Internet Governance Symposium

We’re into the afternoon sessions of the International Symposium
on Public Participation in Internet Governance.  I was surprised
(pleasantly, of course) to see a full room, overflowing such that
another row of chairs had to be brought in.  Our hosts at NIDA
turned out a crowd including a large number of students, which was
particularly promising.

Right now, Izumi Aizu, principal of Asia Network Research, is filling us
in on the Working Group on Internet Governance and World Summit on
Information Society situation.  He resolves that we ought to
emphasize the role of netizens in making self-governance possible.

Prof. Xue Hong of the University of Hong Kong, in a particularly
heartfelt and occasionally poetic presentation, emphasized the need to
consider the main purpose of the WSIS process to be to bridge the
digital divide.

Prof. Myung Koo Kang, of the Department of Communication at the Seoul
National University,  drew connections among the previous
speakers.  He notes that there is no one proposal on the
table.  We ought to
try to put our efforts into specifics of how we might move ahead. 
How does internet governance link the global and local
perspectives?  Through which structure can global and local issues
best be resolved?  In Prof. Kang’s view, we have no choice to but
to confront the internet governance issue over the next 10 to
20 years.  It is impossible, he says, to manage expanded internet
governance
issues with a single authority.  He proposes a model that he calls
“decentralized
governance in unity”.  Most specifically, Prof. Kang suggests a 1
– 2 % fee from ICANN’s revenues to fund a global outreach fund.

Tommy Matsumoto, the chair of Asia Pacific Networking Group
(APNG), is reporting about the extensive activities of the APNG. 
Most impressive: they have a self-funded fellowship program to bring in
people from developing countries into their at-large program, thanks to
voluntary sponsors.

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