Opening session – What is the public and economic value of the Internet for Europe? – 2010
29 April 2010 | 9:45-11:30
Programme overview 2010
Round-table discussion between high-level representatives of governments, parliaments, institutions and organisations regarding European priorities and perspectives for the Internet as a space for democracy, economic growth and public value. Open dialogue between round-table participants and the audience on how European citizens/users see their role in using and shaping the Internet.
- Prof. José Mariano Gago, Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education of Portugal
- Elfa Ýr Gylfadottir, Ministry of Education, Science and Culture in Iceland
- Visho Ajazi Lika, Deputy Minister for Innovation and the Technology of Information and Communication of Albania
- Sebastian Muriel, General Director of Red.es (Chairman)
- Michael Niebel, European Commission
- Frédéric Riehl, Vice-Director, OFCOM Switzerland
- Jeroen Schokkenbroek, Head of Department on Human Rights Development, Council of Europe
- Lieven Vermaele, Technical director of EBU
- Susana Roza, RTVE, Spain
- Vladimir Radunovic, DiploFoundation Coordinator, Internet Governance Programme
Remote participants moderator
- David Varona, RTVE Spain
The Internet is a public value space bringing more than just economic wealth to users. Digital education is a precondition for employment and for generally empowering citizens. Avoiding over-regulation of the Internet is important.
The two leading lines of the session concerned the Internet as a market place which is driving development and the Internet as a public value space bringing more than just economic wealth to users. There were no doubts that the Internet is a platform for human development and that investments in it are adding significant financial value. Finding the right balance between the public interest and paying producers to produce even more (i.e. finding the balance between the social and economic value of the Internet) was highlighted.
Digital education was considered to be a precondition for employment and for generally empowering citizens.
The attractiveness of the Internet as a market place was considered to be subject to several conditions:
- unlimited user access to content and services, including access to infrastructure and broadband. From the perspective of broadcasters, it was stated that wireless and optics-based broadband cannot be measured equally, and that the idea of giving out spectrum for broadband was considered to be not be a good option;
- uninterrupted access to the network by content and service providers with reference made to principles of ‘network neutrality’;
- open standards allowing competition on an equal footing;
- protection and respect for privacy and freedom of expression.
Balanced copyright protection was underlined with reference to the rights of authors while, at the same time, promoting the sharing of knowledge. Measures or sanctions in this respect should be proportionate and should not violate other rights and principles.
The Internet was clearly identified as a space of high public value with examples given of the power of the Internet to improve crisis management and to promote democratic processes. Protection of and respect for human rights on the Internet was also emphasised as a key factor.
Avoiding over-regulation of the Internet was emphasised, in particular with reference to the proportionality of (national) legal responses. Listening to the concerns and positions of stakeholders by way of an open dialogue was considered a better way forward to help build mutual trust. In this connection, policies and/or legislation should be technology neutral so that they can remain relevant as the Internet evolves.
Examples were provided of how states deal with key Internet governance issues. The Icelandic Modern Media Initiative was presented as an example to create a legal environment for new media that protects their freedom of expression and information (i.e. protection of whistle-blowers and sources of information). Albanian experiences were shared, in particular in linking schools and creating public access points, as well as enabling e-commerce and e-government services.
It was argued that there is not enough being done to digitally preserve, disseminate and promote pan-European values on the Internet, in particular with regard to cultural and language diversity.
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This text is being provided in a rough draft format. Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) is provided in order to facilitate communication accessibility and may not be a totally verbatim record of the proceedings.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Good morning everybody. We will start now the round table discussion about what is the public and economic value of the Internet in Europe?
My name is Susana Roza. I’m here on behalf of RTVE, public Spanish television, where I work as a news anchor for the morning show. And I’d just like for you to consider the following. We’re going to listen to ten experts today here. Eight of them are going to be seated here. They are taking their places right now. And the other two, one of them is you as public, as the audience. I encourage you, please, to participate. Any doubt or any idea, any thought you want to share with us, please feel free to do so. All of your questions are going to be more than welcome. You just have to raise your hand. We will be waiting for your questions or thoughts.
That’s the ninth participant. The tenth is going to be the remote participation. That is why I want to thank David Varona, who is going to be responsible for the remote participation. Thank you, David. I know Vladimir Radunovic, he will take care of wrapping up all of these discussions around 11:25. Because at 11:30, we will start to have our coffee.
So, just let me tell you that among so many experts I’m the only one who is not an expert at all. I’m just a regular Internet user. But, I am a mother of two wonderful girls, they are 8 and 5. And as Matthias said, they were born in this big Metropolis. So I may have some questions and some worries. If it’s really necessary to control privacy, danger, like pornography for, in my case for my girls, what about this these new generations that are dependent on new technologies?
I am also worried about who is responsible for making the new policies, about how education is going to change in the future through the Internet, and about this big generational gap.
So there are thousands of ideas and thoughts. So please I encourage you again to start thinking about what you want to share with us.
So let’s start with the real experts. I’m going to give each of them one minute to introduce themselves. And I’m going to be walking around to get close to you. If you want to ask anything, just raise your hand and we will give you a microphone.
So let’s start with Sebastian Muriel, please, you have one minute to tell us about yourself.
>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: As Director of Red.Es, within the Ministry of Industry and the Spanish government, we have the duty and the aim of driving forward the information society in Spain. Lucent Technologies, Price Waterhouse Coopers have been interested partners, and we have continuously looked at moving towards efficiency and improving productivity in companies. And the aim has been to ensure that the Internet reaches everyone, without any type of problem, regardless of where they are living.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Lieven Vermaele.
>> LIEVEN VERMAELE: Thank you. I’m working for EBU. EBU is known for the broadcasts. And that’s what we do. We work together as broadcasters in Europe, in rights, content, policy, and technical services. And I think media organizations, because broadcasting is – broadcasting organizations or media organizations are undergoing interesting times.
And we are traditionally active in radio and TV. But media, especially public service broadcasters, have a very important role in defining and making the new technologies happen. We play an important role in the Internet domain with the media services and also in the mobile domain.
So I’m here for the EBU. We believe we have a key role in services and we can be a huge contributor in this Internet discussion.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you.
Jeroen, you have your minute to introduce yourself to the audience.
>> JEROEN SCHOKKENBROEK: I work at the Council of Europe as head of the human rights development department.
As was said this morning earlier, the Council of Europe is an organization that promotes European cooperation between the Member States for democracy, human rights and the rule of law. Human rights is therefore an important part of our work and that includes human rights and Democratic principles regarding the Internet. So, the media and information society division of the Council of Europe, where my colleagues work, are important actors in the Council of Europe to shape European policy of these principles regarding the Internet.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Let’s welcome the only woman in the panel, Elfa, please, just your turn.
