WSIS Civil Society Working Group

on Information Networks Governance



Group Formation Announcement

Monday 03 September 2007. The formal announcement of the group formation was made by its founding President : Louis Pouzin, during the IGF Open Consultations ( transcripts ) on Monday 3 September 2007, at the Palais des Nations, in Geneva.

Thank you Mr Chairman,
I wish to use this opportunity to announce the creation of a new working group in the Civil Society. This group is called Civil Society Working Group on Information Networks Governance.
Why create another working group on Internet governance? Indeed, there is already a group called Internet Governance Caucus. From our observations there is in this group a strong presence of the Internet community, "Internity" for short. They have ties with some governments, with the business sector, with NGO's, and with the domain name milk cow.
Quite a few people in the Civil Society do not share these interests. As a result there is no majority for a consensus on significant reforms of Internet governance. It appears that it would be better to draw clearer lines, let the Internet community lobby for its own turf, and have a Civil Society Working Group with a distinct agenda.
What agenda ? To identify, and promote enablers of societal development, taking full account of existing diversities, e.g. culture, language, geography, political system, etc. To adjust governance structures to people's needs, rather than the opposite. In short, implement the Tunis Agenda.
What structures do we propose ? This working group is now created, as of 3rd September 2007. It is international. A chairman, or coordinator, whatever term the group prefers, is rotated every 6th month. The 1st one is myself. The group is multilingual, starting with English, French, Spanish, and other languages when it becomes practicable. There shall be an ethics committee, in charge of evaluating potential conflicts of interests. Additional mechanisms are needed, e.g. for nominations, votes, events, etc. They will be defined by the group. Participation is open to everyone abiding by the group rules, and not involved with the Internet community.
A discussion list is open. Anyone maysubscribe.
People interested may join in now. Thank you.