Chappatte’s cartoons – as always – say a lot. The attack on Charlie Hebdo was more than ‘just’ another terrorist attack; it was an attack on humour, one of the most sophisticated ways we have of communicating as humans. Humour is not appreciated by dogmatic thinking, be it ideological or radically religious. Humor questions dogma. It exposes paradoxes. Like a scanner, it removes the ideological trappings and goes to the core of the issue.
‘It is about digital, stupid’ is the main message from Jean-Claude Junker, the new president of the European Commission. In the Policy Guidelines for the EC delivered at the European Parliament (15 July 2014), Junker outlined the EU’s digital policy focusing mainly on digital data, the oil of the modern economy.
Could the Great War have been avoided if leaders had gotten together and negotiated in person instead of exchanging telegrams? In the voluminous historiography of the origins of WWI, there is a very little on the role of the telegraph. Today, as Twitter takes its place conference rooms, we can learn a lot from the failure of telegraph diplomacy one century ago.
Trust (or the lack thereof) is a frequent theme in public debates. It is often seen as a monolithic concept. However, we trust different people for different reasons, and in different ways. Sometimes we trust that people can do something (competences). In other situations our trust focuses on their intentions. This text is about trust in online space. It is inspired by discussions at the WSIS+10 high level dialogue on cybersecurity and trust.
Two Swedish diplomats, two Raouls (Nordling and Wallenberg) are great examples in the history of diplomacy during WWII. By using only the tools of diplomacy: persuasion, empathy, discretion, and patience, they saved thousands of lives and two great cities – Paris and Budapest. They remain a great inspiration for all of those who see diplomacy as the main way of solving problems in our highly interdependent world.
Diplo has a tradition of making a link between major Internet governance (IG) meetings and their venues. For example, when the IGF was in Athens, Greece, we noted the relevance of Plato’s writings for modern digital politics. Before the IGF went to Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt, we discussed the relevance of the ancient Tal-Amarna diplomacy to our time.
The Internet Governance Restaurant is a metaphoric answer to two key questions in the current debate echoing also in many of the 182 submissions for the forthcoming NETmundial: How to make Internet governance (IG) legitimate? How to grasp the complexity of IG without reducing its healthy diversity? In official lingo, the IG Restaurant could be called a global IG clearing house, or a global IG coordination committee, or in techno-lingo, perhaps an ‘IG router’.
Links between Switzerland and the Balkans are numerous, starting with those that are easily visible. Every Christmas and Easter, thousands of cars with Swiss plates carry families to their home countries for the holidays. Swiss cuckoo clocks hang on the walls of many houses in the Balkans.