diversity metrics kind of things.
So when I was assessing my workshops, I really did look at diversity kind of like this more -- in a more holistic approach as well, because it shouldn't be only an issue around stakeholder, regional, or gender but also on the content of the session. And I mean, like, what is this session bringing as a new discussion? Is this session really just reproducing something that was done before?
And what is the use of us listening to the same experts that have been doing the same discussion at the IGF for 10, 15 years? So I think maybe just as a comment, diversity should be taken as a more -- taken into as a more kind of holistic thing instead of just, like, a very objective metric because it goes beyond. And that's just one thing.
And, also, when we see -- we always hear this comment about how civil society is still one of the main stakeholders that submit the sessions and so on. But we also need to be worried that a lot of the other stakeholders ask civil society, they ask the youth to submit the sessions. This has happened to me and a lot of people in this community because they know that this is what is going to make the workshop, making to the metrics, if it has a good content.
So, I mean, just another point that, like, diversity is not as objective as we seem to see.
I agree with Amrita's comments on how we can frame the overarching themes or do some better capacity-building work into this. Because it was really often the case, and I also agree also with UNESCO's points, that we could have done a better job in advertising for the call and explaining to people it's not just AI, it's emerging technologies, or the GDC is just one of the things that we're trying to have a conversation throughout this call.
And last, but not least, just a question maybe to Roberto, as well. Would it be worth us having the assignment of random workshops instead of the groups? Because, like, just based on our expertise generally, if you work on human rights, then you didn't evaluate human rights. But then you would be able to, as you were saying, bring the input on who are the actual experts on these or just to be able to kind of like help these groups.
So I'm just wondering whether or not we could consider the random assignment and also to have a mechanism to rebalance the cases where we excuse ourselves from the evaluation, that this was my case.
I excused myself from evaluating four workshops because, like, I either worked on the project or knew the people or for different reasons. But then should be a mechanism for redistributing or for me to be able to evaluate four more instead of throwing this work away or just taking the evaluations away.
Just a few confusing points in all of the process. And thank you.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Thanks. Chris here. I will add my list of confusing points in response to a lot of what has been said.
I think there's some -- yeah, some really useful insights coming in here. Yeah, like Bruna, I'm just going to respond to a few of them in a somewhat random way.
I think, yeah, going back to Marielza's point, I think the human-centered process is something we really do need to think about. And all through Bruna's point, simplifying the form, making sure the form is clear and easy to do is absolutely a baseline for, I think, encouraging more people to do it. And hopefully, that's what we can start to do in that working group shortly.
I think also -- again, Bruna got the jump on me in talking about the diversity issue and the complexity that we see there.
I think it's interesting to be talking about the -- whether it's all proposers who have proposed many things before or they're new newcomers proposing because as a MAG, we didn't see who the proposer was so that wouldn't have a had an impact there.
What we do see, though, is the speakers. And obviously, there are a lot of workshop proposals that use long-time speakers. I think the challenge there -- we discussed this a lot in relation to the Internet fragmentation proposals as we discussed yesterday. We saw a lot of the same old names there that people are putting down.
That's not the fault of those people who -- those speakers who have been listed many times. It's also kind of not the fault of the individual proposers because, I think, if you're an individual making a proposal, you want it to seem as strong as possible. You want it to seem sort of very authoritative and drawing on the best and known names in the field so you want to try and include them.
So I'm not sure how we build on that, but we absolutely do need to be finding ways to encourage and facilitate newcomers, particularly at the speaker level into this process.
Again, also going back to Marielza's point about there being opportunities beyond just the Global Digital Compact this year, I think what that really also highlights is that this is a very important opportunity this year for the IGF to demonstrate the kind of practical and impactful output it can have, in this case in the context of the Global Digital Compact, but going forward, for other processes and to sort of indicate to people who have issues that, yes, the IGF is a useful and important venue to bring your concerns, your issues, and to get something out of it rather than just a chance to sort of air views.
And then -- okay, two more points. I think going back to what Karim said, I think, about the NRIs and using those, I think there's something really important there. And I think what we need to do is foster a bit of a culture of making proposals to the IGF. And that's -- the NRIs are a really useful opportunity to do that. I think there are other places to do it.
But we as the MAG need to think about how do we foster that culture. How do we make people think this is a worthwhile thing to invest time in? Even though hopefully it will be a little less time with a more straightforward form.
I think as we make the forms a little more simplified or straightforward, multilingualism will be a more realistic option there. I think we talked a little bit about this in the working group. If we can have a very succinct description of what the proposal is, we already have tools that would allow us to automatically translate and then, hopefully, we can all draw on the collective expertise in different languages that is on the MAG to make sure that we're seeing that. But, yeah, I think forcing everyone to do it in English, if we can find ways to move away from that, that would be wonderful.
And the last point I'm going to make -- and I'm going to steal a little bit of Paul's thunder from later on by mentioning the new terms of reference that he's been working on in his reference. Because I think when -- Marielza, you also talked about we don't see some issues that maybe people feel are very important.
One of the -- I think the first responsibility of the MAG is to identify and promote engagement with emerging Internet governance issues themes and other areas in need of discussion and recommendation. So there is a responsibility on the MAG to make sure that those issues are coming in or to identify if those issues are not there.
I'm not sure what we're doing as MAG currently to that end. So I think that's something that as the MAG, it would be useful for us to think about. And right now we're sort of encouraging people to make proposals. We're evaluating those proposals. We're not having a lot of content-based, substantive discussion of: Are these proposals covering all of the issues that we as the members of the MAG hear about out there or see as important issues and what can we do about that, if that's the case?
Maybe that means going forward, we need to have more meetings as the MAG remote, not necessarily face-to-face, but that aren't just operational focused, that aren't just sort of at the times of, okay, we need to get this done to get the proposal form out, we need to get this done to assess the proposals. But more sort of opportunities to just discuss amongst ourselves what are the issues that we really see as sort of driving the debate this year. What needs to be there? What are we going to have a real problem with if it's not there, and how do we address that?
So maybe that's just sort of food for going forward. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Cherie, you're up.
>>CHERIE LAGAKALI: Thank you, Paul. Cherie, MAG member. I just wanted to add a little bit more confusion from my experiences of what we were evaluating yesterday, and the past few days as well.
Starting with what Chris said about issues, one of the things that when we were evaluating yesterday, we were noticing that some proposals were really lengthy, really well-covered. And some really good topics did not have enough information in them. And something that the MAG could look at was should we have gone back to the proposers, because they would good topics and might be relevant and contact us. And did they have issues working out with what they were supposed to be filling in, the different sections for what was being asked? Those set of proposals got evaluated just because it didn't have enough information altogether.
And then some of the ones -- because, you know, people who might have been other ones that were well-written have proposed in the past so they know how to fill out all this information.
Somebody raised something about diversity. So in the sessions -- proposals that we were looking at, there was a lot of diverse -- the topics were diverse in that they were an all-women panel and a number of the topics were relating to women or issues of women online or safety for women online.
In the past, we complained there's not enough of these topics or there's not enough women on these topics. But now when are having all-women topics or all-women points, we are having to give them lesser points because there's not enough men on those topics. And so how do we work around something like that because this was not an issue in the past? We were not getting enough women topics or women panels, but now we are getting plenty. How do we find a balance of that?
Technical workshops, security was the one that we were looking at. And how do we get a balance between technical -- you know, technical topics, DNS issues, community networks, how many of that is enough to put into this one theme or subtheme of security. And then you have human rights coming under incident responses, topics like that. How do we evaluate those?
And looking at whether this was easy -- you know, sessions were easy to submit or not from being a first-time MAG member, it was really hard for me to be evaluating a lot of these because then the criterias were, like, based on the content that was put in but was not enough content there available because people did not know how to put that in, even though the topics were really good. Thanks.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. And whoever is behind the Identity Wall flag.
>>JUTTA MEIER: Hi, I'm Jutta. I first wanted to share what I was thinking when I woke up today.
So to give you my feedback as someone who has been here for the first time, I felt your openness; and I think this is really important because I have the feeling everyone is really open to every perspective. And to me that's the most important value, to be open. And I want to thank you really from the bottom of my heart for that.
With that, you gave me hope. And I'm convinced we can do this. By meaning "we can do this," I wanted to come back to things that Marielza mentioned.
I really think it's on us to make sure that we create a human-centered digital world as this is becoming our world more and more.
And by taking care of our digital sovereignty, we will also be able to take care of our sovereign digital -- food and energy sovereignty which is needed more than ever all over the world right now.
And, yeah, somehow missing that connection in the proposals -- I just saw the titles, but -- yeah, the importance of having a digital sovereignty that enables our food and energy sovereignty and takes care of our sustainability goals I think is something worth thinking about maybe, which brings me to the next topic.
I'm kind of missing the topic of responsible leadership, so how do we empower and enable decision makers to really know about their power and also our children, about their power they have at their fingertips by being able to work with a computer. So they can destroy or they can really build up the world for us.
So I'm missing kind of these emotional and really, well, the topics that are important to really take care of this future.
And regarding Wout's comment on the 61% of proposals coming from the civil society, I must say I have been working as a digital consultant independently for several years, working with big corporations, helping their executives understand the digital world, knowing what's going on in Silicon Valley, thinking about what could be a European answer, and change the perspectives brought in an independent nonprofit organization because of a really -- yeah, it wasn't a clever decision thinking of me being a single mom from a monetary perspective; but me being a responsible human being, it was the most important decision I ever made.
And I do have the feeling that within civil society and within all these philanthropic organizations behind that are also supporting us, there is a huge, huge awareness on the importance of getting things right in the digital world. So they really see all these topics Marielza was talking about.
And as we know, also, we have manipulated votes and elections and all these things. This was made able because there are digital tools out there. And if you think about the purpose, what Facebook was all about, it was making -- comparing women. So it wasn't a communication platform. It was in the first thing -- in the first step, it was something to compare women on the campus.
So we have to think about the purpose behind all these digital solutions, and this is what I really think the Internet Governance Forum could focus on and, I don't know, in the overall view or the Digital Compact also.
What is the purpose behind? And so to make sure within the processes -- and this is what I saw over the past three days, so the process is perfect. And, also, I see the team has the right -- not perfect, as Chris said. There's always room for improvement. But all of you are very aware about your responsibility here, and this is what brings me to -- so we think by making things malleable, you have to think about the processes, the systems that are coming out, and also the team behind.
So I think these are the three factors that we also have to keep in mind that we should be aware that all of them are really acting responsible.
Yeah, I'm just very enriched and very thankful for being here. Thank you a lot.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. I see two flags on my left. I'm not sure who was first.
Take it away. Mm-hmm .
>> CARINA BIRARDA: Hi, everyone. Carina Birarda from Argentina, technical community, MAG member, for the record.
The evolution that I had made, I would like to comment that I found very interesting those proposal that will follow up the workshop with awareness campaign, report, flier, video, statistic. Perhaps it will be a good opportunity to analyze in future meetings if the propose could -- the proposal form could include a field where it indicate what material the proposal will be generate.
I think it's important as MAG member, let us emphasize that the idea, the proposal and the session does not remain only in the IGF; that they go further and continue after the IGF, generating an impact on society. Thank you, Chair.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. Thanks.
>>PAULA OTEGUY: Thank you, Paul. Paula Oteguy, first time -- first year MAG member. I want to comment about the file for feedback for proposer -- proposal organized. Maybe, in my first experience, a good idea could be to have a guide or an instruction -- instructor in the sense that it's an important feedback that we are giving to the proposers, to the groups or persons that propose a session. And in that my case, I was not so clear about what to say or what to get feedback for them. So I think that could be a good idea to have a structure in that file also to help us and to give a clear message to the proposers.
And then a second -- second thing that I want to say regarding Joyce last comment and about the few technical sessions that we have in the IGF, I think that it is a topic to really evaluate, to really have -- really have to evaluate. Science, the technical aspect makes the Internet work possible. And although there are probably technical issues that are real, many times that people maybe don't understand, we could use some simple language, right? And I say it from my experience, since I work in politics, but in the community, in the technical community, in LACNIC, and it's really possible.
So I believe that technical issues are crucial to understand the success of the Internet, and the community must discuss those issues.
Thank you so much.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>> MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Marielza for the record. Thank you, Paul. UNESCO.
Following up on Chris intervention that says how do we nurture the groups that don't necessarily have the skills and et cetera, perhaps one of the things that could be considered, you know, very practical solution -- suggestion, is the concept of kind of a MAG alumni. You know, after you finish serving, you know, your second term, perhaps, you know, and you have all this knowledge, all this capacity and all these networks, maybe you extend your service for one year, you know, just to help bring, you know, groups up to speed in how they integrate. Because, you know, that's, you know, a waste for us to leave this resource untapped on the table.
So the second point I wanted to make was the showoff of the technical community. This is a multistakeholder forum, so let's not get to solutions; oh, the tech people on one side and the human rights people on the other side. A multistakeholder session will bring the tech and the human rights and they could in the same session. It's not because -- we are looking at how to solve a problem, and how to solve a problem needs to count on technical expertise, on, you know, the human-side expertise so that the solutions and proposals turn out to be feasible.