>> ELFA YR GYLFADOTTIR: Thank you very much. I’m working for the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture in Iceland. I’m head of the media department there. I’m stepping in here on behalf of Birgitta Jonsdottir, who is a member of parliament. She unfortunately is stuck in Iceland. As you may know, we have quite a few volcanoes in Iceland. Now, this weapon of ash destruction is turning on our own, so she is unable and all flights have been cancelled. But I will try to discuss and tell you a little bit about the initiative that she was going to discuss here, because if this is going to be passed in the parliament, it will be my ministry that will be responsible for the coordination of the legislative changes that are needed.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Michael Niebel. It’s your turn.
>> MICHAEL NIEBEL: Thank you. I’m with the European Commission on dealing with Internet, the information security, dot eu, the electronic signature and I’ve been basically involved with the information society since the word was coined in Europe. So the mid ’90s. And also with Internet Governance since the end of the last century and also I’ve been working in copyrights and telecommunications privacy and other issues. So the whole package.
And I’m looking forward to the discussion. Thank you.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you, Michael.
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: Thank you. I’m currently the Minister for Science, Technology and Higher Education in Portugal. I’ve been in government for many years; almost too many.
And I have the privilege to have followed the European policy in this area for many, many years. When it evolved from infrastructure, that was called highways of information, to the information society policies, and that was a big change in the ’90s. And I’ve been following the development of the debate, the political debate in this area, either at the national level, local level, but also at the global level. I’m also a physicist. I come from Cern. I worked with them for many years. So the Internet were part of my professional training before they came part of our daily life.
And I hope I will contribute to your debate. Thank you.
>> SUSANA ROZA: You will. Thank you very much. Let’s welcome also Mr. Visho Lika, Deputy Minister for Innovation and the Technology of Information and Communication of Albania.
>> VISHO LIKA: I’m from Albania. I want to emphasize that we created a ministry dedicated to ICT, just to take care of all of the developments that are coming at me as a newcomer. But to be prepared to join the European community. Thank you.
>> SUSANA ROZA: And Frederic Riehl, please, your community.
>> FREDERIC RIEHL: I’m the Vice-Director of the Swiss Federal Office of Communication, responsible for telecommunications and audio visual, infrastructure, as well as content. I represent Switzerland in different international organizations, such as ITU, the Council of Europe, the steering committee on MS media, IGF of course, and now the commission for the technical and scientific development of the UN, which will be meeting soon.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you very much. So we will start with the debate. I would like for you to take three minutes, because we are running out of time, so Mr. Gaga, is it possible?
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: We can announce that the minute has come.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Don’t worry, I’ll be here just to let you know. So almost, you get four minutes, okay. Three, just let’s start.
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: Thank you very much. I think that if we enter into a debate on the importance of technologies, Internet is on the rise. Our sector, as I was saying, is more and more important in the economy. The weight of the – on the GDP is increasing in importance. But what I think is more important, the effect it has on the rest of the sector, it has a direct trickle down effect, which I don’t think any economic sector in the world is not experiencing a situation where technologies are not transforming reality.
Here in Spain, and there are similar data for other countries, every Euro that is invested in broadband has a multiplying factor by three in its effects on the GDP. 10 percent of the telephone operations can represent up to 1.2 percent increase in GDP growth also. I’m talking about direct economic impact.
ICTs provide also an enormous result in European activities. What we have to consider is that this becomes a more and more important technology and we have to make this be known and realize it.
In our case, in space, technologies are going to become the sector which takes on the economic weight of other sectors. Some of the things that we are dealing with say that in 2025, Internet will be the second – ICT on Internet will be the second sector behind tourism and its contribution to gross economics will be 12 percent more. The change in productive model, for example, having the construction industry disappear, considering the important – their importance in our economy today, and having them substituted by the Internet, are based also on the realities that we have seen in the crisis.
Over the course of the past few years, we have had a very deep effect on the part of the economic crisis, and the technology and the ICT sector is the sector that has reacted in the most robust manner and has had the least losses of all of the economic sectors. But also the same can be said as far as qualified employment is concerned. All countries are interested in heading towards a type of employment that is based on technology and information and knowledge.
I think Spain is carrying out a very intense effort as far as a way of working is concerned. As far as trying to generate projects which will transform our administration, sometimes they will have a dual effect, on one hand more modern administration, which relate electronically with citizens. And in this regard in Spain, we do have a very strong legislative effort.
Any citizen is entitled to have electronic relations with its administrations.
And the second aspect would be to improve industry’s competitivity. In this way, the Spanish and European industry, and being able to export these technologies to other countries, which little by little will have to increase and improve their electronic relationships between each citizen and social networks, via Internet.
So, as I said, there is a dual effect. On the one hand, a growing economic effect if in all aspects of our life, the professional aspect, the leisure and personal aspect, and also in the aspect of relations with public administrations. And in that regard, I think that Europe has to lead many of these efforts, leveraging on the critical masses of individuals who are already connected to the Internet, and for this purpose what we have to do is we have to increase the use in public services and in private companies, which will lead to a greater use of Internet.
Yes, of course, I think that we should all become that critical mass that you have referred to, so that we can all start participating as soon as possible. We should also look for the different sectors. We should also be able to fan out the perspectives, so we can see the government, the community perspectives.
Please, anyone who wants to make a comment or ask a question, just raise your hand, and we will approach you so that you can have a microphone and we can listen to your opinion.
>> LIEVEN VERMAELE: Thank you. I’m now aware that the minute is not 60 seconds. Let me come back.
European Broadcasting Union, media organizations, I come directly to the Internet. But I think we play a key role there. On one hand, there is a lot of information on the Internet and that connects with the role that public service broadcasters have. We can play a key role on this. We can be a reference point for the users and also for the framework of the Internet in serving certain quality, and serving accessibility, and really be a reference point in let’s say a very growing Internet of information and services.
On the other hand, we can be a real catalyst in employing new services. And we are a public service broadcaster, and we develop new media applications for free and then it continues in a very growing commercial market.
A lot of innovation in Europe is driven via public service broadcasting organizations and services. And that’s important. We indirectly are from the government and nations. But we have to use a metaphor and I don’t want to use a metaphor from the industrial revolution. We have to go back to the middle ages. It was big revolutions when they created the marketplaces. And the Internet is something like a virtual marketplace. But it’s not there only to trade. It has an information value. People came to listen and learn. And this Internet has to be the future marketplace, a good marketplace for all of these elements. It has to be attractive. It has to work. And to be attractive, we need elements for that.
