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Mary Murphy (not verified) December 15, 2011

For me, the key issue here is No. 2 - that IG is finally moving into the premier league and becoming a global fixture in its own right. It is interesting to see this mirrored in mainstream media channels. Couple that with your No. 4 (the reconfiguration of the national handling of IG), and I envision a change in public perception of IG-related issues as having a broader reach and wider influence than previously anticipated.
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Ginger Paque December 15, 2011

No. 1--the Internet gets highly political--I wonder about that. I do know what you mean, but is it the Internet that got highly political? Or did politics start using the Internet to raise issue profiles? Yes, the Internet is on political radars... but for the Internet to be political, we would have to be discussing IG policies of real importance. Although No. 6 implies that human rights issues are coming into focus, I do not think that we are really tackling them yet. Some of the major players are still blocking HR from the agenda. This contention supports my point about No. 1. I think maybe we are still looking for the focusing device--but we have not yet started to focus. We might actually still have to invent the focusing device.
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Jovan Kurbalija December 16, 2011

the Internet is getting political in many ways. Politicians perceive that the Internet can make them loose power or/and elections. Is it reality? Probably not. The Internet is not - yet - decisive factor. But the perception of the importance of the Internet matters. Since the Internet is perceived as important for politics, it has to be either controlled or influenced (depending on the political approach). Discussion on online human rights reflects discussion on "normal" human rights. I expect the similar dynamics (e.g. positions, divisions, blockages). 2012 will be the year of "focusing". IG-cameras will start zooming in on specific issues.
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Karim ATTOUMANI... (not verified) December 17, 2011

I think that the politization of IG can be surrounded in two categories: from outside acts and by internal. I don't have much comments for the outside acts from various countries through UN GA but for me the most important that need pay attention is coming by internal. Countries affirmed theirs position through the GAC and we can identify some recurrent invocations of UN concepts (UN consensus in the GAC, ...) that introduce another dimension in the debates. It's quiet interesting to see the multi-stakeholderism movement borned from WSIS (an UN initiative), that become or affirmed itself independent and in some time in opposition by work and policy development process with the UN model. Today we see a sort of coming back to a mixture of govs, IGOs, NGOs, Civil Society, industries, universities, ect as all parties realized what is Internet and who are concerned by what can be channeled by (wikileak, industrial spy, public censoring, ect). I think that we should applaud for the wakeup of all actors as I think this is the right balance for a multistakeholder model that each actor affirms and play his role! Now the evidence is that how each stakeholder will understand others and continue to sustain the IG movement. (Sorry for my english!)
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De (not verified) December 18, 2011

Perhaps I'm being too specific?? but - the whole Wikileaks 'thing' continuing this year, including the attempts by Julian Assange to avoid extradition from the UK and the beginning of the hearings about Bradley Manning is something that should surely be remembered, also the apparent 'redefinition' of issues like privacy and plagiarism, also the reported successes in tackling child pornography online seem to me to be 'of importance'. And a question, from #2, 'The main global media (The Economist, IHT, Al Jazeera, BBC) are now following Internet governance developments more closely than ever before.' - I know that list is intended as a sample of prominent titles, but it leans rather heavily towards an English speaking, western, world. What are they reading (and reading about) in India and China? Perhaps there's another 'digital divide' in the works - East West this time instead of North South. I'm very much looking forward to Tuesday :-)
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Fahd A. Batayneh (not verified) December 19, 2011

Thank you Jovan, quite a comprehensive list. I would like to add to point 7 entitled "ICANN’s soul-searching" two extra points: 4. The introduction of the .xxx gTLD after years of controversy and court cases. The application was finally approved with many - mainly the GAC - opposing it" 5. The IANA contract negotiations and the transparency within the process. The question is "Will the NTIA be transparent once the bidding process results are out?"
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Nnenna (not verified) December 19, 2011

I think that the arrival of Google Plus in the Social Media arena should be somewhere there.. and the departure of Steve Jobs. Maybe add "shifts in social media landscape". In point 4, the launch of the Africa Internet Governance Forun (AfIGF) should be in, seeing that a ministerial vote of African ICT ministers has voted for and the initiative is now being tabled for the next Summit of heads of states! Where is Open Data? It appears to me to be one of the the big things. Then dotXXX too. And the integration of Lol and OMG into the English language dictionary..
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Jovan Kurbalija December 19, 2011

Karim, it is a very interesting division on "internal" and "external" politization of Internet governance. As you indicated, they have different dynamics. Let us observe them. De, I realised I missed WikiLeaks. Wikileaks supports the first point (IG getting highly political). On the media, yes I mentioned media and newspapers I follow. We should see with our community about media in other countries. What about media in the Caribbean region? Thank you Fahd for adding these important points to ICANN "soul-searching". Nnenna, Is there any specific IG-aspect of Google Plus. Steve Jobs was so great for any Internet/computer development, but I tried to stay more within IG-framework. AfIGF, Open Data, .xxx and Lol/OMG are missing. Many thanks!
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Arlene (not verified) December 20, 2011

From a Caribbean perspective, I think number one is most important. Caribbean politicians have begun to recognise the power of the internet for shaping opinions and reaching people; first born out of the Obama campaign and blossoming with the Arab spring. Hopefully this realisation will lead to number two and we would fully wake up to the issues of IG and take our place in shaping the future.
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Jovan Kurbalija December 20, 2011

Ariene, the Caribbean perspective is highly relevant. Caribbean is close enough to the hub of digital world (USA), but far enough to have problems of developing countries. Caribbean has advantages and problems of the both worlds. Moreover, For Caribbean small island states, the Internet has additional relevance as a tool for overcoming geographical remotness. It will be interesting to follow the IG developments in small island states in both Caribbean and Pacific regions.
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Carlton Samuels (not verified) January 02, 2012

Your #2 issue resonates because every other development is going to be impacted by this one. Some more pertinent details: 1) The Internet is now acknowledged as an enabler of economic and social development by every major trading bloc. 2) The Internet is declared a national security interest of the United States. Herein lies my anxieties. For unless we keep on top of the issues, somewhere along the line our collective interests will be compromised. For the most part, Caribbean civil society groups and governments are hardly attentive. And when we are not in the room or part of the discussion others will further marginalize us...or forget us altogether.
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Jovan Kurbalija January 05, 2012

Carlton, I can re-inforce your point on an importance to be "in the room" for many reasons. One is psychological, it is easier to challenge somebody is not in the room. Inclusion is not just ethical or democratic preference. It is a very practical aspect of global governance. It is in the interest of all negotiating parties (not realised very often). If we can para-phrase a famous saying: "There is no implementation (of global deals) without participation". It makes particularly important to have small states and civil society "in the room". Both Caribbean and Pacific can play highly important role in the IG-process. They can provide ethical and practical "glue" for the emerging IG policy architecture.

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