So the idea of having technical track or this or that to me is a bit of anathema in regards to a multistakeholder process. Otherwise, we're just playing with the word, you know. So let's make it a real multistakeholder process.
You know, I would rank higher, I mean a lot higher, sessions that bring groups together, you know, to have a discussion around the policy issue than actually, you know, disperse sessions that bring a whole lot of (indiscernible), you know, part of society.
And just to throw one other topic, because I mentioned the topic of harassment and so on, but of course other issues were also mentioned by other groups. But in the last -- in two years of COVID, 782 million people joined the Internet. And it's an astounding number that we are all -- you know, it's literally 20% of the Internet, you know, users.
These people didn't join before because they didn't find any value on the Internet. They didn't join before because they didn't have the ability to join. So these 782 million users out there are hanging on by a thread, you know, literally. They are switching from eating to, you know, paying the digital -- you know, the minimum data package and so how do we keep them? What do we do to keep these people around and to give them a real opportunity to benefit from the Internet? You know, those are the things that we should be discussing that are missing on the track.
So if they are not on the sessions, and those are important issues, and the IGF should be looking at that, where do they land? You know, is it in the open, big, you know, opening session? Where do we put these issues that were not -- had not made it in? So that's my question as well.
So thank you.
>>ALHAGIE MBOW: Thank you, Chair. Alhagie, a MAG member. Yes, first I just want to remind ourselves about the thematic areas that were created to actually assist in grouping workshops that are very similar in nature. And for me, when I look at the five thematic areas, I think they have covered most of the of the issues or many of the issues of the Internet today.
Now, if you look at the first one, which actually had 56%, that is dealing with connectivity and human rights. I think you can clearly see that most of these workshops submitted were along these lines. And just to remind my colleague here that workshop 482, which is Internet shutdowns, the diverse risk and challenges and myths, that actually is actually going to address the issues relating to Internet shutdowns.
But now the question becomes what do we do to encourage people to submit workshops that are very relevant to the issues relating to the Internet today? And that's the reason why I said yesterday once we are giving feedback to those people that actually whose workshops were not actually accepted, I think we need to be -- we may need to be a little bit practical to encourage them sort of the next time to be able to submit workshops. Because otherwise, they may just have very important topics, but maybe because of the diversity or maybe because of the outcome was not really very clear, their workshop was put aside. But we have seen workshop idea excellent, especially dealing with gender, that couldn't make it, but because of the fact that there are two or three, it actually has one about diversity or output.
Now, how can we help those people? For me I think there's a need maybe to conduct some kind of capacity building, you know, in like how to write these proposals. You know, writing proposal is not something just everybody is able to do. So I think maybe as part of the thing that we do with the assistance of the secretariat, maybe we can actually set it out there where we can organize a forum where people that are interested in writing workshops or proposals would be trained on what do we really look for when you have a proposal. I think that could actually help, and that could also encourage other people to be able to be more forthcoming instead of just, oh, I did it last year, it didn't work out so let me just forget it. So I think we need to encourage them to come up but better still to help assist them as to what we are reviewing for as MAG members in the evaluation is actually captured.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Bruna.
>>CHRISTINE ARIDA: Thank you, Chair. Christine Arida for the government, but representing the government of Egypt as former host.
So I wanted to come back on the issue of how to enrich workshop proposals, and I think I first would like to thank the MAG for all the effort of selecting the workshops. I'm not -- I do not participate in that as former host, but I see -- I've done that before and I know the tremendous work that it takes.
So I want to pick up on what Chris and Karim were mentioning about the linkages to the NRIs. And I maybe mentioned that on the first day but I want to reiterate it here as we're considering what we can do for next years as improvement.
So we've been forever discussing how we can actually connect between the global IGF and the NRIs more strongly and make the ties really valuable, and I think if we reconsider the fact that we can put into the criterias of selection of workshops something to indicate that the workshop would be -- or the discussion of the theme would be taken in on national or regional levels through one of or more of the events that take place through the year, and then give an extra bonus to that criteria in the evaluation of the workshop, that would serve two purposes. On one hand, it would bring the discussion bottom-up through a grassroot NRIs so the things would be discussed at national and regional level and then come up to the global IGF, and we would help newcomers from the regions, from the nationals and the regions and the youth, come up and maybe help in the proposal-making, and then learn how they can actually make a good proposal by -- by the help of others that would reach out to them that have already done proposals.
So this is an idea that you might want to consider for next year. Of course it has to be put up front at -- when we're announcing the workshops, because people should know that they will go through the process of going out and reaching through the national/regional events and try to discuss the themes over there. And that would also serve the purpose of having different -- a diversity on the discussion from different angles; in that sense, maybe geographical developed versus developed south versus north and all of that.
And one last thing. As we were speaking about inclusion and diversity, and since I'm only speaking for the first time today, I just want to put on record that today is Eid, a feast for the Muslims. And I just want to wish every Muslim a happy Eid, and then say that I would hope that in future, meetings can actually avoid being on feast days of anyone. I know it's always difficult to find a date, but I think that's an important thing that we should consider.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Thank you. Just about the topics for the workshops. Amrita pointed out to us that it appears that there is just one session on gender, gender discussions, gender debates. And I mean it really is the case that throughout the -- all the submissions, we didn't have as many submissions, but just to flag this out to you guys, because I think as much as we can be focused on the overarching themes and also on this discussion with -- with the GDC, it would also be important for us to reemphasize the debates we framed for the intersessional work. And given that gender and digital rights are one of the sessions for the intersessional work, I would just maybe -- and I don't know if this -- if this was what Amrita raised her hand to say as well, I would just like maybe ask for us to just take a second look on the list and see whether there isn't any other panels we could consider for this case. Because just having one is rather problematic for a global Internet Governance Forum.
And I think it was Chair that mentioned that we had some sessions that you had to evaluate differently because it was an all-women panel. So my question would be whether or not your evaluation on diversity is what downgraded these sessions or whether one of them was about gender, because that would be, again, important to have it on the agenda.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Thank you. Amrita for the record.
Yes, Bruna and I have the same point to raise because the only session on gender which we see is Afro-Feminist AI Governance, but challenges and lessons. If you look at the global digital divide, the gender-based digital divide, the gender-based violence and other issues, I think it is -- we are being unfair in the entire equilibrium. So in case anyone has any -- I was looking at all the sessions, since we couldn't see all the sessions earlier. Is there any other session where, you know, even if the topic looks general, there is something on gender being discussed? Because I think it is important that we be fair when we want everyone to be on the Internet and do everything equally. Perhaps if all the groups could re-look and see if there is something which we could bring in. Because I see children, I can see other stuff, but I don't see gender.
And thank you for bringing it up to us.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Thanks, Paul. And I want to echo Amrita's point about, you know, re-looking to see if there might be some proposals related to gender. I did have a look at the list for governing data and Internet fragmentation, and unfortunately there were no proposals that were specific to this topic. So hopefully others -- other themes have received something and can look at those.
I have a question for first-year MAG members. I wanted to hear your experiences evaluating proposals for the first time. Some of you I think might have experience from your own NRIs. Some of you might be doing this for the first time and you've never done anything like this before. And I'm very interested to hear if you found the process easy to understand, you knew what you needed to do, or did you struggle to know what would be the right or appropriate way to do an evaluation?
So I'd love to hear your thoughts on the matter and whether, if there were, you know, areas where you struggled, and how could we have made it easier or how could we have supported you better as, you know, either the second- or third-year MAG members, to make the process better for you.
I'm also thinking because there were some comments about, you know, certain proposals being too technical or like issues where you don't have the expertise. And so even for myself, I'm not a data expert, but I had to cover that theme. And so I had to do a lot of reading myself just to understand what certain proposals were about. And could that have been a better way for the group to work so that we could, instead of only focusing on doing our own individual evaluations, have a venue or a platform for us to discuss topics that we are unsure about and to seek help if need be?
I know that we are on the mailing list, like the submailing list, but that isn't always helpful, you know.
And so I wonder if perhaps we could look into having a buddy system for new MAG members, especially through the evaluation period. We could do this next year. Or some other way, like (indiscernible), I don't know, we have to explore it to see how we might open conversation easier for one another.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Thank you, Paul.
I would like to echo what (saying name) and some other colleagues mentioned before about capacity building. I think if we -- if we think about the process of evaluating, we can see easily, particularly by the members that are in our third year or second year, that perhaps we have the same problems regarding what our expectations were during that evaluation moments, regarding how the proposers understands the process and the -- and the formats of what we are expecting to receive. And most of it is already published. Like the hybrid approach, just as an example, we have a document that is published with the hybrid approach, but I don't think most of the proposer actually read this document.
And I think every year we just come up with this kind of proposal, solutions. And perhaps we need to think some other ways of doing this capacity building, in a way to maybe force the proposers to actually go through a more concrete process.
What I mean is that -- I'm not talking about building by ourselves -- I mean, by the MAG or by the secretariat a learning platform. But maybe we could take advantage of an existing learning platform.
I can mention because I work -- currently I'm working at the training program at ISOC. And there is a chance that we could actually use this kind of platform. We could actually build the content with them regarding how to elaborate a proposal. And we can have it there available for -- for the future years, of course, in order to have a concrete resource for this capacity-building process.
And in that way, besides this, if we made it mandatory to go through this kind of very simple learning process, maybe we can ensure to have improved proposals in the future. Thank you, Paul.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>TALANT SULTANOV: Thanks so much, Chair.
Following up on previous comments by Wout and others, I think when we were saying that the IGF maybe needs more involvement, for example, technical community is not as active, when in my country they ask me what's IGF, I try to explain to them -- I'm not sure if it's correct -- to say that this is United Nations General Assembly for all things digital and Internet. And this somehow gives a portrayal of what this event is.
And perhaps the IGF can do more effort in this case to bring in more people to the discussion. So, for example, in the agenda, there are different related events happening around the year, like IETFs and NRIs. However, maybe we may know about them. Sometimes we don't know about them. Perhaps if we make an effort to bring rapporteurs from these events, for example, technical community from IETF could come and say, well, this year we discussed this and this. I don't know, half an hour, 15-minute interventions. NRIs, Asia-Pacific Regional IGF, others can come.
There is this very, I think, anticipated event, The Internet Hall of Fame. I have limited experience notes. But perhaps the awards can be done at the IGF. I think it could add some also significance, interest.
And also, finally, we speak about the splinternet. However, the situation may be we all speak about it but those countries that are planning to split, maybe they're not present. So we have to somehow bring them in as perhaps at least as observers so that they know that even in central Asia, we have countries like Turkmenistan and others that are not really present in Internet and probably not present at the IGF and not even speaking about large countries. So I think that could also be one way to make it more multistakeholder. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you, Tereza.
>>TEREZA HOREJSOVA: Thank you very much. Tereza Horejsova, MAG member.
I'm not sure if we came to the conclusion on the gender points that were brought up by several other speakers before me.
The realization that we don't have enough sessions on gender is something that we wouldn't have, you know, kind of discovered just within the issue themes but we can see it now.
And I'm talking now from myself, not for our security track group. But I did check the proposals we had in orange for security track. And there is one session dedicated to gender which was relatively strong. It didn't make it just because it was so competitive.
And it's a question on gender violence online, number 71 for anybody who would like to review this workshop.
One thing that is very interesting about is that one of the suggested speakers is the President of the European Parliament. Obviously we cannot guarantee this will happen. But if it happens, that wouldn't be bad either.
So while I would personally not like to exchange for another session that we have put in the green basket, if there was a way to increase maybe the total number of workshops from 78 to 79, I would support including that one, especially for the reasons that were expressed before.
Let me know, Dear Chair, what your thoughts are and others. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. My thoughts are the message that you're sending is important and actually critical for the long-term health of the Internet ecosystem as a whole.
That said, I think we're locked on the content we agreed to for this meeting. And I think we don't want to keep opening the box.
But I think what we want to do -- and out of all of the information that's coming out in the last hour and a half, is use this to actually refine what it means for the IGF.
When I talk about the IGF externally, I talk about it as a platform, right? In the sense of any other kind of platform that you have in the digital universe. People use platforms to make messages. People use platforms to support industry. People use platforms for a variety of reasons. But the thing that distinguishes a platform is that it's got the utility for more than one entity and it's expandable and adaptable. And IGF has proven to date to be very much a platform, but I don't know that it's been taken advantage of in that way. It's not been marketed that way.
The messaging about IGF as separate from the messaging from the individual sessions that can be from the different stakeholder groups, the messaging has frequently been confusing or at odds with each other. So there have been times when different parts of the IGF community have issued commentary on some part or some issue or another and some other part of the community has issued conflicting statements. That's a normal thing.
But at the same time, without a fuller understanding on the part of the people who -- where these messages are landing doesn't have confidence or a good understanding of what is the role of a platform, then the messages themselves become diluted and nonactionable or more difficult to action.
And I think you have seen the results of that play out in different ways in different years. Certainly the platform idea has a lot more currency now with having gone through the COVID cycle and the forced creation, artificially somewhat, of a platform on a platform. But it does set up this opportunity to take all of the feedback that's come out from all of this discussion so far -- and we still have a few. We will just go down this side since you almost all have your flags up on this side.
