Welcome and introductions – 2010

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29 April 2010 | 9:00-9:45
Programme overview 2010


  • Sebastian Muriel, General Director of Red.es (Chairman)
  • Alejandro Arranz, Madrid City Council
  • Carlos López-Blanco, International Office Director of Telefónica Corporation
  • Philippe Boillat, Director General of Human Rights and Legal Affairs, Council of Europe
  • Jovan Kurbalija, Director, Diplo Foundation
  • Cornelia Kutterer, Senior Policy Manager, Microsoft
  • Matthias Fiechter, European Youth Forum
  • Jorge Perez, IGF Spain


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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.

>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Good morning everybody. It’s on honor for me to be here today. The City Council of Madrid and Diplo, the ministry Red.Es and we’re very happy to be at this third EuroDIG forum, which has been consolidated as one of the most important discussions on the Internet and supports. And we will provide information on all of the IGFs, which are being held in September in Lithuania.

Just a few weeks ago, in the La Grande declaration between ministries of the European Union and the Latin American minister, we had the chance to discuss and debate on a number of subjects and we supported the idea of a debate forum, which are very open, as the case of EuroDIG, where amongst the different stakeholders in this sector, ranging from public administrations to the private sector, to the civil society, to discuss on those issues that are concerned about where we are going with Internet and to dream a little bit about Internet of the future for 2020. And these reflection areas, given the number of people attending this meeting, more than 400, and given the level of the presentations that we’re going to be able to see over the next two days, not just here in the room, but also through Internet, this is being webcast, streaming in direct, and we will come up with some interesting conclusions on this debate, which will provide information to all of those people on the different areas of responsibility, public administration, at the European level, at the national level and also at the more local level. But also private companies within this sector and this civil society, we will be able to take the right decisions towards this new Internet model.

Europe already counts for more than 25 percent of the Internet users who are now connected to the network or have very important relative weight in the global Internet. And over the next two days our challenge is to try to understand what role Europe should play in this new Internet model. And just a few days ago in Europe and Granada, we approved the strategy which sets the stage for their future European digital agenda. And Europe has to take those measures to play a bigger and increasingly bigger role in the role of Internet. EuroDIG is the forum and in Granada we said that Internet development should continue with the Tunis agreement, with democracy and the full participation of everyone in the definition of this Internet. This forum is going to guarantee this participation and dialog, and to do that today we have the people here at the table with me with the different perspectives that can be provided by these different participants in this forum. And this vision, this variety of state actors, players, and people from other areas and other fields, will allow us also to have this wealth of debate.

Years ago, in Spain, we had what was called the plan Avanza. It was a very good example of a multi-stakeholder approach and receiving feedback from each one of these representatives and agents to build a social development model for information in Spain. And that’s the case of the OECD study as one of the models that could allow for the coordination between the different governments at the European, national, regional and even local level with industry and with the participation of social associations as well.

Internet is increasingly more important not only at the social level, but also the relative weight that it has on the economy. We will also talk about that this morning.

And during the course of these presentations, we will have two important milestones. We will have the approval of two directors, very important for Internet Governance. The first of these was approved in February, and they formalized the European stance on the new context created by this new bilateral agreement between the US government and ICANN. And a second set of cooperative directors was approved on April 21 and that defines the European strategy to support the continuance of IGF, Internet Governance Forum.

So in conclusion, the Spanish presidency wants to express its thanks not only to the organizers but also to all of the participants in this EuroDIG forum, which represents a great opportunity, so that all stakeholders can exchange ideas on information technology and how they can improve our standard of living, both today and tomorrow.

The next important event on the agenda, whereas Chairman we talked about this, and the press conference that I commit to bring the conclusions from these two days of work, is the Internet Governance Forum, which will take place in Lithuania in September, the 14th and 15th of September of this year. So without further ado and thanking you for your attention, I’ll give the floor to Alejandro Arranz, from the Madrid City Council.

>> ALEJANDRO ARRANZ: Good morning everyone. I want to say hello to all of my colleagues here at the table. The first message that I want to give to you is this welcome to the City of Madrid. We’re right now in one of the hubs or nodes of the information society. This is the headquarters of Telefonica, which is within the City of Madrid. So, I wish you a very nice stay, that you enjoy this meeting, this forum, and also that you can – that you have the opportunity to enjoy the city and get to know our fine city.