First of all, a marketplace that is efffective when users access it. Access, universal access is crucial. I have to correct on one thing here, I know that there is a lot of discussion about spectral and digital dividend. I think we will never be able to deliver the same expected services via fixed or wireless Broadband. And the discussion will need to be a discussion.
Secondly, the marketplace has to be accessible for everybody who wants to deploy his services there. So elements like net neutrality, of course taking into account the different technical elements of the marketplace are very important.
Thirdly, if you want to have competition on this marketplace, you need open standards. They are crucial that everybody competes on the same level and can compete and create products and also can develop products on the basis of the same standards. And from a media point perspective, I think two elements are needed. It’s an actualized or modernized copyright and therefore I would like to refer to an EBU document, which is recently being prepared and delivered, about a better optimized copyright routine. It talks about strong rights but easy access and reusability of these rights on different platforms and different environments, also taking into account the right legal policy to do things around privacy.
And the last element is for media organizations freedom of expressions and the right way to control the reliability of information. If you take into account these five elements, we can create an attractive marketplace and this will create a very good economic and public value for all of the stakeholders on the Internet domain.
Thank you very much.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you. Jeroen Schokkenbroek, please.
>> JEROEN SCHOKKENBROEK: Thank you. Well, at the risk of bombarding you with metaphors, we heard a village, a Metropolis, we heard about a medieval marketplace. I’d like to go a bit further back even in history to ancient Greece, where there were places called agora. This is the name of the building of the Council of Europe, where we develop our Internet and media policies in Strasbourg. The marketplace is a place for Democratic participation, for Democratic expression, sharing of information and ideas. It’s clear that the Internet has enormous economic potential.
Speaking about the economic value, World Bank statistics show that for every 10 percent increase in broadband in low to middle income countries, there is a corresponding 1.38 percent acceleration in economic growth. And for higher income counts, of course Internet development is offering hope, in the face of the recent global economic crisis, by allowing people to start up microbusinesses online.
But as I said, Internet is more than that. There is a whole public value dimension, which is vast. We have seen specific examples of that. Some of them were referred to earlier this morning, responding to crisis.
It has been mentioned by Hilary Clinton. The way of financial aid, the effectiveness of local actions on the ground, it’s facilitated by ICT. And we have seen very concrete examples of the Democratic functions that, for example, Twitter plays in Iran. We have – today, we’re witnesses in the run-up to the UK general election. Very interesting development of the use of Facebook.
So, Internet is an inevitable fact of life. There is a significant reliance on it, according to already in 2007 the Council of Europe recommendation.
The Internet has become for many people also a necessity. It would be very difficult to live without it. Now, if we think about that, there are many policy implications. Is it still possible for someone in today’s society to live, to function normally, to do normal things without Internet?
I’m thinking in particular about the old debate about the digital haves and have-nots. But there are still sizable parts of our populations also in Europe that are not computer literate let alone Internet literate. And are we not making life difficult for them with all of the development, welcomed development of technology that we see, of new tools, and ways of communicating with the administration, which was mentioned? Is it still possible for people to communicate in an analog manner and to get the services from their society that they expect? It is a question for discussion.
And another point, it’s a Council of Europe message, human rights do not stop when you enter the online world. Countries, and that is nothing new, are bound by Council of Europe standards to protect the European Convention on human rights. The case law of the Strausbourg law is a compass for countries to follow whenever they develop public policy, and that applies on the Internet. But perhaps for the younger generation, the digital nation, it’s better to think of a GPS function of the Strasbourg court. It means that we have to protect human rights principles on the Internet, to protect the dignity of the vulnerable people. But at the same time, we have to avoid over regulating the Internet. we have to avoid going too far with national legislation which could be abusive and in particular disproportionate.
It’s legitimate to take some measures, but the principle of proportionality means that you don’t go further than what is necessary to protect a legitimate interest or legitimate rights of others. That is true for protecting minors, for copyright and so on.
Are we learning sufficiently the lessons from the recent debates we have seen in Germany and France about access restrictions to the Internet? Are we sufficiently aware of the impact that sanctions may have, that can be imposed under such measure, that sanctions may have on everyone’s daily lives if you are confronted with access limitations? So governments, but also the business communities have responsibilities. There are different approaches possible and I’m sure we will discuss those later in this EuroDIG.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Any questions? Elfa, please.
>> ELFA GYLFADOTTIR: Thank you very much. It will be a challenge for me to tell you about the Icelandic model initiative in just a few minutes. But, this is a proposal for the parliament and it’s called the Icelandic modern media initiative. And the goal of this initiative, this is a proposal. It is finding ways to strengthen freedom of expression around the world and in Iceland, as well as providing strong protections for sources and whistleblowers.
And the legal environment of all the countries will be considered with the purpose of assembling the best laws to make Iceland as a leader of the freedom of expression and information. And this is a parliamentary Resolution, which is proposed by almost one-third of all of the parliamentarians in the Icelandic parliaments and from all parties. And this legislative initiative is intended to make Iceland an attractive environment for the registration and operation of Internet press organizations, new media start ups, human rights groups, and Internet data centers.
And the aim is to create comprehensive policy and legal frameworks to protect these freedoms, which is needed for investigative journalism and other politically important publishing.
And the Question that arises, because this is quite provocative as you can hear, is why is this needed? Why is this happening in Iceland? And I want to tell you, because something like this does not happen in a vacuum. This is something that I would say that comes out of this financial crisis that blew my country completely away like I say one and a half years ago. And it was quite apparent that the media did not do its work as being the watch dog. And information was needed. There was a lot of secrecy and so the key concept of being transparent and open is something that is taking us forward and building up a new society.
So the parliamentarians feel that the nation is at a crossroads, and there is a need for legislative change. And these changes, in order for this not to happen again, needs to be based on human rights principles.
There is also another factor in this, and that is that last year the first Council of Europe conference of ministers responsible for media and new media communication services was held in Iceland. And a lot of attention was on how terrorist legislation, how that is being used or misused in Europe, and how this is limiting the freedom of expression protection of journalists sources and materials, wire tap, and surveillance of journalists and so forth. So this is the kind of environment where this initiative is being put forward.
There are some issues and changes that need to be made. Source protection, whistleblower protection as well as changes of the Freedom of Information Act, which is more for domestic purposes in Iceland. But in making Iceland attractive for other media companies, there are some fundamental challenges. And I’m just going to mention a few.
One is the data retention act of the European Union. There are some countries, like Belgium, who have designed legislation to protect all communication between sources and journalists, and then these groups are defined broadly. But such protections may have limited effect if it is – if it’s – if the records of this communication is held elsewhere. And in the case of Iceland, that is of course, we had to implement this as well. So this is one of of the legislations. This is a challenge, since it’s coming from the EU.