To take all of this information -- and it's great. There's both conflicting information and there's agreeing information coming from all the people in this room. We're most of the way through the preliminary planning phase for this year's IGF, and we need to be say laser focused on making sure we land that really well. Land that with the people who are doing the sessions, making sure that we help them do the best it can possibly be.
At the same time, we need to be thinking about how do we make this process better and better and how do we turn this into a platform that people recognize as a primary system as opposed to sort of an afterthought.
And it's kind of a stark difference between the people that are, like, what's the IGF? Never heard of it. And then there's this passionate community but they don't always sync up. And that's -- from my perspective, that's a real challenge on a going-forward basis.
So we'll just go down this side and come back this side for anybody who still wants to make some comments.
And then we'll run this session till lunch and then take a break. So we've got about half an hour to go.
>>PEACE OLIVER AMUGE: Thank you, Chair, Peace Oliver Amuge, a MAG member for the record.
You have already kind of spoken to this, but I feel I should still flag some of the gender sessions that were here. Maybe we might think about considering them in other categories or something. But I thought I should just pull them out.
Session 473 is Not Just Connect, Closing the Gender Digital Divide in Africa. And then session 358, Engender Equality Through Digital Public Goods.
And then session 443, How Can We Make the Internet Safer for Girls and Women. So there were a couple of gender -- these kind of proposals, really, in the proposals that we reviewed. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Next?
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Thank you very much. Karim Attoumani for the record.
I have a small question on the chart. Is it possible to have such a database of all workshops selected of our purviews of the IGF?
I think the idea to have a certain kind of capacity building is a good one, but I think that's if a newcomer and public may have access only on the selected purviews workshop. Might give us also -- could guide us a newcomer.
And I think if we can make it available with a certain kind of anonymity, I don't know if we need to put the name of the speaker on the origin. Maybe it could help to improve the quality of next call for proposal. Thank you.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Thank you, Chair. Yeah, I hear your points on the program, and I think we just agreed on -- at least started to agree on a preliminary list of the selected workshops.
But this is still the part of the agenda where we're going to endorse the final list, right?
So I would just like to second the issue on gender because somebody noted, I think it was Wout that noted on the chat, that we already had a BPF on gender as if it would suffice. And also the reason why we keep on asking for another year, renewal for the BPF gender, is due to the fact that the Internet continues to be a dangerous space for women, nonbinary, for the LGBTQY community. The Internet platform, social media platforms continue to be abused. Violence, GBV, it's still the case.
So I don't think the IGF would send a good, like, message -- end message if we refuse to add a new one or if we just had the BPF session plus one other one or just like two, three sessions.
So I do think we should take a look at this with a little more caring because it's not just a relevant issue but it's somehow still a very present discussion on this society and speaking as part of this community as well.
So, yeah, just to second that support. Yeah, that would be it, yeah.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Very quickly, on the issue of gender again, I definitely second us having additional sessions on that. But also, since feedback is about to be given to session organizers about any topic, one of the things that should be given to them as feedback is that they need to put in as part of the discussion on that session what is the gender lens of that element because it's not about having a session on gender. It's not just about having a session on technical. It's about how those things come out and across the entire set of issues that we are debating. So thank you.
>>ADAM PEAKE: Hello. It's Adam Peake for the record.
I just wanted to say the session 439 was in the group that I was part of the evaluation for, and I evaluated it as straight 5s. So I'm perfectly happy to do whatever people think should be done with it. And the session that Tereza mentioned is just interesting and it always was, but I wasn't part of the evaluation group.
However, I would caution that we actually seem to be going around in circles in this process. If we do it for gender, are we going to do it for anything else? Gender is incredibly important. And as I said, I thought it was there for a reason. I thought it was a good session, and it didn't get through our group.
I scored it straight 5s just to be clear that I'm not being a fat, old, white man.
[ Laughter ]
A minority group basically.
I mean, there are other issues that are missing. You mentioned that there are 1 billion -- almost 1 billion people joined the Internet during the time of the pandemic. You'll notice that the technical operations of the Internet did not fail during that time. They scaled.
All the problems we talk about when the Internet are broken tend to be at the layer above. And yet, the technical operations of the Internet, the global, multistakeholder-based technical operations that organizations like ICANN, the IETF, the regional Internet registries, et cetera, do are all under a certain amount of threat in the United Nations' system in the national and regional regulatory issues. And there are no sessions on this. I would like there to be sessions on this, really. I think it's probably the most important issue that's affecting the Internet because if you want to have people online, you really do need an open, global Internet.
However, I don't think now is the time to argue for sessions on a topic that was not really suggested and didn't get through evaluation where it was done. So I'm a little bit torn.
I do think that those two sessions, particularly the one Amrita's mentioned and the one Tereza's mentioned, would add great benefit, value to our program; but I am a little bit uncomfortable about doing it. So I hope that's clear.
I'm basically putting a thumbs up with a caution.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: And I appreciate your words and the caution. I don't think there's anybody in the room that doesn't think that gender issues aren't relevant and important.
There is a problem, though, if we start the second-guessing on what we've already done. So I'm encouraging you to take the feedback that we're having in this session and use it specifically to inform how we solve this problem going forward because this is -- this is not a unique problem for this year. This has been a continual problem. It's a global, societal problem. But we could do different things in our organizational mechanics and dynamics for next year to take care of this issue in a more structured way rather than in an ad hoc way.
And I would encourage you to figure out -- to think about how we use the information the secretariat is capturing, all of everything that's been said, and we feed that into how we work next year because we're going to start how we work next year really soon actually.
That's my personal view. Generally, I -- you know, I -- I am trying to keep my personal views out of things, because I just think, in this role, that's important. But in this case, I think, structurally, we've made decisions. I think we should stick with them, and I think we should basically take this feedback and make this a top priority, if purposefully, in the coming year.
And I commend your thoughts on that.
Bruna, you may want to respond.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Thank you. And apologies for insisting on this, but the BPF gender report for the year of 2020 had some recommendations at its very end, and they were in -- they were issued in three main -- four main topics. The first one is gender mentioning at the IGF. Second one is integration of discussions on violence, harm, pleasure, and consent. Third one is gender diversity. And the fourth one is beyond the IGF.
From the three ones that would be applicable to this case, I think the second one is the one that adheres to this discussion the most, and like one of the main bullet points for this was that the IGF should encourage more discussions on empowerment, self-expression, pleasure and consent as well as women and gender-diverse people's experiences online are not and should not be limited to hard unbalanced issues.
So this is kind of a place where the community, in a bottom-up process, has encouraged the IGF itself to enforce and acknowledge the relevance of this discussion.
So I -- I mean, I'm running out of arguments, but this is kind of accumulating a bottom-up one, maybe the best one for us to reconsider just in this point as well.
And as much as I understand Adam's point and I do agree and see there's a lot of overarching kind of more general issues and topics that could be maybe discussed as well and would allow us to, like, a huge re-opening the decision we just reached, I really don't think that's the case, that it's the same case. I really think like gender should be more present on this agenda and based on this argument that I just mentioned.
So -- And just to add something else. As Marielza brought as well, Our Common Agenda also brings in two different points on the question of gender. The first one would be the leaving the one behind and also they place women and girls at the center. So we still have like another second supporting document to add to this point. So, yeah, I'll stop here, but just to give us a little more food for thought.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
I see two flags on this side. Talant.
>>AMADO ESPINOSA: Yeah, thank you, Mr. Chair. Amado Espinosa. Just to agree with your remarks, I agree with you that right now it's difficult toll overrun on the process that we have already done, but I -- I will second the suggestion from Roberto and Chris in order to prepare ourselves as the MAG members to take a note from all the comments that we have already heard today and try to develop a MAG strategy or a multistakeholder strategy in which we can provide the IGF with a -- probably a little bit more stricter framework for the proposals.
And my suggestion would be, well, if the secretariat has taken note of all these comments, that we can have a summary of them, but specifically I think the mission of the MAG, as far as I learn from the different opinions, is that we have to have a previous brainstorming about the topics that are really relevant nowadays for the Internet environment in our society and how representative these topics are of what we are pursuing. In elaborating a list of recommendations from -- for the proposers or for the organizers, we should include all these topics, not only based on the experience of the MAG members, active MAG members, but also the other institutions who are already collaborating with the IGF. Like, for example, in this case, UNESCO or other organizations who nowadays are playing a role in these kind of definitions, like the ITU or WHO or whatsoever. Then my recommendation will be for the next time to try to have a, let's say, more specific list of the outcomes that the MAG or the IGF is pursuing for the next edition, specifically facing the reality that we are going to hold this meeting in Japan, in a high industrialized country where I think we can really get or learn a lot from the Asian region. And yes, of course, from others as well.
Then my humble recommendation is to summarize all the comments that we have already put today in place and to think about the new role of the MAG in this multistakeholder strategy to -- to give an opportunity for different participants to be really active. The industry, the academia, and so on.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>TEREZA HOREJSOVA: Thank you very much, Chair. Tereza Horejsova.
I will come back, first reaction to Adam. I agree with you, we should be cautious. And I agree with you that gender absolutely is not the only, you know, kind of newly discovered missing, unrepresented talk on the agenda. And we could spend a lot of time looking into possible, you know, gaps in the program.
However, it is our responsibility to present a balanced program. And while yesterday we had an idea, and I will repeat it again, what it looks like within the issues teams. It is the purpose of this session, as I understood from the agenda, to endorse what we want the program of the IGF to look like as a whole. And we have identified this gap. And it was the only -- the first opportunity where we could have identified this gap, because we did not have the full picture yesterday.
Therefore, I would -- I would like to be practically, because we can comment on this but we don't have a solution/conclusion. Is this a go? Is this a no go?
Some practical options to consider would be, one -- and I'll ask that question again, could we possibly increase the workshop numbers? Can we maybe cut from some other types of sessions so that we can accommodate? Again, bearing in mind do we want a full program of the IGF to look like in terms of balance. And these are questions that we have not clarified yet. And I not like to keep them open.
Just also for your information, gender is not my issue at all. I'm not following this issue very closely, so I do not have any particular stakes in this. But I was very sensitive to the reflection that came up with having one session in the IGF on gender.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
Gee, all flags went down almost.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Sorry. Yeah, Chris Buckridge for the record.
Yeah, look, I think -- I think I'm echoing a lot of what Tereza said here. Process-wise -- and this is, I think, respectfully disagreeing with you, Paul -- I think this is a valid and really important phase of this process because, yes, we've divided into the different themes, we've assessed, and we've tried to be as objective as possible in that. We have collected those. There is an important need for a subsequent point, phase in that where we look at the holistic thing and say what's missing? Is there anything we need to include that is not reflected based on those objective assessments? And is that a problem? And how can we fix it? So I think we should allow for that in the process.
On the -- On the content, yeah, again, like Tereza, gender is certainly not my topic, but I do -- I am sort of relatively convinced by those whose topic it is that this is -- this would be a very significant hole in the agenda. And I mean I do think there is -- yeah, this may be addressed in other sessions in different ways, and I hope that's the case, but it's a big enough issue on the global Internet governance agenda that to not have any sessions that are specifically dedicated to it I think would be a glaring hole.
So if there is a chance for us to remedy that now, we should absolutely be considering that.
And I think, yeah, looking at the number of workshops and whether there is scope to just include these two additional ones is -- would certainly be my preference, and hopefully we have a chance to do that.
Final point is just simply to say I agree with you, Paul, and Amado made the point as well that there are lessons to be learned going forward here. Maybe this just simply means we need to allow for this discussion a little earlier in the process. But I think there are still some things we can doing for this year's event. Thanks.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So I actually agree with you. I think what I want to make sure does not happen is that every little "we could have, should have, would have." And this, I agree, is a different category.
I think the challenge that we need to address is procedural in terms of how we can carry something forward and make it -- and do it in such a way that we, at the same time, solve our problem for coming years. Because at the top level, the real question is why did neither of them get through? That's -- That's what the major issue is.
And so when I said just a little bit ago that we need to use what we're doing here as feedback for next year, that's the kind of thing that I'm interested in. I'm not so interested in the utility of the form. I think the -- that's an important issue, but it's mechanical.
The issue here is foundational. And what I've been trying to do through this conversation is get to more of that issue, but nobody's come out and said - and asked the question. That's the logical question. You have everybody here who is scoring proposals, and, you know, I heard about scoring all 5s. Great. Thank you, Adam. But at the same time, nobody asked the question why didn't it get through? And that's the issue I would like us to fix.
In -- For this year, this coming program year, I personally endorse the idea of taking that proposal, those proposals, and putting a working group on them. And I believe we have the slot capacity. He's looking at the secretariat. Okay. So if we have the slot capacity, which I think we do, we can convene a working group specifically to address this issue without touching the rest of the program.
Can people support that?
Everybody supports that?
Then I think we have a way forward that hopefully will result in some innovation and be helpful on a going-forward basis.
So I would like to consider -- We're happy to consider to keep talking about this topic, but I'd like to be able to consider it closed if you agree with the proposal that I've made.
And I think I'm hearing agreement. Okay. All in favor?
Thank you so much.
