[Wg-mwp] Comments on WG-MWP work and proposal on IGF outputs

Anupam Agrawal anupam.agrawal at tcs.com
Mon Nov 13 23:59:10 EST 2017

I will agree that the resources are overstretched and overlaps should be 
worked out to make the optimal usage of resources. 

Further, ICC BASIS is as representative of its membership only which is 
accessible through fee based system.  So the question raised on "the rough 
consensus" model as a non-accountable model can only be termed as limited 
view of the membership of ICC BASIS and should not be related to the whole 
business segment. The limited engagement of the business community in the 
IGF has been continuously my area of concern and there should be efforts 
towards making it more engaging. 

Best Regards, 
Anupam Agrawal 

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From:   THOMAS-RAYNAUD Elizabeth <elizabeth.thomas-raynaud at iccwbo.org>
To:     Jeremy Malcolm <jmalcolm at eff.org>, "wg-mwp at intgovforum.org" 
<wg-mwp at intgovforum.org>
Date:   09-11-2017 22:52
Subject:        Re: [Wg-mwp] Comments on WG-MWP work and proposal on IGF 
Sent by:        "Wg-mwp" <wg-mwp-bounces at intgovforum.org>

In advance of the next discussion on this, I’d like to address some of the 
points in the remarks further to what Timea posted. 
We cannot support going forward on this model of ‘rough consensus’ and its 
application by Jeremy in this case highlights exactly why – it begs the 
question what accountability is that statement based on? Certainly not one 
we feel that people reasonably expect in the MS-model. Outputs created and 
endorsed in this proposed fashion, risk repelling business and governments 
that are already underrepresented and for whom IGF is one of many venues 
they engage in on policy matters. Business and governments and even 
technical sector are underrepresented in every or almost every 
intersessional activity already undertaken in the pursuit of ‘tangible 
Our point is not to block work but not say yes to everything and to 
continue to overwhelm ourselves with more and more parallel efforts when 
we haven’t got the ones already started in a place to serve the goal. It 
makes no sense to pursue more and more before putting in processes that 
correct the flaws and notable imbalances. Otherwise talking about 
processes for making outputs ‘endorsed’ as MS IGF outputs is academic. 
We currently fail to see an unaccountable ‘rough consensus’ as the road to 
get there but when the time comes to talk about it, we think the community 
should be available and engaged. As is clear from the low participation in 
the working group discussion on this, that is not the case – people are 
It is a concern to business stakeholders represented by ICC BASIS that 
this proposal has been detracting the focus of this group rather than 
addressing the issue of particular concern in the WSIS review 
(underrepresented populations) and other important existential priorities 
targeted for this working group (sustainable funding, venues etc). That is 
the work many of us signed up to the group to address. As Timea pointed 
out, proposals with CSTD, retreat process legitimacy are being deliberated 
on still in the IGF Improvements WG and letting this proposal that does 
not reflect that level of representative input and deliberation jump that 
queue is not where business feels this working group should be investing 
its focus and the opportunity cost for IGF of doing so is high.
As many know, ICC BASIS is not a person or one business perspective, we 
are representing business voices across the membership and the reason we 
took longer than you wished for us to respond to you is because we have a 
consultative process - gathering input from others, formulating a common 
view and sharing it again to be accountable and making sure it was 
reflective of the various perspectives. I realise that it’s more 
impressive to have multiple members speak directly to reinforce the same 
message but the fact is companies engage organizations like ours because 
they don’t have the bandwidth to cover all fronts. Also many companies 
would not know or engage if we didn’t make the effort to reach out and 
interact with them to raise awareness and importance of this work. It is 
unreasonable to move to decision by ‘rough consensus’ where that depends 
on who is in the room or on the call with no standards for representation 
or balance. If this is the practice going forward, we can predict that 
those governments and business with limited resources to devote and much 
to risk by being counted even when unable to be present would rather 
disengage than the contrary. That would not only make IGF more vulnerable 
but also less legitimate. This working group is what we pressed for in the 
first MAG as a vehicle to work together on making IGF stronger in a time 
where that is critical.
I know that latter interest is one we share so I look forward to this 
group discussing how best to work from that common interest and go 
Kind regards,
International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)
Project Director, ICC Business Action to Support the Information Society 
Senior Policy Executive, Digital Economy
From: Wg-mwp [mailto:wg-mwp-bounces at intgovforum.org] On Behalf Of Jeremy 
Sent: 07 November 2017 07:35
To: wg-mwp at intgovforum.org
Subject: Re: [Wg-mwp] Comments on WG-MWP work and proposal on IGF outputs
On 6/11/17 9:08 am, SUTO Timea wrote:

In our opinion, it is premature to ask the WG-MWP to work on the proposal 
put forward. We view it as rather a possible solution offered in response 
to some of the recommendations currently being evaluated by WG-IMP that 
call for more “tangible outcomes”.  In our understanding, discussions on 
this proposal are out of place in that it would add new work items  and 
detract from the important work the WG-MWP should address as a priority – 
notably contributing to the strategic deployment of existing activities. 
For this reason we suggest the proposal should rather  be discussed 
sequentially following the assessment of the WG-IMP and considered in view 
of all other proposals and recommendations already made to improve the IGF 
by exploring “tangible outcomes”. 

Even so, there are some people who want to get working on it now.  There 
is no harm in them doing so.  In fact, it is probably better that work 
begin on it now, so that the option paper is ready to be presented once it 
is ready for the working group to begin to address it sequentially.

Discussing this proposal in WG-MWP not only overlaps with the work of 
WG-IMP, but also circumvents the mandate and work of WG-IMP and creates a 
scenario where this particular proposal is leapfrogging others already 
made in the past years through open and collaborative channels.

I don't think it's quite accurate to characterise it as a "particular 
proposal" that is "leapfrogging others".  Rather than being a single 
proposal as this suggests, it's an attempt to consider in very broad terms 
a range of possible activities, approaches, or methodologies that we 
*aren't* currently using... to add to the consideration of those we 
already are.

Other than from ICC BASIS it was my sense of the last two meetings that we 
had a rough consensus in favour of at least doing that much.  It had 
seemed, after so long, that we were finally advancing in the level of 
ambition of what we could even *discuss*.  It would be a shame if this 
discussion were to be blocked.

Jeremy Malcolm
Senior Global Policy Analyst
Electronic Frontier Foundation
jmalcolm at eff.org
Tel: 415.436.9333 ext 161
:: Defending Your Rights in the Digital World ::
Public key: https://www.eff.org/files/2016/11/27/key_jmalcolm.txt
PGP fingerprint: 75D2 4C0D 35EA EA2F 8CA8 8F79 4911 EC4A EDDF 1122
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