And then I would like to mention the second part, and that is the history of protection. And the European Court of Human Rights issued a ruling last year, and the court confirms that for the purposes of law of libel and Internet publication, it should be considered to be published afresh every time a reader accesses this information online. And the ruling also finds that libel proceedings brought against the publisher after a lapse of time as well, in the absence of exceptional circumstances gave rise to this appropriate interference with press freedom. So this leaves it open for Member States to limit periods of time to be applied to these archives.
And then the last issue that I would like to mention here is the libel tourism and the abuse of the British libel law that has been discussed in recent years. And of course in the United States this has been considered, and New York has actually passed a law to protect themselves against this. So there are a number of international laws that will be considered, and it is the responsibility of the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture, where I work, to be the organizer between the ministries if this media initiative will be passed in the parliament this spring.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Let me stop here for a minute. I’d like to check if anybody has any questions. I will appreciate especially any female opinion. Because we are a minority, as you may see. I mean, we’re – there are males around, but just Elfa and myself here. But I would really appreciate it if anybody has anything to say.
Okay. I’ll give you time, some time. And let’s go to the remote participation just to check if it’s an animated conversation in here. So David is going to help me out to hear what our colleagues are thinking about, and how many questions do they have?
>> DAVID VARONA: Thank you. Hello. We have a lot of questions from the different hubs.
Can you hear me?
>> SUSANA ROZA: Now. Okay.
>> DAVID VARONA: I have some questions from here and from Europe. They are asking about...
>> REMOTE PARTICIPANT: How do you see the development of Internet Governance in east and west Europe attending to the technical differences between east and west Europe. So –
>> SUSANA ROZA: Mr. Lika, do you feel ready to answer? If you think about eastern or western Europe, and your government has made so many things.
>> VISHO LIKA: Thank you. First of all, I didn’t really understand exactly the Question. But assuming that you were talking about the Internet penetration in eastern Europe, well, I would refer to my country better since I’m prepared for that.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Okay. It’s up to you. If you feel comfortable.
>> VISHO LIKA: I would say that –
>> SUSANA ROZA: Okay. But you have three minutes.
>> VISHO: Okay. So I have that one, too.
So in the last few years, last three years or so, we have been preparing all the legislation and let’s say the necessary legal framework to be, you know, to be covered, all of this huge activity, this Internet participation. And for that, we have all tried to be as much compatible with the European standards and directives for that. And in the meantime, we worked at creating some, you know, projects that generally speaking are related to government services, eServices, so generally speaking on the associated development direct, which I would like to mention that it was let’s say twofold direction.
First, creating an institution that are taking care of – not controlling, but how do you call it, so – supporting this development. And on the other side, a project that links the government services with the population.
And some of those projects that I would like to emphasize here is we already link to the Internet all of the schools off Albania, which was a great challenge. It’s a small country, but a very great country. And that was a great achievement.
On the other side, we have had some digitalizing competitors and electronic procurement and eCommerce and digitalized electronic taxes. And as I mentioned before, these laws, especially the law for electronic communication and signature, helped us to make it possible to reach people in remote places and not necessarily coming into the government offices. So reducing that face-to-face communication with the government offices as much as possible.
On the other side, keeping in mind that one part of the population probably is just not able to have such access, due to the – I mean, to the economic level. We have had – and there is a project on the way, called PAP, Public Access Point, to give free Internet access to large populations, and this covers most of Albania. Still, this project is underway.
It is interesting to see or interesting to emphasize that while mobile communication has been springing up all over Albania, countries like Albania, the Balkans, I would say that we are comparable on mobile penetration in Europe. 30 percent of the population has mobile access while the Internet access is not at that level, because those mobile communication companies don’t give really nice rates for that.
However, during the last four years it has been quite a change in Internet access and Internet penetration. So I would just give you some numbers. In 2005, it was only 5 percent, around 5 percent of the population had direct access, and today it’s over 30 percent.
And the biggest challenge is the creation of the backbone, broadband. And we’re working on that. And there is a project underway to, you know, to connect all of the main centers of Albania through fiber optics, in order to ensure the largest possible broadband communication.
And so Albanian or Albanian government point of view, which I represent right now, and I’d like to say that recently it was created a ministry for that. And we have a national agency for – a national agency created two years ago which takes care of all of the development in my country. The most important thing that that we, you know, that we or let’s say the main priorities that are in compliance with the European practices and related to the field are that all inclusive eGovernance. Real effectiveness, efficiency and effectiveness of the administration, implementational services of high impact, with a high impact and interoperability, and we are working on that government project. And strengthening of public participation in the decision-making process.
One last thing that I would like to, you know, to emphasize or to stress at this point is that what we think the impact of the Internet will be in countries like Albania or eastern European countries, the first and foremost is that that will have a direct impact on the level of democracy in countries like ours. Also, it’s a great way for education of people and to get access to information.
Also, it already has – I wouldn’t say big, but really quite an impact on the business and the communication among the main players of the business in my country.
As I mentioned in my first briefing, we are kind of newcomers in this field, but we are eager to get and pace as soon as we can. And we are planning, you know, to invest in this field more than in one way; we have the possibilities. And for that, really, we think it’s an investment for the future. Thank you.
And I’m not sure I was able to answer the Question, but, this was kind of –
>> SUSANA ROZA: You gave us the perspective from the eastern countries, which I think is very useful in this case.
I’d like to keep going with some questions from the hubs which are connected. David, any other Question that you think are interesting at this point?
>> DAVID VARONA: Yes. We have a question about online journalism.
>> REMOTE PARTICIPANT: The online journalism in Europe, what do you think about this development?
>> SUSANA ROZA: Lieven, maybe you are the closest to – anybody?
>> LIEVEN VERMAELE: I don’t know what the Question really is. Okay. Online journalism is taking place. I think what is just as important as this is that the freedom of expression must exist. Everybody must have the possibilities to deploy these things. I think it’s just as important that we have the right tools in place to make sure that the reliability of the information is guaranteed. And I also think we as public service broadcasting organizations we have to embrace the online journalism activities. So meaning that you have a public service broadcast, they can embrace the information and the users of their Web sites on the online operations.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you very much. Frederic, just explain your main messages in this discussion, please.
>> FREDERIC RIEHL: I’ll start by being rather provocative. Isn’t the Internet just another communication tool and nothing more? Does the Internet offer anything really new? Does it add value and for whom?