We still have a few minutes before this session runs out. I want to make sure that anybody who has not had the opportunity to speak has the opportunity to speak and provide feedback. I think it's really important to make sure. So if anybody is -- has -- has not spoken, make yourself known.
Okay. We'll take the online one first, which is Cherie, and then I guess Bruna and Chris. Oh, and Amrita. Okay.
>>CHERIE LAGAKALI: Thanks.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Cherie, you're up.
>>CHERIE LAGAKALI: Thanks, Paul. I was already -- Tereza had already mentioned it in the chat that when we were evaluating the sessions, there was nothing bad about it. It just didn't make the cut. We followed all the processes.
But I wanted to go back to something Joyce asked earlier about how newcomers were evaluating sessions and problems it might have faced and how it went about it. I had to draw back from my experience from evaluating sessions from our APrIGF session proposals, and I think somebody had commenced about capacity-building programs on how to submit. I think that the best place, we push it out into the NRIs and have these trainings over there, workshops over there, but it also came down to individual preference on whether you wanted to join the program committees from our NRIs.
But, yeah, just answering that question on they were really -- I mean, they were good, and I brought it up about the women in cyber sessions, the agenda-based sessions. Mostly the part about diversity is where it was lacking. But, yeah, thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
Let's see. Bruna, I think you were first.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Yeah, just to note two things. One, Cherie has already spoke on because I recalled she was the one mentioning that these workshops were the ones lacking diversity, but I don't know if I agree if that's really the case, because like what do we want to achieve? What's the end goal -- end game of the diversity point in our workshops? Like the evaluation. Do we want it -- all of them to be 50/50? Do we want gender parity or do we want to ensure a seat on the table for the ones who have been historically outside of the IGF or outside the decision tables or the policy-making processes?
So this is -- this is a question I also had while evaluating the workshops and already going back to the point on the first -- first-year MAG members, and so on, because that's -- one of the things -- We needed to discuss, and that's, I mean, going back as well to Joyce's question that we kind of like lost in between the conversation on gender, is that we should just like go over the metrics and the points we need to evaluate just so everybody is on the same page about it. Because if they're generic enough, not everyone is going to do it the same way, and while some might do this in a more holistic, as they try to do, some others would just like to if it's 50/50, then it's done.
So, I mean, what do we really want to achieve with these metrics and points throughout the workshop evaluation is my main here.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Amrita for the record. I think this last one, one and a half hours has been a good exercise. Like we have been evaluating things, look at it from one lens but we have been quite myopic forgetting certain other parts which should be there. As in if I look at it, and I may sound very harsh, gender is an issue. It is not something which you have to look at, but it is an issue. It's a social issue which we all have to look at it. We may not be working on it, but it is there and we actually need to do something about it.
So I think we should give parity perhaps for the next year when we are reviewing, when we're looking at other parameters, we could always say that we look at all the aspects of issues. Yes, fragmentation is an issue. Yes, other things are there, issue, but if many people cannot use the Internet, what is the Internet of any use to anyone? That's the basic question of mine. If I can use it and someone else can't use it properly, what is the use of Internet or sophisticated things?
So I'm very passionate about it and think very hard about it. So I think this should be there. And this is what happens to gender, because we always deprioritize it, and somehow later we push it into the table.
But thank you so much. This is besides the thing, but I think we also need to look at other things when we are evaluating things.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Thanks, Paul. And just a very brief comment. Chris Buckridge.
It's simply to say I'm glad this is resolved, and I'm echoing Amrita here in that I've actually found the last hour and a half discussion really interesting and useful.
Thinking practically in terms of what we might learn going into next year, if we're to do something similar in terms of themes and groups assessing themes, I think there's probably a good scope to suggest that that happen before this two-day meeting. There's no reason that those groups couldn't have gotten together in remote discussions last week or the week before -- maybe not the week before. Last week, or least planned it into the schedule and work out what those rankings are, which ones they want to include and then provide that to the secretariat so that when we come into the beginning of this opportunity for us all to meet together, we have that full time list of what we -- what is an initial thing. And we can have that discussion of, okay, what are the ups here? How can we change that? What needs to be tweaked to make this event really work in a holistic sense?
So that would just be thinking for next year.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Anyone else would like to have the last word before lunch? Okay, Marielza.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Marielza, UNESCO. Just going back to a point that Chris had made before as well, that at some point, in the beginning of the process of designing the next IGF, some strategy discussion for the IGF itself, in terms of substantive strategy and policy approach, is desirable because then that's where you identify some of these issues that should be on the table and how do you foster that they come through in sessions and so on. That would be something I would like to reinforce. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. I think we're adjourned for -- oh, Joyce, please take the floor.
>>JOYCE CHEN: Thanks, Paul. Sorry for -- can you hear me? Putting in the last word. I wanted to say, first, thank you very much to Amrita pointing out what was essentially a huge blind spot on the part of the MAG to have sort of missed this throughout the evaluation process so far.
I'm glad that we managed to kind of steer (indiscernible). But I agree with you, Paul. I think it's very telling the fact that those proposals did not get in through what should have been a very thorough evaluation process.
So a working group to look into this issue I think is very needed. I fully support it.
And I think although this is an important issue, like gender itself -- and I'm 100% supportive of it as well. I think it is also very telling that we had to struggle to find specific proposals that sort of fit the bill out of so many, 200+ proposals.
So that could also be an issue with how we did the initial description of the themes during the call for proposals. And perhaps we neglected to bring this up as a topic that we thought was important and we invited proposals on these issues.
So I think another reflection needs to be done for that process because it's obviously not just from the evaluation process. It starts from the point of submissions.
So just wanted to thank you and thank Amrita and thank everybody for working to bring those proposals up and to put it into the program. Thanks very much.
And enjoy your lunch.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
As I understand it, if you are not an IGF donor, you have lunch until 3:00. If you are an IGF donor, you have lunch until 2:00. Okay? And we're adjourned.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: All right. Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen. Can we now take our seats to start the afternoon and time session of the MAG meeting. Thank you. I will now give it over to our chair, Paul Mitchell, to start the meeting.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Thanks for all the work, again, we did before lunch. It's an impressive body of achievement.
So we're going to continue the agenda. Just point out that we've basically landed and agreed on everything relative to the program up to this point. So thank you. But we do have some reports from working groups to work through and the leaders track and the parliamentary track.
So I would actually like to turn it over to Chengetai to provide updates on those two things.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: I will hand it over to Sorina to provide on the parliamentary track.
>>SORINA TELEANU: Thank you, Chengetai. Hello, everyone. Sorina Teleanu for the record.
This is the third year we're organizing a complex -- let's call it like that -- parliamentary track. As it has been said already over the past few days, we start with a parliamentary event on the margins of the African IGF happening rather soon in Malawi. So we have two-day event for mostly African members of parliaments from across the region, but there will also be involvement from other parliamentarians from around the world. And that's the first element of the parliamentary track of IGF 2022.
And then as usual, we will be planning a series of activities for parliamentarians at the IGF in November/December that would include pretty much like a series of what we call closed sessions for MPs to be able to exchange experiences and discuss among each other and with representatives of various organizations in the Internet governance digital policy space. And then the public roundtable where everyone would be invited.
As you know, the main challenge is to reach out to members of parliaments, especially those with whom deal with digital policy issues. So whenever we have more details and invitations ready to be sent, we would very much appreciate support from you in that regard to forward those invitations to the most relevant members of parliaments from your country. I think I will stop here, but happy to answer any questions you might have. Thank you.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: I can just also just say what I said about the high-level leaders meeting, that we are still in the process of firming up the agenda for the high-level leaders meeting.
We would like to have a spotlight on the African region, but the issues or concerns of the people in the African region are not distinct from the issues and concerns from people from all over. I mean, access is an issue wherever you look. I mean, there's rural access. There's small island developing states access issues. Even in urban areas, there are access issues. So that's one of the themes that we want to look at, is connectivity.
The next one is rights, rights online, rights to your data, et cetera. And then the second one is security and cybercrime. So those are the three issue areas that we are going to be looking at.
We do envisage it's going to be on a day zero and day one. We're still seeing with the host country and the Economic Commission for Africa, if we can do this. We do intend to invite high-level leaders in Addis Ababa, from outside Addis Ababa.
We do foresee that we are going to have a number of presidents from the African region who have said that they would be interested in coming to the IGF. So I think we're going to have our highest numbers of heads of state coming to the IGF. So I think that's something to look forward to as well.
Again, as we said, we do want to shape the discussion so that the outputs could be something that feeds into the Digital Global Compact so maybe shaping it to come up with a set of principles, et cetera.
If you were here on Wednesday when Yu Ping and Jason from the Tech Envoy's Office were speaking, that's what they said they were looking for. So we want to shape the outcomes of that high-level leaders meeting to something that easily can become a significant input into the Common Agenda and Global Digital Compact.
And, as I said, it's not just government leaders, NGO leaders as well, and company leaders that we will be inviting to come to the high-level leaders track.
I think I'll end my presentation there. So if anybody's got any questions about the parliamentary track or the high-level leaders track, please, you can ask.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: No questions?
>>CAROL ROACH: I have a question.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: This has been a pretty vibrant group with questions before. I knew there would be one.
>>ALHAGIE MBOW: Thank you very much, Chair. Just a little bit of information on the parliamentary track. We are able to put in almost 30-something members of parliament from the African region.
We intend to create a network called The African Parliamentary Network on Internet Governance. So far we have 30 members of parliament that have subscribed to this particular network. So the intent is to launch the network in Malawi in the next few weeks. And we hope to also attract other members of parliament from across Africa, especially digital parliaments like ECOWAS, like IELA in East Africa, so that we can have more parliamentarians participate in the Internet Governance Forum. So we are aiming to do that in Malawi once we are there.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Any other questions or comments on this topic?
Thank you, Carol.
>>CAROL ROACH: Do we just send the registration form to our ministers, or are there formal invitations?
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: There are going to be formal invitations. At the moment, the host government has issued invitations through their missions and embassies in Addis. So they should be reaching the -- the governments through that. And we are going to be sending additional information as soon as we have firmed up the actual agenda as such, which is going to be -- hopefully by the end of this month, we're going to be sending out further information on the high-level leaders track.
But the way it's going to be done, it's going to be through the missions.
>>CAROL ROACH: Okay. So how do I ensure that --
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: But -- yes, that's another thing we have also come across, is that sometimes, I don't know, due to the way things are distributed, they go through, you know, the foreign ministry channel and they may not go to the ICT minister and things like that. So I think early next month we would -- we'll keep you up-to-date, tell you when these things have been formed, have been sent. And then you can check with your ministry if they have not -- if they have not received, we can also send copies. So that's one way of doing it.
>>CAROL ROACH: Okay. I will look out for it. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Bruna.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Thank you, Paul.
Same question for the parliamentarian track. Do we centralize the invitations? Or is it possible for us to maybe add some names and do some suggestions? Because if it also goes through like central government, it might be the case that (indiscernible) like political orientation, it does not reach really the parliamentarians that we need to be bringing to these discussions.
So just maybe I fill it out, but just, yeah, in terms of --
>>SORINA TELEANU: No, it's is a good question, but there are some protocol rules here, so we cannot issue invitations directly to members of parliaments.
What we did in previous years was for the IPU to send invitations to the IPU groups' national parliaments. This year we're seeing whether we can send directly to heads of parliaments.
So those are the formal invitations. But from there, only if you can reach out directly to members of parliament and tell them that, you know, there is this invitation there, look into it, that would be what we would welcome. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Talant.
>>TALANT SULTANOV: Thank you very much, Chair. Talant Sultanov.
Sometimes for -- officials from developing countries traveling cost can be an issue, and just in case secretariat knows potential sources of -- that might be able to -- for which we could apply and cover costs of travel for parliamentarians or ministers, that might be helpful.
>>SORINA TELEANU: For MPs we do have some travel support available. There will be a co-launch later in the year.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: There's a full account, in fact, for travel support. So -- so if parliamentarians, you can do it through that as well, or anybody whom you think is important. And we're also looking for people who have not traditionally attended IGF meetings. So, yes, the call is there, and I think we've got for funds for about 80 or so people.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Timea?
>>TIMEA SUTO: Thank you very much, Chair, for giving me the floor. This is Timea Suto from International Chamber of Commerce for the record, and thank you for allowing me to speak, although I am not a MAG member.
Just a quick question for clarification to the secretariat, please, regarding the high-level meeting and the participation of nongovernmental high-level speakers and participants of what the process is to identify those and how can we be of help. Is there a deadline by which we should suggest such speakers or participants? Whom should we get in touch with about that? And how us, who have a larger network and reach for, in my case, companies can be of help in making sure that we manage the expectations for the event?
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you, Timea. Yes, we are constructing a list at the moment. We're using the -- we're adapting the list that we had in the past, but adding new names and deleting those.
We do welcome suggestions. And if you do have any suggestions, you could send an email to the secretariat. I would like to say Eleonora's name, but I think maybe we'll just put in a separate mailbox so that it doesn't get mixed up, and we'll put that somewhere on the website as well, and also advertise it so that if anybody has got a name, they can just send it to that mailbox and then it will be shared between us, ECA, and the host country as well. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Adam?