I also would like to make a special thanks to the organizers of this forum for dialog on Internet Governance, and it’s coordinator, Jorge Perez, for inviting the City Council of Madrid to represent the civil society. That’s the role that we have. The Internet cannot be built for citizens unless they are involved. This has to be side by side with the civil society fabric. And this is often forgotten.

The City Council of Madrid has been working for a number of years along these lines and has created within the organizations of the city. It’s difficult to maintain this role of working with and for citizens. Just two weeks ago we passed an ordinance for the development of the information society, which in contrast to what are usually municipal regulations, the so-called ordinances, it does not prohibit, it does not limit or strictly regulate, but rather promotes favors, fosters the use of citizens’ rights to gain access to culture and knowledge.

That’s something that needs to be explained very well in much detail. And this did require quite a bit of debate, but that has to be our compass that really directs the direction that we take in the information society. Cities and civil societies in these debates can play an important role.

These debates on the Internet of the future, the Internet for 2020, everything will have changed, as with us just mentioned. There was a book that just came out. But things will change quite a bit by 2020, but not just technology, there will be very serious changes from the copyright business models, organizations, and even economic sectors. Commercial commerce will have changed within 10 years. No one knows where the changes bring us. And there is a certain risk. If we don’t act, and if we don’t know how to select between one choice and another, we could find ourselves lost.

Associations, governments, really do need to wake up and have some clear direction and instructions, and that’s the role of this European dialog, and this forum for Internet Governance can play an important role in that sense.

So we need to hear the voices that say things very clearly so that Europe does not fall behind in this race. And our children, of course, are just used to using the Internet, so we need to pay close attention.

So welcome once again and I wish you very fruitful work over the next two days.

>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Now we will hear from Carlos Lopez-Blanco, the International Office Director of Telefonica.

>> CARLOS LOPEZ-BLANCO: Thanks very much, Sebastian. The facilities which we are in and which Telefonica feels especially proud comprise the center of the headquarters of Telefonica Europe. This is a total of 200 square meters, and we work here, 12,000 professionals, every day. The technology of the facilities were designed to provide a new work culture, more open and more flexible, and as a symbol of the transformation process that Telefonica has undergone in recent years and still is ongoing.

I would like especially to stress the commitment with the environment. As a result of this commitment, we are working on sustainable architecture, which consists of the optimization of climate conditions and more efficient use of resources. Probably the best example of that is the solar energy production plant located on the roof that covers the whole building. This plant is the largest of this kind in Europe.

We would like at the same time to make the facilities and to have these facilities at the disposal of the whole telecom and Internet sector. This is the reason why we are especially grateful and proud to host together the EuroDIG.

First of all, let me thank the Council of Europe for its special awareness of those topics involving the Internet as it considers the Internet to be an essential factor for the future of Europe, for Europe’s competitive position in the world and for improving the world European citizens. I want to thank the forum for the opportunity that Telefonica has been given to host this unique event at its facilities.

I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the work that the Spanish IGF is performing regarding the debates on the Internet work. From our strategic public policy as well as regulatory point of view, for our telecommunications company today, the central debate focuses on the Internet. No other debate has the impact and importance of the Internet one. No other debate has the ability to influence the future design of our sector as the Internet has. From this perspective, the future of the Internet is critical for us as a telecom company. And in this context, the Internet Governance plays a critical role. The Internet has evolved very quickly in recent years, and with Internet, the society, the economy as well and our lives have changed. Those changes have generated new debates with a range from management and monitoring of critical resources to privacy, intellectual property, and network neutrality.

The Internet is today the most important physical infrastructure in our current world, as critical as motor ways, high speed trains or airports. While the Internet has changed and has become a major economic and social factor, it’s obvious that the roles and governance of the Internet have to be adapted to this new situation. The Internet needs to be a global infrastructure and rely on clear and stable rules.

Because of this, we consider that the debates regarding the Internet are critical for the future of the telecom sector. We at Telefonica have been actively involved in all forums dealing with the Internet debate. What is more, we have been actively supporting the IGF and the Spanish IGF. Currently, we believe that the main challenge facing Europe and the telecommunications sector is what will be the European position in the Internet world.