These are the questions we should answer. We all know about the new opportunities offered by the Internet access to knowledge information. E-commerce, eEducation, eAdministration, and we acknowledge that Internet is a wonderful tool with all of these advantages. But it also has drawbacks. So should we really take sides with the different Internet stakeholders, the consumers, citizens? Stakeholders with different needs and expectations, should we just allow the market to lead? Because after all, there are certain needs to be covered promoting access to Internet itself, to the network, and also promoting education through Internet access.
We’re thinking of the seniors and the disabled and diversity. What about thinking in terms of diversity? There is also the need to protect freedom of speech and guarantees on the Internet, guarantees for privacy, and counselor cybercrime, protecting copyrights.
In a nutshell, there are a host of issues to tackle. Internet, however, is not a no man’s land with no rights. There are rules that apply and so does common law. Before setting up specific rules and regulations, we should think whether instead we shouldn’t use existing legislation and really rely on case law.
I don’t think that we should go blindly into a deregulation. We have to really trust the stakeholders. We mustn’t be taken in by the principle of precaution, because we know where this can lead us if we go too far. We have to be listening to the stakeholders, private sector, civil society, citizens. That’s my main message.
And, in fact, that’s where EuroDIG is being held.
>> SUSANA ROZA: I was trying to ask you, and I want you to think about, let me be also a little bit provocative. Are they down-to-earth? Are they on the users’ level? Do you think they are following what you need? Think about it and let me go up there for someone who wants to make a question.
Could you please introduce yourself and your name?
>> AUDIENCE: I work for Juniper networks. It’s interesting to hear about the stakeholders, because as a vendor we talk a lot to service providers, right, and the message we’re getting all the time is that the people who are building the Internet, right, – the infrastructure, they are saying that they cannot sustain this model of just building this infrastructure and not getting paid for it. And you know the Telefonica was very collaborative just a month ago. So when you think about the public infrastructure lack, rail track, airports, highway, today all of those are paid by the public sector. And do you think having heard the European Commission and someone from OFCOM, I would be very interested to hear their views. And if they see a move in a regulation changing to go to public sector being more involved in building the access infrastructure.
For example, the European Commission has been very vocal against it and some regulators have been very vocal against it.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you. Michael, do you want to answer him?
>> MICHAEL NIEBEL: In my piece?
>> SUSANA ROZA: You answer first.
>> MICHAEL NIEBEL: First, I don’t have the answer. But it is quite clear that we’re – that – and there have been voices, that this is a different ball game. It’s a different structure. It has been developing in an evolutionary way. And many of the providers are rooted also in the telecom infrastructure and in the regulatory framework. And the minister knows much more about this than I. And there are no reflexes to take over by the public sector and that’s as clear as I can get on that.
>> SUSANA ROZA: That’s fine. So let’s – let’s hear what Mr. Gago has to say, please. Your time.
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: Well, thank you very much. What I have to say is really quite different from what has been said up to now. I’m trying to extract from this idea that you are trying to put or have a dialog what we need to dialog about. I mean, what is still needed to discuss about this?
First, I think there is a tremendous role that has to be – that the Council of Europe has tried to address, the Question of – all the questions, freedom, human rights, democracy, et cetera, how this connects to the digital agenda.
And my first point has to do with the digital agenda and Democratic societies and the role of Europe in helping activists, human right activists, in parts of the world that are not Democratic.
The digital agenda has proved to be extremely powerful for that. But to do so, have we done enough? I don’t think we have done enough. I think we have not yet provided encryption tools. We have not provided privacy tools at the general level to everyone in this society. That has been because we have been confused ourselves with the problem of privacy versus responsibility, and because of September 11. That is one problem we need to address.
My second point is content. We have been discussing about digital content for many years. And, in fact, Europe has as enormous variety of languages, of traditions, of untapped culture, in fact, of unaccessible culture, except for experts. But on the other hand, the population in Europe is increasingly educated and able to access and to understand most of those sources.
I don’t think it is possible to go with the present trends. If we will be able to make all this variety of content accessible, we need to solve at least two problems. One, the problem of democratizing tools for translation. And, second, to tap the generosity of millions of people to promote the digitalization of content, image, text, et cetera. If we tried to do it the old fashioned way, it will never be possible. And, in fact, I think the share of European content in the digital world is, in fact, decreasing, and that is most strange in view of what Europe has to give to the old world.
My third point is networking. We have been discussing this Question of social networks recently. But in fact we should ask ourselves if social networks can go further beyond this almost childish dorm type instantaneous type of innocence that in fact they are triggered by growth and publicity and value. And probably the Question is how can networks be the ground for emerging new institutions? Of course, the networks will always be there, they will be there, they will not disappear. People will go in and they will go out. They will hide and they will share. Good.
But how can this be a basis for global new institutions? I think we need to address this Question and in many countries that is still extremely difficult in legal terms.
My next point is political activism, this idea of the digital agenda has proved extremely powerful in blurring different years of political parties. The frontiers between the pragmatists on one hand, this type of view that has been pervasive in the Internet world from the very beginning, have the very beginning at the University level and it’s still there. And it has been a strong driving force for all of this. People come together in the digital agenda in any country in a global countenance, with this idea that they are sharing something, companies and individuals, nongovernmental organizations and journalists are sharing an idea, a vague idea of progress. And that has changed politics, in fact. In my view, the Internet has changed politics in the world during this last decade.
Now, have we thought enough about that? I think we need to ask our colleagues from the political science and sociology to study it deeper. Because in fact a new type of politics is – and participation. A few decades ago, the participation in politics was declared dead. Now we see that it is well alive.
I would say my last point, one of two last points, is this idea of a new Internet and new types of Internet. The first thing is the Internet versus globalization. It may seem paradoxical, but I don’t think the Internet is very global. It has become mobile and now it’s in mobile apparatus. However, the old notion of roaming, it’s something of a piece of – to go into a museum. It’s extraordinarily strange how in 2010 this very economic strange idea of roaming is still possible. And it is possible because, in fact, for instance, in Europe, the single market does not simply exist in this area. And this is an enormous drawback for the development of the success and the simplicity of the Internet. The company red tape in almost all European countries is dramatic and should be changed and addressed directly.
My last point is about this technically called future Internet, Internet of things, so the combination of Internet and at the end there are computers and then there are people. And then at the other end there are sensors. But we know all of that from science, this ambience. This is a lesson from the big experimental sciences. There have been – even before the Internet was invented, and during the last decades, we have been using science to that, to the combination of data acquisition, data control and data communication. And I think part of the sociology of the Internet has been already at work in the large laboratories, of physics, of astronomy and in other fields.