>>ADAM PEAKE: Thanks. Yeah, it would be very nice to hear about the contacts with the parliamentarians. The IPU didn't seem to have the most up-to-date of contact list. But if you could ask -- once the process has begun, if you can make sure to notify the MAG, and then perhaps we can volunteer and let you know who we're contacting rather than letting it be completely random. But there are certainly parliaments that I'm sure we can certainly all try to reach out to.
The -- About the tracks, both tracks, the parliamentarian and the high level. So they seem to be adopting some if not all of the five themes that we're having for the IGF as a whole. Will they still be sort of encouraged to direct those to the Global Digital Compact? Any outcomes and discussions? Or has any thought been given to that? Because if we did something that was, you know, IGF plus leaders, given that the leaders also have a seat as member states within the -- within the process itself, it would be interesting if they could take something from the leadership panel at the IGF into that process. And they would have a very direct route whereas we're still concerned about the route for our own contributions into the Global Digital Compact.
I don't know if you have any thoughts on whether the leadership panel will be pushing things towards the GDC.
>>SORINA TELEANU: For the parliamentary track, all I can say at this stage is that, yes, there is an outcome document. This is what usually comes out of the parliamentary track.
To what that extent it can feed into the Global Digital Compact and whatever comes out of the whole IGF, I think that's something we still need to discuss.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Before I move on, anybody else have something specific here?
Sandra. Okay. Sandra, please, take the floor.
>>SANDRA HOFERICHTER: Hello, everyone. Can you hear me?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes.
>>SANDRA HOFERICHTER: Okay. Thank you. It's Sandra Hoferichter speaking from EuroDIG. Thank you for giving me the floor. I'm not a MAG member.
On the issue of inviting parliamentarians, I would just like to share the experience we mate in 2019 and '20 because our association, not EuroDIG, the German association I'm associated with, was tasked with inviting parliamentarians. And I heard that Sorina was saying there is a certain type of protocol that has to be followed, which I fully understand.
I also feel that the help of the IPU is necessary, but I would like to say that this is not the only source that should be used to invite parliamentarians because what we experienced when a president of a parliament or a chamber is sending out an invitation to another parliament or a president, this invitation was many, many times never circled down in the system of the Parliament.
So what happened a lot was, and maybe that's also something without violating a protocol, if the host country assigns an association that works like we did in 2019 for the German parliament -- not for the German parliament, for the German host, that the host country basically assigns an association or someone from the national parliament in Ethiopia to take this issue on. And in addition to the message that comes from the ITU and from the President of the host country, that at the same time there is a follow-up process from the bottom in terms of reaching out to the individual parliamentarians that have been part of the IGF in the recent years.
This, we found, was the only way and the only successful way to get a significant number of parliamentarians participating in the IGF, because what comes from the top is important because that gives the legitimacy, and this is what we need. But on the second moment, you need to have sort of awareness process saying, listen, you, Parliament, has received an invitation. You might not have seen it. Please ask for it and please consider coming to the IGF. And this was, at the end, the methodology how we got such a great result in 2019 and also '20. And this would be my advice. Possibly something for the host country to take on for the Ethiopian chamber or parliament. That would be really help to get many parliamentarians to the IGF.
Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Adam, you have your hand still up.
Not anymore. Okay.
I just want to go down the list of a couple of things we want to accomplish, and I want to make sure if there's any other business that we save time for it.
So I think we need to do some updates on the intersessional activities, best practice forums, et cetera. And then we have an opportunity to take a look at proposed revisions to our terms of reference. And we have an opportunity to take on specific additional content that people want to talk about. I just want to make sure we reserve some time.
So Bruna is going to want some time. Okay. Everybody wants time.
Okay. So let's start with the intersessional activities.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: It was just a question on planning main sessions. I don't know if we skipped that agenda item or if we wanted to do a discussion on that.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: No, we do want do a discussion on that, too. But let's clear out the intersessional activities first. So we have best practice forum on gender. Should be very topical given our earlier topic. Cybersecurity, meaningful access, and Internet fragmentation.
So let's take them one at a time. Who's going to talk for gender?
>>BRUNA SANTOS: It is me. We were discussing what could be the approach for the session. Given that there was already a presentation on the first day of the Open Consultations on the scope for the BPF this year that's going to do a little bit on regulations, I just wanted to take this opportunity maybe to see whether other MAG members would have perceptions or thoughts on the work of the BPF gender for this year or if you would like to engage or suggest just a name of any specific expert or somebody or some organization we should be reaching out to because I discussed this with Daphnee and also Amrita, and we thought it was not worth repeating the presentation here. Just to give you guys a chance to ask any questions or suggest anything about this year's work.
Yeah, I don't know, Amrita, if you want to add anything.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you very much.
Next we have BPF -- excuse me -- on cybersecurity.
>>HARINIOMBONANA ANDRIAMAMPIONONA: Thank you, Chair. I'm going to talk about the BPF on cybersecurity.
The same as the BPF on gender, we have already presented most of the work we are already working on actually.
But at this early stage, we cannot say -- we would not like to repeat the presentation of yesterday but we would like to have the advice of MAG members, if you have any idea of how we can improve, how we can present the work to be linked to the themes of this year. I don't know if - Markus, I would like to invite you to add.
>>MARKUS KUMMER: Thank you. What you said is perfectly fine.
But I think as a more high-level comment, we've been discussing it for quite a number of years on the need to better integrate the various intersessional activities. But I think one change could be very much the mindset that we think at the outset, not as an afterthought, how the BPFs also more proactively think how they can contribute to the main session and the MAG also on how to integrate. And the same goes also for the dynamic coalitions.
For them we discussed at also our coordination meetings that they think actually how can we contribute to the main sessions. And the same thing goes also to the MAG. Actually, can we draw on all the knowledge that is present within the dynamic coalitions to draw them in, into the main sessions?
So my humble suggestion is more a change in attitude and not a complex new mechanism but just think of it upstream and not just as an afterthought.
But I think it's very helpful to have this discussion at this stage with the MAG. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. We have meaningful access. No speaking for meaningful access?
Okay. Moving to Internet fragmentation.
>>BRUNA SANTOS: I'm very sorry. But it's the same thing. We didn't want to repeat the presentation. The BPF has assembled its multistakeholder working group, and it's starting to have its structure to the work. So any feedback is welcome.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay, thank you.
Dynamic coalitions. Markus, I think this is yours.
>>MARKUS KUMMER: I basically made my speech -- state my thing already.
But there is also -- I think Wout had sent a letter on behalf of one dynamic coalition, which I think he would like to comment.
Dynamic coalitions basically collectively -- as I said in the presentation two days ago, they're very keen to contribute. And they do feel also that there's always been a question, time is short at the annual meetings. And one thing -- one suggestion that had quite a lot of traction was maybe to have an intersessional meeting that would allow dynamic coalitions to get together to discuss in substance what they could then contribute to the annual meeting. This is one suggestion.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Marielza.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Thank you, Paul. Marielza for the record, UNESCO.
Just wanted to touch on the policy network on meaningful access, as a member of the policy network.
The conversation has been evolving from connectivity to meaningful connectivity, which is what made it into the Digital Cooperation Roadmap, and there's a measure for that underpinning the Digital Compact as well.
But the conversation has been evolving towards the issues of meaningful access that goes beyond that. It's not enough to have, you know, infrastructure. It's not enough to have infrastructure plus device. All that responsibility rests best on governments and users.
But then it goes beyond towards the issues of platforms, also having to have an enabling environment for participation. It goes into, for example, the issues of multilingualism and the capabilities for people to really access information through that platform.
The fact that they don't offer access for persons who don't speak specific languages or the issues of accessibility for persons with disabilities and so on and so forth.
So this is an opportunity. I think the conversations on meaningful access and the policy network is an opportunity to enhance -- to make a contribution to the Global Digital Compact and to enhance the dialogue over there. So I just wanted to point that out. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
Does anyone have any comment or question on any of the intersessional activities before we move on to the main sessions?
I just want to make sure that all of this is clear.
Wout, thank you.
You have the floor.
>>WOUT de NATRIS: Thank you, Chair. Thank you, Paul.
As you know, I've sent a letter recently to you. And the question is: Do we discuss it now? Do you want to discuss it at another time?
But I think Markus has made some points already, which I think he voiced very well. But what I would like to share with the MAG is what we face as a dynamic coalition.
The coalition I'm coordinating is called Internet Standards, Security and Safety. And under it are several working groups. We have professional researchers doing research into policy comparisons to come up with the recommendations, to come up with guidelines and toolkits that, beyond the IGF, somebody has to start working with to make sure that Internet standards and related best practices that actually exist sometimes for dozens of years -- well, not dozens, but two dozens of years -- are not massively and widely deployed but they would make the Internet instantly safer and ICTs IoTs instantly safer if they were deployed tomorrow. And we are trying to find ways to make sure that governments understand how they can use their procurement system to actually deploy these standards, to make industry and SMEs understand how they can use their supply chain management and their buying tactics to buy secure from the shelf instead of insecure from the shelf.
And these working groups are all going to have about 90 minutes in total to present their outcomes, but that is not going to get us any buy-in in the form of support from people who will be taking decisions on this.
And if as the IGF in the future we want to have actionable outcomes, that means this sort of work -- and I'm not just talking about our own coalition but in general, it means the decision takers present at the IGF have to learn what actually the actionable outcomes are.
And I think that that is the discussion that we would like to have in the near future.
How can we organize the IGF meeting to make sure that it does a few things? One, people who do not engage in intersessional work are present at the IGF and can give very valuable input to intersessional work at the IGF and then go their own way again. But that would mean that they know about the work and learn about the work.
The second is how can we present this work to the people who make decisions so that is somewhere to do with the high-level meeting. So how can the tangible outcomes be presented to these people so that they understand what the IGF does, what the value of the IGF is, and what the value of the intersessional work is. That would get us much more buy-in in the next year.
So how can we organize that? I think we have proposed a few possible ways forward, and I will read them to you and then I will leave it to you to decide how are we going to discuss this in the future.
But I think that if the DCs would have some sort of a slot to present themselves, together perhaps with the BPF and the policy networks, to present the main tangible outcomes on day one somewhere would help tremendously.
And in day four would have some sort of a roundup for all the intersessional work. We would know exactly what the outcomes of the IGF is and what the messages are that can be taken into the IGF report and present the work of next year, all in one.
What could also be done is to have some intermediate moments in which the intersessional work presents themselves. It's called a Dynamic Coalition Week in the letter, somebody suggested, but it could be a day. But something that would give meaningful presence somewhat during the year.
And the work also has to become an integral part of the IGF report. Last year the DCs were hardly mentioned, and there were all these outcomes.
So there are a few more. Let me stop here and with the invitation to discuss this together and not just with IS3C but with all intersessional work of the IGF and make sure that the actionable outcomes become actionable outcomes because that is what these professional researchers that we currently are paying to do the work deserve to present on when the IGF is there, because it's the only opportunity to present this work.
So thank you for this time. And I hope that we will engage in a serious discussion in the very near future. Thank you, Paul.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you for the proposal. And you know who to talk to and everybody in the room here knows who to talk to now. I think there's certainly merit in finding a way to continue the discussion with an eye to doing something that's concrete. And I would certainly support that.
There's also an opportunity to be very thoughtful about how the programming lines up for the -- between the different best practice groups and the rest of the intersessional work and the main sessions so that they all sort of make a cohesive whole when you put them together. Not for this meeting but that's great for pickup discussions. So thank you.
We have Timea on the phone. Or online, I guess, not on the phone.
>>TIMEA SUTO: Online. Thank you, Paul. Timea Suto from ICC for the record.
Just a question slash proposal again directed at the secretariat; I'm sorry. But I was wondering how much space is on the agenda, given that we have a smaller venue this year, for all these streams to be featured during the IGF's weekly program in the end. What are the alternatives to give space for the requests that we receive from intersessional work, NRIs, all these different things?
It would be great to know how much space there is on the agenda so everybody knows what to expect and they're not surprised at the last minute that they might not have as much time as they expected to present their work.
And another question about the IGF Village space, if there is something that is going to happen this year as well on, and whether or not some of these activities of presentation, of intersessional work could be channeled into a dedicated space in the village that is manned throughout the week by the different groups to be used as -- as a modality to share that work if they don't make it to the agenda itself. So just a question to the secretariat on space and availability.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you very much, Timea. Several answers to your question. Yes, we do have limited space compared to last year. Last year was exceptional with the number of spaces. And also Berlin was also exceptional.
So I don't foresee we're going to have that much space in the near future for things. So this year we have even less rooms.
There is going to be the -- the village. I know that Eleonora was speaking about a speakers' corner at the village. I'm not too sure whether we have resolution on that. But we are going to try, but we have to get back to you on that, but don't count on it.
And then also I'd just like to mention that whatever we give to somebody, we have to take from somebody else. I think we have reached saturation point as far as the sessions go. So if we want to give more space to whatever, we have to take it from something else.
And then my next answer to that as well is remember we were asked to have a more focused, streamlined IGF as well. So we have to balance all these things and see where that takes us.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
Anyone else have questions or comments on intersessional work?
