Internet Governance 15 May 2013

Many voices makes strong policy

By Sally WentworthManaging Director, Incoming CEO

By Joyce Dogniez and Sally Shipman Wentworth

As more of the world’s seven billion people move online, it is critical that the policies that govern the Internet in different countries encourage openness. One of the best ways forward is to listen to many different voices when it comes to forming policy.

Internet Society Chapters are some of these voices in their home countries.

The Philippines Chapter “already had existing multistakeholder approaches in public hearings as conducted by our regulator, the National Telecommunications Commission,” explains Winthrop Yu, Internet Society Philippines Chapter member. “Nevertheless, it was after the Internet Society-Infocoms Technology Associaton of the Philippines Symposium in Manila that a Philippine Consultative Working Group on WCIT was convened.

“This served as an example of how cooperative consultation with various stakeholders can enhance the efficiency and efficacy of government agencies.” Different stakeholder groups can bring forward resources and experienced opinions that government agencies may not have access to otherwise.

This specialist knowledge is particularly important when working with some of the more technical aspects of Internet governance.

“We’re trying to show our national regulators that regulating the Internet is a bit different than regulating the water supply, say, or coal mining,” explains Hans Peter Dittler, member of the German Chapter. “We are holding a half-day conference ahead of the Internet Engineering Task Force meeting in Berlin and inviting government officials to talk about how we can work together in the future.

“We work with the government, at the same level as industry groups like telecommunications companies and lobby groups,” said Dittler. “We want to keep the Internet free and open, not only today but in five and ten years time.”

Disclaimer: Viewpoints expressed in this post are those of the author and may or may not reflect official Internet Society positions.

Related articles

Strengthening the Internet 18 March 2024

What Governments Can Learn from Canada when Regulating Online Harms

Canada's Online Harms Act should be an example of how to protect the fundamentals of the Internet while improving...

Shaping Future of the Internet 1 February 2023

Your Chance to Be the Changemaker

It's not every day a fellowship program changes lives. But that's exactly what we see when our alumni set...

Internet Governance 6 December 2021

Uniting the Internet at IGF 2021

Numerous Internet Society experts will be taking part in the Internet Governence Forum 2021.