What is the lesson I gained from my experience? I think it’s the following: The future Internet as the current one will expand enormously – individually – of course, we will expand the back Office of our organizations. We will not see it. The majority of – 99 percent of the future Internet we’ll never, as individuals, see it. We will see it as professionals.
But for the individuals, it will add something to the capacity of becoming amateurs in other fields. Now, we are producing, we are producing art out – evenif our pictures on the mobile phones are not so good. We are producing music, we are producing sounds and texts. We are producing – some of us are producing systematic observation, science, the possibility of being together with the Internet and sensors expands the capacities for amateur art and science.
>> SUSANA ROZA: After so many interesting ideas, let me get practical. You talked about political activism, political participation changes and you are a Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education of Portugal. What are you doing for these changes?
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: Well, I’m almost an old man. I’ve been there for quite a while. And in – just the description of – I’ll give you an example –
>> SUSANA ROZA: Okay.
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: – Of my own country and then I’ll give you an example of European history.
First European history. I wrote the draft myself of what was to become the European agenda of the year 2000. And then we have discussed that with the European Commission at the time. There was a big change, because at the – when Benjamin was Commissioner of Research, we were only discussing infrastructure. The world was dominated by the big telecom incubators. They were there and they were discussing fibers and cables and things like that. So that was more or less the same thing as speaking about the airports or speaking about roads.
And then the change from the infrastructure to society, society meant different markets, it meant culture, it meant communication, languages, human participations. At that time in the ’90s, discussing with the leadership of the leading telecom organizations was extraordinary. They thought that the Internet was something that they should do of course. They should spend some money there, but they will never get some profit from it. That was the current wisdom in the beginning of the ’90s.
And when in the year 2000 we have developed that, one of the first actions that was politically possible to achieve as a discussion in Europe was that driving – that driving idea, let’s connect all schools in Europe to the Internet. And in fact, I toured Europe at that time. I was at the presidency, and I toured Europe at that time discussing with the prime ministers office, et cetera. And the most difficult was we had to discuss with the German government, and finally the Deutsch finally said that it was good for the lender and the government and finally the agreement was reached.
So the idea – and I think that basic idea that we had to go directly to the individuals changed the old world. It was not new. It was not new, very frankly. It has been done by the National Science Foundation in the United States years ago, using the network – the academic network for research, and bringing all schools of the country to that academic network.
It was much more difficult in Europe, although the academic network in Europe was better than the academic network in the United States at that time. So the problem was politics.
But the world changed enormously at that time. It changed in my own country. In ’95 and since then, the digital agenda was the main, the major component, constant component on any economic development policy.
And, in fact, if the balance of the technological payments in Portugal now is positive and has been positive for a few years, it’s because of the Internet, it’s because of the Internet services. It’s because of the startup companies. It’s because of – it’s one of the rare sectors where science, technology and University and companies are together and people are flowing from one sector to the other.
I think at the basis of all of that is the idea that the participation of people either as consumer, either as producer, either as inventor, is key to that development. And that changed the frontiers of the organizations.
>> SUSANA ROZA: It’s the same idea we have here today, the participation. So let’s listen to what do they have to ask from remote participation? David?
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: May I add something? In the last general elections for parliament in Portugal, normally it’s no news. The news just existed at the end for the results. But there was news during the day, that Sunday. And the news came from a small Village of 200 or 300 inhabitants. They were boycotting the elections and not allowing the elections to go on, because they had something to complain about. They didn’t have high speed Internet. Now they have.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you. Do we have any questions from the remote participation? And then we will go up there to listen here.
>> DAVID VARONA: Okay. We have different hubs and remote hubs, as you can see on the screen, remote participants. We have a question from Aragon. She says:
>> REMOTE PARTICIPANT: Can we regulate the copyright on Internet and how?
>> SUSANA ROZA: Can we regulate the copyright on the Internet? That’s a big Question. Thank you, David.
You talked about copyright. So what do you think? Who wants to start? Frederic, are you ready or no? I saw your face. I thought you wanted to tell us something.
>> FREDERIC RIEHL: It’s a very interesting Question which is extremely difficult to answer. In some countries copyrights is a very sensitive issue. All countries have copyrights. Now, is legislation we have so far enough to tackle the Internet? I would like to go back to what I said before. Before deciding to legislate on copyright on the television – on the Internet, I beg your pardon, we have to make sure that the end result won’t be worse.
Now, I’ve been working on the information society for a number of years. When we were at the famous Internet summit on the information society, I was able to contribute to a field, the protection of intellectual property.
There were other people who said that it’s not a question of giving anything up. We want to keep a hold on what we have created. There is a right for everyone to have his property protected, economically, and others said we mustn’t block access to knowledge and information just because some people want to have very rigid legislation.
In my opinion, we will always be in the same situation. Some block the development of the Internet because of the balance of interests between copyrights and access to knowledge and freedom. I think that it will – we will be discussing this issue for a very long time yet.
These questions of principle are very hard to deal with, so I really can’t give you a straightforward answer.
So we have to be realistic and get together to find a solution which will be acceptable to all.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Jeroen?
>> JEROEN SCHOKKENBROEK: Can I add to my reflection. Human rights principles apply, legal human rights principles also online. I think this is relevant. Copyright, intellectual property right, is to some extent protected by the European Convention. Property is a human right. You cannot function in society without any profit and it includes intellectual property. Freedom of information, expression, freedom to receive information are equally for human rights.
So my Question is really our national – we have to consider legislating, when they consider amending administering, are they attentive to doing human rights proving, to assure that the right balance is struck, to look at the Internet case law on all of these? The key thing is sanctions. Sanctions must not be disproportionate.
Yes, you have to protect the copyright, but you can’t go too far in the sanctions that you impose. Someone in the predigital era, who had committed plagiarism by violating someone’s IP, and by getting a book and selling it under his own name, clearly there should be sanctions to that and that should be illegal and it is illegal. But did we ever consider denying that person the right to publish anything in book form or in another form in the future?
That is the real Question. One can easily go too far in the sanctions.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you, Elfa?
>> ELFA GYLFADOTTIR: Thank you very much. I would like to take another perspective on this, and that is a problem that we are facing in smaller countries. Obviously we think that when we have a global Internet we will get access to all of these global content. But what we are seeing, for example, in Iceland, is that since a copyright is very much connected to territories, if there is not a large market in these countries, legal alternatives are not being made.
So, for example, it is increasing, for example, in Iceland, because there is no business case for a lot of big companies to have a legal – to have legal alternatives there. People are turning either to piracy or they are buying IP numbers from abroad. They are connecting. Digital activists are going into virtual tunnels, going into IP numbers in other countries, in order to reach content there.