If not -- yes, go ahead.
>>ADAM PEAKE: With that -- I was going to save this for any other business but really it was a question about all the other types of sessions again. The open forums, the networking sessions and all the rest.
If all of those are accepted, then, you know, there's very little space left, given what you've just said, Chengetai. So I don't know how the secretariat is going to review those, but, you know, you can see people who have multiple open forums, and they may even have also town halls as well as an open forum, at least in the title. There are people that have got networking sessions, dynamic coalitions, you know. Probably best to try and limit people to one of these additional types of session. And if the MAG can help in any way, at least, to help you review these things so that you don't feel isolated in saying no, perhaps that could be done, if that would be helpful.
But I do think, you know, there's a lot of -- there's a lot of strange and unusual duplication this year. They're important sessions, but let's remember that this is -- I think Markus often says this is prime real estate in a, you know, U.N.-related organization conference. It really isn't something that should be seen as taken for granted.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. And that's a good segue into inviting comments on how -- what the approach we should take to the open -- the main sessions should be.
So, for example, do the open session -- do the main sessions follow our agreed five themes? Is there -- Do we decide to mandate -- put a mandate on format or content choices? Who should be leading the work? What's the role of MAG in this work?
So in the session we had before lunch, we knocked off all of the workshops and the guidance for the workshops and the programmatic approach there. This is the question -- I'm on the same topic but specifically for the main sessions.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Thanks, Paul. Chris Buckridge for the record.
I think there's probably not a lot of contention that the main sessions should follow the five themes that were outlined. I think that makes a lot of sense, to me at least. Happy to hear other opinions, but I think that seems like a useful starting point.
I think a number of those -- well, let's say at least -- I know the fragmentation one, there is intersessional work. There's a Policy Network that's related to that. I think we need to be very -- take a lot of care to make sure that the main sessions work with rather than against the intersessional work that's going on, because those intersessional sessions -- intersessional initiatives will probably have their own sessions as well. We don't want to see content duplicated. We want to make sure that they're complementing each other.
I think there does need to be a role for the MAG in helping shape these. I'm, I guess, open to suggestions on how that should look. And I think secretariat will obviously have a very strong role in that because I think there's going to be a lot of coordination involved. But, yeah, there definitely does need to be a role for the MAG there as well. And I think this is where making sure people are aligned with their areas of interest and expertise will also be necessary to make sure we take advantage, full advantage of what the MAG has to offer in that regard.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Bruna?
>>BRUNA SANTOS: Let me see if I can manage to speak.
No, just to second this. I think that if we look specifically at the fragmentation track, and this being agreed as one of the topics for the main session's overarching theme and also the subject of one of the PNs, it's really important that we work together on this issue and avoid the duplication or one stealing the spotlight from the other.
So if we could maybe have a way of either like having somebody from the multistakeholder working group from the PNIF or a member of the PNIF at a main session for fragmentation, that would be a way of maybe trying -- I mean just a suggestion to try to integrate the two of them. It doesn't really need to be on this specific way, but I would see the need for that.
And also supporting Chris' point. I think the MAG is a group, we should be able to help with this, like either through the suggestion of speakers or like reviewing the content or the approach of the main sessions together with the secretariat. And this is so, yeah, just to reinforce the points already said by Chris.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you. Jorge?
>>JORGE CANCIO: Hello? Hello, everyone. I hope you hear me okay. Perhaps you even see me. Yeah, you see me, I think.
Hello, everyone. And Jorge Cancio, Swiss government for the record. Thank you for giving me the floor even if I'm not a MAG member.
I sense there's a strong consensus in the meeting of also using the main themes of the IGF for the main sessions. So I very much support that. I think that's a strong basis also for having good messages coming out of the IGF and having the main sessions as the place where the discussions coming from the different intersessional work, from the NRIs, and from the workshops on a given topic can converge and can come to the point and be discussed, and so that we can sense what is the broad consensus in the room, et cetera. And this would be the basis for the IGF messages also. So that's one point.
And as I think Bruna hinted at, this means that there's some organization needed, probably some main session organizing working groups with MAG representation, with volunteers, and especially also including volunteers from the relevant workshops or from the relevant intersessional work, at least to give them the opportunity of participating in the agenda framing of each and every main session so that the main sessions cover as well as possible all the different aspects that will be considered in the different workstreams.
So that's my second point. And of course I would be happy to serve in some of those working groups.
And finally, the third point is perhaps something that was raised by Raul Echeberria, a former MAG member, who said repeatedly, I think, in different instances that this approach may mean that the main sessions would be best placed towards the end of the IGF in Addis so that it's really also a chronological culmination of the discussions on the different workshops, et cetera, et cetera.
I leave it by that. Hope this is helpful. Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
Other comments? Questions?
I have a question for the secretariat, which is as it stands now with the facility that we have and the programming we just committed to with the workshops, how many slots do we have for main sessions?
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: I mean, what's a main session slot? Is it two-hour session slots? And should we be talking about -- I mean, there's two ways: These are the slots, let's five them up; we would like five for the main sessions, we want one for the NRIs. I don't know if we want one for anything else.
Really? DCs. So that is seven. Is there any other that we should be considering?
If not, great. I think we can make seven, yes.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Seven.
A lot of hard decisions get made so quickly.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yeah.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: This is great. Then there are -- from past years, there are guidelines about main sessions and how to program them. The question is are those guidelines still relevant or do they need to be reviewed?
That's also a question for the secretariat. I mean, you're charged with --
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: We do have the guidelines. Usually we do have MAG volunteer to come to whichever group, and it's usually derived.
Some MAG members have been in the group that's assessing a particular theme, and then they graduate to the main session, but it doesn't need to be that way. It's just that we have the seven groups or the five groups, and then we have the MAG members, I think, come in.
What has changed between the years is that sometimes it's MAG only and sometimes the MAG says they would want outside people to be in that group that's organizing. That is purely a MAG decision. You let us know and then we can open it, or keep it closed, but...
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Did that stimulate any ideas?
>>ADAM PEAKE: Yeah, I had my hand up, of course. Adam. Because I was going to agree with Chris and Bruna and others.
I think this is the right direction that we should be looking at the Global Digital Compact because that's what we've been structuring the whole year towards.
I think it would be worth having a discussion about what does the MAG think that means, because if we're going to start five separate working groups or we have five working groups designing main sessions, what's our general sort of sense of direction for them? I would -- you know, you'd think it would be some outcome that could be delivered onward to the Global Digital Compact. Therefore -- and I'm now -- that's where I'll stop with this, this is sort of what I think should happen. An example of that might be more principled based rather than narrative. So rather than a, "We think glorious things," it should be, "The principles for governance of AI should be, according to us, XYZ." "The problems with Internet fragmentation may be..."
And so you can keep it to a page or two, which can be useful input for further discussion, perhaps. And I would say the group should be open to MAG and others, not as observers, but as participants, to be clear.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: (Indiscernible - Off mic).
>>ADAM PEAKE: Yeah, they should just be participants. Yeah, so that's one sort of general idea.
The other is looking at previous years, these sessions are never finished until about two weeks before. I think that has a number of consequences. One, of course it means you don't really know what you're going to until you get there, and that is problematic because it means that the IGF will always be unfriendly to newcomers, because why would you -- People tend to go to the IGF because it's the IGF, and we want people to go to the IGF because of the content. So I think we should be looking at having things published around about two months before. And by that I'll make a suggestion which I've shared with a few people which is we have five themes. Can we think of two names, expert speakers that you'd love to go and see speak and have those people on the IGF website with a nice picture by mid-September. And this happens with many conferences these days. You know, you sort of look at the website and you've got pictures of people you're going to go and see and hear speak and interact with.
If we can just get ten anchor pictures. And we can brainstorm on names. They should be diverse. It should be probably favoring Global South over -- and women over men, et cetera, et cetera. It doesn't really matter. But if we can have that up by September, then people can look at that website and start to think I've got a description of a main session. I know who I'm going to start, with the type of people I'm going to hear speak. And it may become more attractive to people who aren't just going because we love the IGF and the multistakeholderness, but we're actually going because we want to learn, participate, and discuss, have dialogue with people of this type.
I think it would be useful to think of the IGF in a sort of more prominent way like that. So that's my thing for now.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you very much.
Does that stimulate any ideas in the rest of the crowd here?
>>TEREZA HOREJSOVA: If I may ask for the floor? My hand is up.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Tereza, you go first.
>>TEREZA HOREJSOVA: Sorry, yes. Because we don't have a chat moderator, which is unfortunate. And yeah, online participants are here, too.
Few reflections. First, I think it's an expectation kind of from the community that the main themes should have a main session, you know, so alignment there. Great.
I would rather like to talk about the modus operandi in preparing these sessions because, to be frank, sometimes there were frustrating situations last year. Adam mentioned it already. Things were happening last minute. There was not clarity in many sessions, what's going to happen that automatically resulted in some messy situations during the event itself.
So we need to see how to avoid it. Of course MAG members will need to take this more seriously, be a bit more timely in preparations. But I also think that the generous offer of some members of the community, ex-MAG members, experienced members of the community, Jorge volunteered, to use them in shaping these sessions can only be to the benefit.
So let us please consider that. And it would be good if we can, like, have a clarity this afternoon on what are the next steps, what are the expectations from the MAG members, how do we join a project team, and so on. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Amrita for the record.
I agree to what Adam says, that we could perhaps have two speakers. But we need to arrive at those two speakers. Before that, we need to have a group who has to decide upon the two speakers, not someone whom I want or someone wants but the entire group.
I think last year the process which we followed of having groups wherein we also had nonMAG members as observers and contributing to form the main theme was not a bad idea because we had more past MAG members participating who could give some ideas. So that had worked there.
But I guess there is certain new things which we can try. But, again, we may aspire to have the name by September but will we be able to achieve it is the question.
>>ADAM PEAKE: Could I just respond on that idea of two speakers? It would actually be -- I think it would have to be ten speakers and it would have to be the collective because you're looking at a balance. Of course, you are looking for, say, two experts on AI and two experts on connectivity. But it would have to be a group decision because you're trying to look at what is the attractive -- if I look at the website and I see ten faces, you're looking at something that attracts me to the whole conference. And so I wouldn't -- I would say it's the five groups actually you have to sort of not together exactly decide on who they are but it's a collective decision, if you see what I mean. They've got to work together. It's not standalone. I hope that made sense.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes, it makes sense.
Anyone else with questions, comments? Who in this group is interested in directly participating in planning a main session? That's good. That wasn't suggesting that everybody has to do it. Just measuring the delta between wanting to say something and wanting to participate.
I'm interested in your ideas about how to implement planning and programming for these main sessions, something that we can take away from this meeting today and start working on.
So I've heard a couple of suggestions relative to a number of people, what we should go looking for, for content, people, implementing the website, it being an attractive show, so to speak.
But beyond that, there's the more fundamental issues about lining out how it's going to work, what's the modality for the content, what do we need to provide for the talent, if you want to speak of it as talent, or the experts, in order to make it worth their while, in order to make sure we get a well-balanced situation.
So I'm hoping you'll think through a little bit of those issues.
And go ahead.
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Thank you very much, Chair. Karim Attoumani, MAG member, for the record.
I would like to share an experience we had with Roberto two years ago. While we -- our first year as MAG member, we worked together trying to submit a BPF proposal. And luckily it was not accepted, and we had a certain kind of challenge to work to justify it. And it let us work, and we come up at the end of the year with (indiscernible).
Later, the work we done together led to what we can note today as the PNMA.
I would like to share that we might think we can develop a topic (indiscernible) in two, three months but it's a huge work as we need to develop a content. We need to identify relevant speakers. We need to convince them to take part.
And I think we can try to involve newcomers as soon as possible on such activities, because, yes, at the end, we -- at the end of the process, we realize that as MAG member, we could not be in the process. But as we conducted it for a while by doing the research and work on that, it was very beneficial for us.
So I think that the area we can work on such intersessional session would be of benefit for people to have more time. Otherwise, we'll have to work in limited period. And I don't know if we will have the same output. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
Tereza, did you still want the floor?
>>TEREZA HOREJSOVA: No. My hand was down. I intervened earlier. It's a misunderstanding. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. Thank you.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Let Adam speak first.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Adam.
>>ADAM PEAKE: (off microphone).
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: So in order to go forward with the main sessions, should we, as the secretariat, create these five groups and we have signup sheets so people can sign up to the five groups? Once people are in those groups, they can elect a facilitator or co-facilitators, somebody, because we also need -- as Adam as said, there needs to be some coordination on the output.
I was thinking whoever is selected or elected as the facilitator, the five of them -- or if it's two, ten of them can meet and agree on sort of the outputs and we can also help as well. We can also communicate with the Tech Envoy's Office if we want. Once we agree on our outputs, just to check these are the outputs that would actually make it in nicely and easier.
Again, speaking with the ECA and the host country, we should also not -- I'm just remembering things that were discussed during the meetings, is that we should not just solely concentrate on the feedback into the Global Digital Compact. But if we can make the output dual use, so it is useful actually for people in the meeting for stakeholders, particularly in the African region and stuff like that, that would be great. So it can be, you know, dual purpose but be of the two.
