Global stakeholders advance joint vision for the evolution of the Internet governance system at Istanbul conference

September 12, 2014

A record number of representatives from civil society, academia, business, technical community, and governments gathered in Istanbul on September 2-5 for the annual Internet Governance Forum (IGF).  Unlike many other UN conferences, the IGF intentionally convenes all stakeholders involved in the Internet ecosystem rather than just governments.  While the IGF does not produce binding outcomes, its multi-stakeholder discussions set the tone and direction on the future governance of the domain name system and related policy issues.


This IGF comes at an interesting time following the U.S. Government’s announcement to transfer oversight over key domain name functions to the multi-stakeholder community in March.  The NETmundial conference a month later advanced this idea further.   Some fear that next month’s ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in South Korea could see some authoritarian governments (read: Russia) push for a fundamentally different top-down  approach driven by governments and giving the UN a mandate over Internet governance.


IGF participants almost unanimously agreed on the merits of today’s multi-stakeholder model and advanced efforts to further improve it.  The ICANN globalization process and the stewardship transition of the IANA functions to the global multi-stakeholder community were widely supported.  The IGF itself was applauded and its mandate should be extended.  Future IGFs could produce recommendations and improve its inclusiveness, for instance by ensuring better participation from developing countries.


Above all, the IGF demonstrated that a majority of dedicated techies, civil society activists, academics, business experts, and government representatives are capable of advancing a joint vision for the further evolution of today’s successful Internet governance system.

Related Articles

CCIA Statement on Declaration on the Future of the Internet

Washington — The United States joined partners including the European Commission, Japan, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom today in the release of a “Declaration on the Future of the Internet”. The Declaration outlines aspirational standards for governments regarding digital governance and promotion of human rights online, and reinforces the importance of a multistakeholder approach…

CCIA Supports Efforts to Uphold Multistakeholder Approach to Internet Governance

Washington — CCIA President Matt Schruers sent a letter to the National Telecommunications & Information Administration (NTIA) in response to an open consultation regarding the International Telecommunication Union’s upcoming 2020 World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly taking place in November.  The letter supports proposed U.S. positions at the upcoming meeting to ensure that the ITU pursues standards…

France’s new hate speech law risks excessive takedowns, harms freedom of expression

Brussels, BELGIUM — The French National Assembly today adopted its “Avia Law” aimed at combating hate speech online. The Computer & Communications Industry Association is concerned that it could lead to excessive takedowns of content as companies, especially startups, would err on the side of caution.  The new law requires platforms to takedown manifestly illegal…