And so this whole structure of how copyright is actually being enforced and thought of is not working. Not at all, and especially for small countries.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you. Sebastian, here in Spain there were several controversies about this issue, weren’t there? What do you now feel about an issue as controversial as copyright?
>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Well, in the global Internet world, the IP, as the Council of Europe member mentioned, is a very important debate and it’s important to be balanced here and to look at the different alternatives in a balanced way. In Spain and also linked to the Iceland representative’s comments, we believe that the global market is not just the domestic market here in Spain, but also the markets, including countries with whom we share languages in America and also in other countries. So we should have models of business which are not just based on the traditional model of copyright but on other alternatives for licensing based on creative comments, for example, specific licenses adapted to the legal situation of each country, which allows each of the entities to respect on the one hand the management of their IPR in different ways.
And each organization, each company, needs to try to understand and understand well what is happening on the Internet and see what the business models are and identify what the users want and give it to them in the best way, so that their business case is viable in each case. Spain will try to manage these two qualities in each way. One for the companies who want to continue to work with just noncopyright models and others who wish to adopt other models. In this sense I believe that the public and private companies have to understand why the Internet is going and what the final users feed and what they want for each of the different business models that I just mentioned.
And also they need to be respectful of the rule of law in each – of the laws in each particular country.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you. Mr. Gago?
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: I’d like to comment on what one of the participants said that civil law for many, many aspects is there. I mean, it should be there for everything. But the change has been the change of scale. The change has been the change of scale. The questions that – fundamentally the questions related to the Internet are the same that were already there with Xerox machines. However, the scale is totally different. And the scale in fact brought many positive developments. One of the positive developments is that the copyright is, of course, protected and very well protected by large scale free piracy and dissemination but not in a traditional way. Because it gives the value to the producer and the value of the producer has increased enormously but not piecemeal.
The fact that someone is – is producing music and music is distributed free of charge all over the world, the value of the producer is very much increased. And it gets the value on a different way.
But in fact that is nothing new. Piracy has been forever a source of progress and a source of globalization.
>> SUSANA ROZA: I’ll ask you please to be brief, because we are – we have ten minutes left. And we have a couple of questions. But I know, Lieven, you want to answer this Question.
>> LIEVEN VERMAELE: Copyright is close to media organizations. I was referring to the paper of the EBU, which is a contribution of what is happening right now around copyright. The whole copyright discussion happened in the satellite world 15 years ago and the cable world 15 years ago. It’s not simple, but similar things started years ago. If we were contributing not only to my country, we were contributing to all of Europe. What we have to do now is to take the best elements of the regimes and apply them to the Internet. Like the principle of the country of origin. Like the collective licensing principles. But that has to be applied in the copyright domain.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Mr. Niebel, anything else that you want to add or are you okay?
>> MICHAEL NIEBEL: I’m totally okay. But of course I just wanted to latch on to what you said, yes, and also, say there is protection of copyright. It’s not that way. Also, on the Internet, it’s just – I think it was very well illustrated by the Icelandic comment, that people who want to get access and legally want to get access very often find it difficult and that we have to make that possible. That’s what we have to do.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you very much. I think someone up there and then you. Your Question, please?
>> AUDIENCE: Good morning. I’m from the European forum. You have discussed political, financial, corporate issues, but I believe that we are missing a focus on something fundamental in this discussion. What is the human value, the ethical value of the Internet for Europeans? How is the Internet changing ourselves, the very nature of human relationships? Thank you.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you. That’s not an easy Question. Who would like to answer it?
Are you thinking?
Anybody from the audience would like to answer? Do you have any thoughts about this?
Mr. Gago, I think you’re ready.
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: It’s making us more free.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Everything is a matter of freedom.
>> JOSE MARIANO GAGO: It’s a question of adding freedom. I think that – you remember the discussion that historians tell us about the story of the TV, when TV was invented. The very idea at that time and the debate at the very invention of the TV was TV was not supposed to be something broadcasted from a single center. The ideas of community TV, et cetera, were there. Of course they were too innocent and they were wrong and nothing of that happened. But now a day, we have been able to produce – to have broadcasts, distributed broadcasts with the Internet. That was the dream of the fathers of the television. And, in fact, it is – it’s come through now. So part of it is true.
Of course, there are big producers, but there are also small producers, and it has added to our dimension of citizenship.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you very much. Your turn for your Question.
>> AUDIENCE: Thank you. Good morning. I’m the special envoy for the Information Society for the French Affairs Ministry.
The comment made about the marketplace is good, but there is one element that the digital environment brings is the capacity to share. In a nutshell, the industrial society has produced a mechanism that basically creates 5 percent added value altogether in a competitive environment. The political debate in the last 200 years has been where do you give those 5 percent? To those who bring the money and the entrepreneurial resource or the people who produce? And it’s the debate from left to right that have permeated our Democratic societies for the last 200 years. The typical equation is 2 plus 2 is 8, because if I get 2, you get 2, we share, we both have four. And you can even go to hundreds of thousands if I make those four available to everybody who wants to connect.
So the Question is, the value that is created is both a social and economic value. On one extreme, if you share everything, the question is how do you produce? And do you find the production of content? Knowing that the cost of producing is going so much down that it becomes less important to ensure financing of production.
And on the other hand, you can have a mechanism where the control of this incredible value goes to the Blockbusters that produce $2 billion for one single film.
In between, what is the debate about where do you put the balance between what can be shared, what can be paid, and where is the optimal combination between social and economic value?
And I give two examples that you’ve been discussing that are typical examples of that. Copyright and the infrastructure. There was a question floating earlier on, should it become financed by the public or should it become – remain financed by the private sector?
Obviously the right question is not this one. It’s not an either/or. It’s how do you combine? How do you have public incentives that help neutralize infrastructures in zones where there never will be an economic value for the infrastructure to be put in place? And where, for instance, utilizing fiber among the different operators requires just a small amount of subsidy to bring the thing to the economic viability level. That is the kind of combination.
And the title of the session is public and economic value. I would encourage you to replace it by social and economic value. Because one is monitor and the other one is not.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you very much. Lieven, you were making faces?
>> LIEVEN VERMAELE: It’s a good remark. It touches on the fundamental point, which is value for the society. But it’s a policy decision, and it can be on a regional, national, European level, and this whole discussion about where is the public investment, where is the investment done by companies. We talked about fibers. It’s been going on for ten years now. It’s a policy decision.
And now I’m stepping out of my EBU organization, but we have to be brave in Europe. We have to say we as policymakers, we have to help to make this happen or not. Otherwise, we will be stuck for the coming five years further. Therefore, you need to brave policymakers.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you very much. We just have a couple of minutes left. Anybody wants to add something? Michael?