So would that be a concrete way to get things started? Secretariat sets up five lists. We send the signup list. People sign up. People select their facilitators. Facilitators meet just to make sure we've got coordination amongst the five. And then we carry on? I see one thumb up.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Adam likes it.
>>MARIELZA OLIVIERA: I would just add that at least one initial meeting to kind of start the process without the fragmented approach already. So you kind of decide on what the format of this thing will be and then, you know, you go out and do your work. Just one suggestion.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. Does anybody want to add modification to the proposal? Or we adopt the proposal and set the secretariat on the path? I see no objection. So let's set the secretariat on this path to set it up, and we convene after that's done.
And an open mic at home.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: I just got corrected. It's not dual purpose. It's multipurpose.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Other than the review of the new proposed terms of reference, I think we will have covered the agenda. And I want to make sure that I'm not forgetting something that somebody is holding on to something waiting for it to come up.
>>ANJA GENGO: Can I maybe just ask for a very short time for the co-chairs of the PNMA because we swapped the agenda items and they were not informed before. So Sonia and Giacomo are online.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Somebody is having dinner or something.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Ucha, can you please make sure your mic is muted.
Okay. It's muted now. Thanks.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes. So we wanted to have a little review, presentation of PNMA, meaningful access. Who was going to do that? Is it Sonia?
>>SONIA JORGE: I am here. Can you all hear me?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes, thank you.
>>SONIA JORGE: Hello, Paul. Very nice to see you.
Hello, everyone. Thank you for giving us a moment to share the work of the policy network on meaningful access, which I'm very pleased and honored to represent here today.
I don't know if, Anja, if you have the slides. I don't have to put up the slides. I will just go over the details.
We just wanted to share with all of you as part of this section not just the work of the PNMA but a little bit of an overview of what we are planning to do for this year.
So just to clarify so that everyone is aware, the PNMA has been established with three goals. One, to tackle the challenges of achieving universal meaningful connectivity and access to the Internet by focusing on urgent areas that need multistakeholder attention and the very important aspect of the items of the IGF community.
We also want to document good practices and case studies and experiences that inform concrete actions and interventions to advance universal meaningful access.
And we want the policy network to also be a space and a group that can facilitate collaboration, partnership, and networking among the different actors from all of the stakeholder groups interested in the topic, including those involved in the Global Digital Compact, the digital cooperation efforts, and many others that are taking place.
In 2022 -- and I want to note that the group has started in 2021.
I apologize if there is a bit of background noise. I'm very sorry. But unfortunately there's work outside my house, and it just started being very loud. I apologize for that.
In terms of the focus areas for 2022, they build on the work that the policy network had done in 2021, which was quite successful and very useful as we brought all of the different stakeholders together to focus on these issues.
And so I just wanted to highlight what those are and to note that because we didn't want to replicate any work from other groups in other fora, including many already at the IGF, we have refocused on areas that needed additional attention, so not areas that we were already working in other spaces.
And so those three areas include with respect to connectivity, the first area, elements of infrastructure deployment and investment as well as new business models that can help move forward universal meaningful connectivity.
The second area of work is on digital inclusion with a special attention to local content in local languages as well as overall accessibility and multilingualism. In fact, you might remember that last year in Poland, we had a couple of successful sessions on these topics, including on multilingualism which we learned a lot and realized that a lot more work needed to be done.
The third area focus is capacity development, especially as different countries and different regions require additional and more intentional technical skill training and development to be available in their countries to secure a digital society and digital economies.
So just a couple of other points before I close, you understand our focus areas and the focus of the group. I just wanted to note that as far as our steps of working these next few months, we are focusing right now on finalizing our work plan and methodological framework which is under preparation. And the draft will be shared with our policy network later this month where we will have a review and evaluation meeting at the end of July so that our colleagues and those who are interested in this work can be informed of the details.
And so we welcome all of you who are interested to join us, not just to learn about the importance of meaningful access but also about the different elements of the work that the policy network is focusing on.
We definitely want -- and I want to reiterate this point, that, again, we don't want to repeat work. We don't want to duplicate. We want to add value as a policy network. We want to make sure that all the work that we produce and develop as a group at the IGF is productive, is positive, adds value, and adds knowledge but most importantly that it's also very much action-oriented.
And so the outcome of our policy network will be a policy brief that we are already drafting an outline to share with our group. And we'll be focusing on several pieces of information and analysis that we'll do throughout the year, but very much focused on action and will be action-oriented in its outcomes.
So that's really important to us. And I hope all of that makes sense. I'm happy to answer any questions.
I'm very pleased to be part of this policy network and having being trusted as the co-chair with Giacomo, who I understand is also on the call. And we welcome all of you to join us and to support the work of the group.
So thank you so much. And, again, here for any questions, if you need.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you very much. Is there any questions for Sonia? Commentary? Concerns? Excellent. Thank you very much for the presentation.
>>SONIA JORGE: You're very welcome. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. So I think the one last thing I'd like to put on the agenda before opening up to any other business is a review of the new draft of our terms of reference. The secretariat's going to put it on the screen side by side with the old -- with the currently existing terms of reference so we can walk through it and explain what's changed and then answer any questions and, hopefully, receive consensus.
As a general introduction, the reason we undertook to do this was that the -- the existing terms of reference go back many years and there's been a lot of change in the environment since then. And with the expanded activity in the U.N. system as a whole, directly lining up with some of the work that's been done by the IGF, it seemed appropriate to revise the terms of reference to be a little bit more explicit about the relationships with different parts of the U.N., et cetera.
So I don't know if everybody can read that. I know I can't. But I'll try to explain what we did.
So the beginning of the document -- beginning of the document sets out essentially what the MAG is for, how it came into -- into force, and what the responsibility would be for the MAG.
So the first -- the first thing that changed was to add some language regarding the identification of needs. So trying to make sure that this organization is looking out for the needs in the market relative to understanding directions related to policy.
There's basically four thematic changes here. The second one is adding language regarding participation requirements and the expectations of members of the MAG. And the third one adds language to state that the MAG will advise on the purpose of the IGF in addition to everything else. And the reason for that is because, over time, the purpose of the IGF as an organization and as a platform, this change allows for the flexibility to remain relevant as the world turns.
Then the last one is adding language regarding the direct relationship to other U.N. activities. And while I thought that this would work in a side-by-side review, I can see that the font size is not going to work.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: But it's been sent.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So does everybody have the copy that -- If everybody has it, then we can walk through it piece by piece.
So maybe the most efficient way to do this is if you all have a copy of it. It's only four pages. So why don't we take the time to actually read the four pages. And if you have questions about specifics, then we can dive into them.
>> It has just been sent out (indiscernible).
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So you're all going to get it in just a moment. But those were fundamentally just the four changes.
Let me know when you've finished reading.
Has everybody had a chance to finish? Anybody still need extra time?
Does anyone have a question or comment?
Adam. Big surprise.
>>ADAM PEAKE: Why isn't the leadership panel mentioned? No.
Two things. One is the -- is the Common Agenda an evergreen document that should be in the terms of reference? That's a question because I have no idea. But if it's not going to last too long, then you can -- it's probably enough in that section already referencing U.N. work. Otherwise, might as well keep it more evergreen. But I don't know where Common Agenda fits in the life of the U.N. If it's a 25-year plan, then keep it there.
And the other is about responsibilities. Is it worth putting in a footnote that says, "anticipate very significant and essential work during June and July," you know, when we -- a mention of workload. And the essential workload is really the reviewing of workshop and other proposals, because that's probably at the heart of what the MAG does. So a warning that if you take this on, you are making a significant commitment of time in June and July.
That might be a footnote.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: That's a good point.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Adam, just to respond to you -- Amrita for the record. While the load happens in June and July, a MAG member is supposed to be participative throughout the year unless there are some circumstances when he or she cannot participate. So we would not just want people to be active June and July and not be there throughout the year.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: I think it's -- I think it's fair to make some kind of notice that there is a significant workload. And I tried to do that in a subtle way towards the end. But I think -- I think we can accommodate some form of expected workload or append additional language.
Other comments or concerns?
>>TALANT SULTANOV: Thank you, Chair. Talant Sultanov.
There is a reference of paragraph 72 of Tunis Agenda. It will be helpful if maybe there is a link in the document or maybe a footnote or small annex just to kind of quickly reference.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. Sure. Makes sense.
>>KARIM ATTOUMANI MOHAMED: Thank you, Chair. I have a quick comment on the section 5, appointment and duration of terms.
I wonder if the secretariat might update us on the early evaluation of the level of engagement and active contribution to the work of MAG. I know that's -- the activity of the MAG is really challenging, and personally I know some colleague who does not take part on the meeting online. We know we had a very laudy evaluation of our workshop proposal.
So I think there are a lot of people who would like to join the MAG, and I don't know if this evaluation is made every year, but I'd like to know if something is done, how do those who are in the list of current MAG, we -- personally, I don't know for a while now what -- how it's happened. Please.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, I mean we do do it. It's not an exact science, and we are appreciative that there are certain live events that do happen, you know. You might get sick, you might have a sick relative that you have to look after, et cetera.
But -- And also, sometimes it's also a matter of culture, that sometimes you're not the one who is speaking out, et cetera, but you are attending the groups, et cetera.
So we do look at all of those. I mean, the most definite ones, of course, those no-shows. Basically we know we've just seen their name and they may have attended the intro session, and there's absolutely no show whatsoever without. And then of course those are out. And there are a couple of them this year and we're going to drop off.
And then of course there are those who don't do some major activities, like the evaluation, et cetera, without giving an excuse. I mean, it doesn't even have to be a -- a huge, you know, "here's my doctor's thing that I was in traction for four --" no. "I'm sorry, I can't do this because I have this" or have that.
We know, we understand that happens. But if you can't even take that, then of course you're on the line as well. But there's no -- we're not going to be saying, "Okay, you have to attend 25 out of 30 meetings," et cetera.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Marielza.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Yes, thank you. Marielza for the record.
Just quickly, you may wish to add something about potentially becoming kind of an alumni. And, you know, it's not an official term, so I don't know whether it goes into the official terms of reference but something about later on using this expertise, after you finish your terms, to support capacity development or to become part of this network that helps mentor and build capacities on newcomers and even new MAG members perhaps, you know.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: I think that's interesting. Maybe you could say a little more, because I'm trying to think about out how you could structure a comment like that.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Yeah. I don't know. I mean, I was just thinking that you have these people who come and learn by being part of the MAG, you know, how the IGF works, how it -- you know, what it produces, what are the processes, so on, so forth. So once you have gone through that, you leave out and take that expertise out the door with you.
Instead, we should be finding a way to retain that expertise in order to mentor the ones that are just coming in, you know. So maybe it's a -- it's a kind of a circle of life kind of thing, you know, in which the people who are leaving the process, they actually serve one additional term, not as a MAG member anymore but as a alumni whose task it is to help, you know, bring in new voices to the MAG or mentor the ones that have been appointed who are new to the process, or help to become -- you know, to raise awareness about the IGF and its purposes among its network of stakeholders and so on. Or maybe even build capacities of speakers and IGF participants who are, you know, new to the process themselves.
So there is a variety of roles and tasks that somebody who could become -- who could take on this kind of a -- of a task. And it's something that the MAG has not done before, and it would be an innovation, I think, that would harness this expertise, you know, and use it in a way that benefits everyone.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Chris?
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Thanks, Paul.
And just so -- a couple comments because first I want to respond to Marielza's suggestion there, because I think it's a good point. And I'm looking at the document and thinking about how you can bring something like that into scope for something that is about the MAG, not ex-MAG members.
But perhaps we could add something like to the MAG responsibilities, the individual member responsibilities about developing and maintaining a community of expertise, which could include former MAG members. So that sort of places at least an element of responsibility on the MAG themselves to sort of develop this and build that. To cultivate, yeah, exactly, exactly.
The other point I have, and you have my -- so I was involved in the group doing some work on this. Thank you for that, Paul, but I was also very late in providing a lot of my responses, so apologies for that. But I know that was some discussion in the comments on the Google doc about trying to provide an indication of time commitments involved. And I was wondering if that could be -- I'm not sure whether that was discounted because it was considered not really feasible.
I mean, I think I added last night -- so again, very late -- a suggestion something along the lines of a baseline of two to three hours per month per MAG member, but significant increases around the time of workshop assessment and face-to-face meetings and the IGF event itself.
But I think, you know, given the concerns we have about MAG members who join and maybe aren't in a position to actually step up and do the work, giving that kind of practical indication of what kind of a commitment's involved would be useful.
I think it was Tereza's suggestion, actually, in the first place, so I should give credit there, but I'm very much supportive of it.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Yes, thank you. I like the suggestion that, you know, MAG alumnis can kind of help to build the culture, but since it's voluntary, it may be an aspirational thing for us, but we can't kind of push for it because if they do it, great. And there are some -- We have that 80/20% rule. 20 people -- percent is engaged even now, ex-MAG members. But I don't think we would be able to put it into the document. We can't manage the existing people itself.
