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May 4, 2015 at 3:17 PM
ISOC Submission -‐ NMI Consultation on the draft Terms of Reference of its Coordination Council
The Internet Society is actively engaged in global Internet governance discussions and it values opportunities for multistakeholder discussions and consultations on the evolution of the Internet governance ecosystem, as well as on new initiatives. We welcome the opportunity given to the Internet community to comment on the draft terms of reference of the NETmundial Initiative (NMI) Coordination Council.
In line with our commitment to consult our members on critical Internet governance issues, the Internet Society conducted a survey on Internet governance in February 2015 that included questions on NMI. The survey attracted over 800 participants.
This approach followed the statement (http://www.internetsociety.org/news/internet-society-statement-netmundial-initiative) issued by our Board in November 2014, asking ISOC to convene a dialogue on this matter.
In the same spirit, we consulted our community on the draft terms of reference of the NMI Coordination Council. As a contribution to this consultation we would like to share the ISOC Internet Governance Survey Report with the NMI organizers (see link below), as well as the following comments and suggestions.
At first sight, we are pleased that NMI will not be a policy-‐setting body, and we believe the initiative should maintain this trajectory. However, it seems the initiative may be overlapping with other efforts, especially with regards to existing capacity building initiatives.
Furthermore, we reiterate the points made in the joint statement (http://www.internetsociety.org/news/joint-statement-isoc-icann-meeting) from the ISOC/ICANN meeting held on 17 December 2014, where the ISOC attendees, the IAB and IETF chairs questioned the need for a Coordination Council. They would have
In addition, we echo the statement made by our Board in November 2014 “that there is no single, global platform that can serve to coordinate, organize or govern all the Internet issues that may arise”. They would have rather seen “the structure defined after setting the terms of reference and scope of the work.” They felt indeed that “more work needs to be done by NMI and with the various communities involved.”
In this sense, we encourage NMI leaders to support existing bottom-‐up, global and local Internet governance initiatives, such as the Internet Governance Forum (IGF). As the global IGF kick-‐starts work on its 2015 Best Practices and inter-‐sessional work on “Connecting the Next Billion”, it seems that NMI resources could usefully support these efforts.
The Internet Society is committed to supporting the IGF and we encourage all stakeholders to engage in preparations whether at the local or global level.
ISOC Internet Governance Survey Report: http://www.internetsociety.org/doc/internet-governance-survey-2015
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May 4, 2015 at 2:09 PM
• NMI efforts to address exiting gaps in policy development in IG space are desired and welcome. More details on the process and nature of engagement with other institutions on these lines is sought, especially with NMI denying active participation in policy setting as highlighted in block 1 of ‘Scope of Activities’.
May 4, 2015 at 2:08 PM
• Advancing multistakeholder model for more inclusion, especially from the developing world, would lead to active representation of community interests and better awareness levels. It will be worth highlighting if such activities will be limited to regional IGF or include other platforms as well.
• More clarity on scope of activities is desired to understand whether wider issues such as privacy, cybersecurity, cybercrime, cyber laws, international treaties and laws etc. will also be included in addition to critical internet resource allocation, DNS Security, etc.
• Role that NMI envisages as a neutral clearinghouse is not very clear from the above statement, especially with NMI not working on policy setting in IG space. More clarity on clearing house function processes and its relation with feeding that work into other institutions is sought
• Will NMI platform for diverse actors also act as platform for inter-governmental (eg: bilterals, treaties etc.) or industry-industry (B2B) engagements on IG matters?
May 4, 2015 at 2:07 PM
• NMI’s plan to complement and support work of all existing work in IG underway is appreciable, with so much happening simultaneously that it becomes difficult to track and keep one updated with all developments. Does NMI intend to try and act as a coordinator between all existing platforms? Also will it try and put in processes in place to identify duplication of work, and consolidation of work currently undergoing at other platforms?
• Will IGF activities at National and Regional level be supported as well?
• Till date, no concrete exercise has been undertaken to completely identify and segregate all the technical and policy work in IG space. Any activity undertaken by NMI in this respect would be highly appreciable.
• As highlighted in NETmundial outcome document, the multistakeholder definition says that “for operating on the issues and development, should be built on democratic, multistakeholder processes, ensuring the meaningful and accountable participation of all stakeholders, including governments, the private sector, civil society, the technical community, the academic community and users. The respective roles and responsibilities of stakeholders should be interpreted in a flexible manner with reference to the issue under discussion.”
Block 2 statement could be appropriately amended to include the points highlighted in definition, especially regarding determining roles and responsibilities of stakeholders.
May 4, 2015 at 2:05 PM
• NMI objective of establishing a new platform to catalyze practical cooperation between all stakeholders on IG matters could yield fructifying results if successfully implemented as other platforms have not been able to actualize it in practice. In that respect, NMI can carry an exercise to identify all practical challenges and propose solutions to overcome those challenges in IG.
• It would be in interest of global Internet community if NMI undertakes an exercise to revisit NETmundial Principles for a wider consultation and debate by the global community, for possible expansion and amendments, before active endorsement. After it gathers global consensus, advancing implementation of NETmundial Principles including its advocacy for adoption by other IG bodies, federal governments and other stakeholders can follow.
• NMI efforts to try and enable opportunities for collaboration, and act as bridge for all stakeholders, are appreciable. More details on how it will be actualized need to be enumerated especially to manage varied and at times conflicting views of the stakeholders.
May 4, 2015 at 2:04 PM
• NETmundial principles are also endorsed by ICANN in its latest Strategic Review document. An exercise by NMI to gather more inputs and build consensus on the ‘Principles’ and their binding definitions for larger adoption by global Internet community would be appreciable.