>> MICHAEL NIEBEL: I can do my spiel?
>> SUSANA ROZA: I’m so sorry. Of course. Three minutes for you.
>> MICHAEL NIEBEL: I would feel more comfortable if I could say a few words. I’ll not do my opening spiel, but I’ll react to what people said.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Great.
>> MICHAEL NIEBEL: Just on the last thing, I wanted to latch on to what Mr. Gago said. We got freer. Yes, we got access to information that we never would have gotten. I live in Brussels. I get all of the information from the linguistic zones, I have access to the languages that I know best. I get information about stuff I would have never known and medical stuff, there are blogs, everything. That changes, fundamentally, interaction.
To what Frederic said, is there a change? And legislation? Be careful. We have been. I mean, there is one fundamental, what is legal or legal offline or online. It’s not that it’s a different space. The legal space is the same. So, just start from that. And then careful with legislation. We saw some of the problems in ’95, that there are privacy challenges and challenges for copyright. We slowly saw: Is our legislation good enough to cope with these things? And then when it doesn’t prove to be basically Internet approved, are we going to change? And we did and we continue to adapt. But you shouldn’t go for every new technology and change legislation, basically, in a nontechnology neutral way. So that’s one question for the speed.
And then what minister Gago said, the nonglobal nature, this is one of the challenges to keep the Internet global and there are many forces that don’t want this anymore. And there are many possibilities to fragment the Internet. So that is one of the challenges that we face.
Secondly, you talked about the move to the Internet of things. Sometimes it’s presented as this is going to be the clean slate thing. It’s something totally different. No. It’s an evolution. It’s going to be massive. It’s slower than we thought. But it’s an evolution.
And then also to what the gentleman from Juniper said, with the Internet, we have to be careful. It has been successful. There has been an explosive use of the Internet. There has been a lot of innovation in the core but also on the edges.
And we have to keep the conditions that this innovation can take place and that’s one of the big, big challenges that we have.
And then Susana what you said about the youth, or the gentleman that represented the youth. There are differences, which we have the older generation that is preparing legislation. We have to take – here, if we look at privacy, there is a total shift. When we had the privacy act, which I started working with in 1990, we didn’t even know about the Internet. Now, if you look at people kind of going to Facebook and telling a lot about their lives, there is a fundamental shift in their attitude towards privacy. Or going into more basic things, when you talk about, for instance, how does a child function? My kids use different fingers to do something. They use this finger. Now, this is a different neural networking. And if you’re on the screen and you do counter intuitive things for your normal, if you climb trees, you suddenly have the different networking. And that’s a basic impact where changes take place for the younger generation, and we have to keep that in mind. Thanks.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you very much. It’s 11:31, so we have to wrap up. Lee is coming. Thank you very much.
>> VLADIMIR RADUNOVIC: I don’t know if I’ll have the same value of minutes that the speakers have. I have nine pages that I wrote down. It will be tough to summarize it. I did not try to structure this summary, because it’s not possible. It was very interactive, very interesting. Until the end, I didn’t have time to structure it. I’ll go through the key points that I underlined. I’m sure you’ll have more.
Basically, what I felt was that the discussion was mostly mentioning on one hand the market power of the Internet and the importance of it for development. On the other hand, for human rights and public value of Internet. And I’ll not place any of these comments into any categories, but you can do it yourselves.
We had the emphasis of the importance of the Internet for development and generally the digital interests here as well for employment and more knowledge to get involved into development.
Then we had how to make markets attractive, a marketplace Internet, making an attractive marketplace, we needed user access, we needed to provide access to services and services for service providers. We needed to involve open standards to make any cooperation. We need to talk about copyrights, and there was more about that later. We needed to discuss about privacy and freedom of expression. That was on the market side.
On the public value side, we had the emphasis that the Internet is also the space for Democratic processes, and that it has a huge and ever growing public value as well.
The human rights are a very important perspective of it, and some principles that we have in the real world should be transformed.
We had a good comment that we needed proportionality in any kind of regulation or sanctions or whatever. Not to over regulate, not fully to leave it under regulated, if there is a need for that.
So, basically, creating a good environment for regulation. We had the good example from a country that even if you have a volcano and you have an economic crisis, think about a model to develop not only economic but a public value. Which is from an island which was creating an environment for, in this case, new media, to have a good environment to operate and register and provide services there.
Then we had several challenges in that sense, which is how to provide data retention, and the question where the data are going to be stored. And then we moved to the question of jurisdiction, globalization, harmonization of all of the policies and regulations. We had a question from a remote on how ICTs impact eastern European countries and what is the IG policy in eastern European countries.
And we have seen mostly, at least in the case of Albania, eastern European countries are concerned with infrastructure and basic services for the time being.
Probably less on privacy and maybe copyrights at this point, but that they are quite willing to invest in ICT infrastructure and service, even though the budget is quite constrained, because they see that this is a value.
We have been talking about how to regulate the market or whether to do that, and one of the important things was to show trusts to stakeholders, involve them and listen to what stakeholders have to say.
There was an emphasis on European cultural diversity and values, that we should try to share in the digital world, to use this value of the European content.
We were talking about the fact that Internet is changing the politics, it’s changing the world. And the participation and eParticipation is something that is definitely changing the way how the policies are being done. We were talking about or questioning if some of the economic models are set well, if maybe the economic models should be changed in some way, also, to create a unique marketplace in Europe.
And then we moved to copyrights, which is definitely a hot question and I think it’s not a good moment to stop this session now because there will be plenty of things to say afterwards. But let’s say that we mentioned that any kind of sanctions to be introduced should be proportional and again not violating other principles than copyrights.
We have been talking about how the Internet is changing. There was a question, changing human rights, our lives, and we heard that the impact on youth and new generations will probably be the best example of that.
Finally, we had the last mentioning was on technology and neutrality. Basically, we have to, when we’re working on policy, we have to try a technological neutrality, so not to change the legislation upon each and every technology that comes. And I usually give an example. When you see the sign switch off your mobile phones, which is like a mobile phone across, that you never ask if this is really an iPhone or it’s an old fashioned phone. It’s the same symbol of a phone that you cannot use. That is the same thing here.
And the thing that we can conclude is: We chose a key question how to find the balance between sharing the value that the Internet brings and how to find the balance between social and economical value of the Internet.
I don’t have the answer. We have heard many options, but I think that this is something that we can build up further discussions on. Thank you.
>> SUSANA ROZA: Thank you, Vladamir. Thank you for your attention and expertise. We have 25 minutes for your coffee. And enjoy you’re big 2010. Thank you.