So in terms of -- you know, I come with a different perspective that MAG members are nominated or self-nominated. They should be knowing what they're coming in for. They accept the terms of reference and come in, so I think it is a responsibility to give that kind of time. While we should -- we could mention the kind of time required, but we also have to have a caveat that if required, it may need more than two hours.
So I think we need to be careful with the words. We may say that the workload would increase when the evaluation of proposals come. Perhaps the months we may not say because currently we go by this cycle. We never know if the cycle changes one year.
So the words should be carefully drafted. That's about it.
But I think they should be really serious if they're nominating themselves. When they're short listed and they're accepting, I think it's a commitment, and people should abide by their commitments.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. Other questions or comments? Go ahead.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Thank you. Marielza, UNESCO.
Just to clarify that you shouldn't put in the terms of reference that somebody would become automatically an alumni but the MAG itself will foster a network and keep those interested in -- serving in that capacity as a -- you know, harnessing their expertise to serve the community. It's kind of a role for the MAG, not for the individual. And if the individual volunteers, great. If not, great as well. Nobody has the obligation.
But it's a possibility that hasn't been used before.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So would you be interested in drafting some language that will fit for that particular --
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: When you list the responsibilities of the MAG --
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Right.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: One element, let's say, creating and fostering a network of former MAG participants so that -- for those who wish to become alumni, to serve in that capacity as alumni, to share their expertise or something like that. But one additional responsibility, short, simple, something like that.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Other questions, comments?
Everybody likes it? Everybody is asleep? Concerns? There's no guarantee that these terms of reference will go forward because we don't get to approve our own terms of reference on behalf of the U.N. agencies, I don't believe. So I think we have to -- we have to do this, make it a proposal, and have it properly approved.
So what I'm hearing is primarily one comment on making sure that we somehow communicate the level of work that might be required and one comment that is about establishing more or less a post-MAG track, responsibility for producing or fostering the community, right?
Is there anything else that is of concern? Chris.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Just since we're here, one other point that I think -- I'm not sure who added it. But was in that first -- it was me. Pardon me.
In that first point of the responsibilities, we have identify emerging Internet governance issues, blah, blah, blah. And I had put in Internet -- "identify and promote engagement with emerging Internet governance issues." I think that's probably -- covers a little bit of what we were talking about earlier in terms of it's important not just as MAG we identify these issues but also that we --
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Do something.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: -- find ways to actually ensure that they are reflected in the IGF itself. That's the only one of my late changes that I'll push out.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So you'll send the language. Okay.
Then I would ask that this group declares a consensus on this revision of the document with the three changes we just talked about.
Can we identify this as a consensus?
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: I still have concerns about the second change being incorporated, thinking of MAG alumni to do things.
Whether we have them -- we can actually ask for it. Can we exert that influence is something which I have a question on.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: I actually agree with you in terms of whether or not and how we should communicate the workload given the professionalism we're expecting from the people that participate.
But in -- but yet, I don't feel it's harmful to let people have some imagination of what this might require of them.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: No, I'm not talking about the time line. I'm okay with that. But I'm not okay with trying to look at the alumni aspect. That could be organic, whether we have the mandate over alumni.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: I see what you're saying.
If I understood Marielza's proposal, it wouldn't be exerting jurisdiction over people who were not on the MAG. And it wouldn't be -- it wouldn't be the people, it would be the MAG itself would have a new responsibility to foster this sort of village or growth -- outgrowth of professionals that would be -- so that the obligation of the MAG would be to foster the community as opposed to --
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Don't we do it in the working groups or the BPFs or the DCs? We are already doing it. The ex-MAG members are there to do. For example, in the working group strategy, they are mostly ex-MAG or even in the DCs. So why do we need it there?
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: Sorry, I put my hand up to respond to Amrita.
I think what I don't see in here is the responsibility to foster community and bringing these people in. There's obligation to be involved and drive the working groups, but maybe it would be useful to have a slightly more abstract responsibility of build a community, build a sort of network of expertise.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Yeah, so the community could be outside the MAG also, right? We keep it as "community."
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: It's the responsibility of the MAG to build it.
>>AMRITA CHOUDHURY: Yes, ex-MAG but community, absolutely. Building community is important.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: And you could say "including ex members," if you wanted to.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So, Marielza, would you...
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: (off microphone).
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: I can send some language through. I'm just drafting something here and see if it works.
>>MAYA PLENTZ: It's Maya Plentz from The U.N. Brief. I think that should be included because it's a very important proposal.
Of course, no obligation for the alumni but I think many of them would love the opportunity to continue to be involved in some way, not giving a lot of time but maybe help fund-raising but certainly amplifying the messages in the work of the IGF.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: So a concern is that this puts on -- it has the potential to put an obligation on DESA as the host for the IGF, that we put on an obligation of IGF to foster community that is not part of what DESA's mission or mandate is -- thinking randomly -- and that could be a concern.
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: So just looking at this, under responsibilities, Number 9 is already "foster multistakeholder participation and collaboration at the annual IGF meetings and intersessional work."
If we change -- if we added a comma there and said "including cultivating and developing a community of expertise," something.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: That satisfies the group?
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: It's a bit off the top of my head, but it currently says "foster multistakeholder participation and collaboration at the annual IGF meetings and intersessional work."
I'm suggesting add on to the end of that "and cultivate a community of expertise, including community" -- I don't know. "That could include ex-MAG members." I will try to play with the language.
>>MAYA PLENTZ: So it is in the mission of DESA after all. It's just their actual way of implementing that mission. When you raise the concern that could be additional work, it's part of the mission. So it's just the way it's being implemented. It has a concrete outcome. The alumni network, I think it's important to signal.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: We have Wai Min in the queue.
>>WAI MIN KWOK: Thanks, Mr. Chairman. Can you hear me?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes, thank you.
>>WAI MIN KWOK: My apologies for the background noise.
So for the record, this is Wai Min Kwok from UN DESA. I'd just like to say we also look at these terms of reference with references to other U.N. committees and commissions.
So typically, we do not extend the terms of reference to beyond so-called alumni or the former, because that complicates matters. But that does not put aside the fact that this can be actually done. We know there are actually many active and engaged former MAG members.
I just would like to put in caution here that we should not complicate these terms of reference, because the terms of reference is for the current MAG. And it has to be -- I think it's actually better to have a more focused document.
But I fully support, and I think it's been said once, once a MAG member always a MAG member. I think this is actually what the U.N. system and also everybody else appreciates.
I'd just like to say that because it's actually the authority documents that the MAG members should look at in terms of (indiscernible), responsibilities, functions, and mandates. Those in a way option, nonobligate items, we should be careful about our language.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay, thank you.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Just very quickly, the record recorded Maya Plentz as Marielza Oliveira, so just for the correction later in the transcript. Just to make sure she gets the credit for her point. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Any other commentary? Questions? I can't hear.
>>MAYA PLENTZ: It's Maya Plentz. I'm on the list, too,as a stakeholder, private sector stakeholder
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Oh, okay.
Can we leave this with Chris to do the final wordsmithing? Circulate tonight or tomorrow, over the weekend, and can I ask -- can I ask that everybody review the draft that Chris produces and assent to the language and report your assent to the language by Wednesday?
So I just want to make sure everybody is clear on the ask. I'm asking that Chris do the final language, circulate it, everybody read it, and positively assent to the language.
>> (off microphone).
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yes, in the private list.
>> (off microphone).
>>CHRIS BUCKRIDGE: I think we're hopefully addressing that. Certainly, I absolutely took the point of we're not putting any further obligations on either former MAG members or DESA. It's purely obligations of the MAG itself. So I think as long as we're very clear on that, I hope to reach some sort of consensus; but you'll see the text.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. So this action item is in hand and will be completed by next Wednesday. And then we can pass it off to DESA to review.
And now we go to any other business? Does anybody have any other business?
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Thank you, Marielza for the record, UNESCO.
I made reference to an Internet regulation conference that we plan to carry out next year. It's in February 21 to 23, 2023. And I just got the approved concept note. So I just wanted to share very quickly so that you can contact your -- start making plans to be part of it. It's called Internet for Democracy, Regulating Digital Platforms for Information as a Public Good.
And then the issue is that, you know, we have disinformation, hate speech, conspiracy theories, the fact that truth now lies behind paywalls, and so on, so forth. And so maybe the effect have been tremendous in our democracies.
So the idea is, for the conference, during these three days to develop through multistakeholder consultations a model regulatory framework for the digital platforms to secure information as a public good by projecting -- protecting freedom of expression and other human rights.
The idea is then to have this conversation, help promote Our Common Agenda, including the Digital Compact as well, and ensure that we take forward what's called the Windhoek+30 Declaration on Information As a Public Good.
It's going to take place at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, and the idea is to discuss what issues should be part of this kind of regulatory thrust, what kinds of regulations we're talking about, because, you know, regulation by government is the not the only one. You know, you have terms of reference, self-regulation, you have co-regulation, you have this and that. So what mechanism? By whom and how? Regulators, co-regulations, companies, self-regulation, multistakeholder regulation, and so on so forth. And for what purpose? Human rights accountability, multilingualism online, digital empowerment. Whatever it is that this multistakeholder group would like to do.
So we would certainly like to count on the participation of everyone, and for you to, you know, become a champion and inform.
And the deliverables are advance draft of a model regulatory framework, and kicking off an international community of practice for independent regulators who are engaged in sharing good practices on how to effectively regulate these top platforms while observing human rights and international law.
So this is the point. So I wanted to share that so you could, you know, put that on your calendars already for next year. And consider you are all invited. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>MARIELZA OLIVEIRA: Yeah, just a date, February 21 to 23, 2023.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Anybody else with any other business?
>>ADAM PEAKE: Oh, yeah. No, it's because it's about the hybrid stuff, so I should close off with this.
Tereza and I suggested that there should be contact with the workshop and other session organizers about learning from each other about what hybrid is, what experiences we have, what's working well, and then trying to build it into the experience for the workshops and other sessions that they're developing.
Question to the MAG. If you agree with this, I think we agree but I'm not entirely sure, or not certain, how do we go about it? Because it's can't -- Tereza and I can't do it alone. We're going to need help. Luis I'm sure will be doing the technical side of this, but it is more about how it works in the, you know, operationalized sort of sense of it, I suppose.
So how do we make it work? Would you help, please? Not least just talking to the hybrid working group about your experiences going to conferences. I mean, you can tell us how awful the ICANN meeting was, except it wasn't. It was actually brilliant. But -- And what works and what's not working. Because it will -- it will help us make sure that the meeting in Addis goes well. So it's quite important.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Okay. So you're asking for comments --
>>ADAM PEAKE: Help.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: -- and help. People should email you directly?
>>ADAM PEAKE: Discuss on the MAG.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Discuss on the MAG list? Okay.
And we've been joined by the minister. And thank you for your participation and your sponsorship. And invite you to make any comments you'd like to make.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Any closing remarks.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Closing remarks.
>>HURIA ALI MAHDI: Finally or now?
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Yeah, now.
>>HURIA ALI MAHDI: Okay. Thank you so much. Good morning, all. I am very glad to meet you again. I had some personal business. That's why I went. I thought I'd join you after lunch. Unfortunately, I couldn't make it, but I don't want to miss to say goodbye 'til we meet again. That's why I came this time.
I was very glad for your very active participation. And shows us you are very committed for this forum.
Hopefully we'll see you in a very soon time in Addis. So you are making -- making it the forum very relevant, and hopefully it will lead to the very successful event in Ethiopia. That's what we are believing. Your inputs are very constructive, and will include in our day-to-day activities while we are preparing the event in Ethiopia, because they are very useful, all the comments.
So we're very glad to have contact with you all at any time. It's always open to discuss, to communicate, to suggest on the event. And we believe that we all make it very successful event and unforgettable and historical event, even, it will be in Ethiopia.
You know that we have some challenges, so we are making our high effort to manage all the challenges. At this time, things are settling, and as I have tried to assure you in the previous time, Addis Ababa is the safest place to organize any kind of workshop, international conferences and meetings. So I want you to feel free. We know that we are the one who can challenge or tackle the misinformations and disinformations together. This platform is the most important platform to manage these kind of challenges, especially for a kind of country like Ethiopia and other countries, because things are not tell as the fact what's going on on the ground.
So I want you to be free and to come to see the origin of humanity: Ethiopia. And so you will see many different historical places, and we are preparing a lot of side events to stay -- your stay very enjoyable time in Ethiopia. This is what I can say.
Hopefully we'll meet on the other meeting with a lot of progress on the event. So thank you so much for now.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: And thank you very much.
And Mr. Secretariat, would you have any final words for us?
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: I'd just like to thank you all. I think this was a really, really consultive meeting. We went through quite a lot. And I think we've accomplished quite a lot. I think we're in a good footing for the preparations of the IGF 2022 meetings. So thank you all. Thanks to the team. Thank you to the Chair. Thank you to the scribes. And thank you to those online. I know, you know, odd times at night and early in the morning. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: And thank all of you for making it all happen.
So meeting is adjourned.
>> And clearly thank you to the chair and to the secretariat as well. Amazing job. Thank you.
>>CHAIR MITCHELL: Thank you.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Can we take our seats, please.