The commission has been committed to placing the Internet at the center of its political agenda. The drafting of a new digital agenda has, in our opinion, stressed the right path. The design of an ambitious digital agenda should foster the development of the Internet within Europe. The European Commission, along with the telecommunications and the Internet sector, must deal with very important issues: New generation networks, resolving the debate of network neutrality, and being compatible with the management of networks by the operators, and to resolve fundamental issues involving the single privacy and intellectual property.

Let me thank all of you for your attendance at this event and I hope that you will have a very fruitful outcome of this debate and you will enjoy your day in district A and in Madrid. Thank you very much.


>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Thanks very much, Carlos. Now, I’m going to give the floor to Philippe Boillat, the Secretary-General from the Council of – Deputy Secretary-General of the Council of Europe.

>> PHILIPPE BOILLAT: The Deputy Secretary-General could not attend, as there is a very important meeting and she asked me to replace her.

Mr. Chairman and ladies, EuroDIGgers, on behalf of the Council of Europe, as acting secretariat to the EuroDIG, I would like to thank you all for your interest in the EuroDIG. I would particularly like to thank our Spanish colleagues from Telefonica and the Madrid City Council for hosting us today and tomorrow. I want to thank the colleagues from the presidency of the European Union, in particular Red.Es, for their support. And moreover, let me say the Spanish IGF, OFCOM Switzerland, the European Broadcasting Union and DiploFoundation, thank you for their agreed supports in helping to organize and facilitate this dialog.

We have practically doubled the number of participants registrations compared to last year’s event.

I have been told that we have around 400 registrations for today and tomorrow. And now with the added dynamic of more than 50 remote participants in over 10 capital city remote hubs across Europe, it is increasingly clear that this dialog matters and has become a currency in itself.

EuroDIG is helping to build communities and enable persons, bodies, organizations, institutions, and communities across Europe who would otherwise not meet to come together to exchange and discuss. I believe that this dialog is helping us to realize that the Internet is a public asset with public value, as well as a marketplace that offers competitive advantage. It is a space for many important aspects of our lives and our values for democracy.

In particular, by rendering our governments more transparent and accountable. For freedom of expression in enabling us to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference regardless of frontiers.

As a means for us to respond to crisis situations, such as who is connected to the achievement of the UN’s millennium development goals, in managing pandemics as well as in coping with natural disasters. And I could of course continue.

Mr. Chairman, whether or not access to the Internet should be a fundamental right, human right, I am convinced that the Internet offers more than 425 million European users a unique and quite a typical freedom for our everyday activities, communication, information, knowledge, commercial transactions, leisure, which has resulted in the legitimate expectation that the minimum level of core Internet services are accessible and affordable, secure, reliable, and ongoing.

We must, therefore, preserve and harness this freedom in particular by increasing broadband access to significant proportions of the population in the 47 Member States of the Council of Europe, while at the same time taking notes that in facilitating new technologies, there needs to be a commensurate increase in the responsibility of them. Advancing the use of ICTs alone is not a panacea. We have to strike a balance between their views and the protection and the respect for our core value: Namely, human rights, democracy, and the rule of law, stepping up to make the Internet rights based, development oriented and people censored. This is very much at the heart of the Council of Europe’s work, and we welcome the code of digital rights of eCommunications and online services referred to in the Granada administerial declaration on the European agenda on the 19th of April as an important initiative in empowering users with digital rights, which helps them to deal with the Internet.

It is an initiative of which the Council of Europe would be keen to contribute.

Reflecting as widely as possible on making Internet freedom a priority in and through Europe, in doing so in particular in view of the speech of the US Secretary of State, Mrs. Clinton, on Internet freedom on the 21 st of January, I believe it would be a very good thing to invite the US state department to the Council of Europe to discuss the freedoms and values in order that we can discuss creative issues to discuss cross-border Internet, privacy and data protection as well as government attempts to regulate the Internet. We at the Council of Europe are extremely supportive of the need to engage with our 800 million citizens in our 47 Member States. It is why we are providing EuroDIG secretariat services, why we are inviting an area of different stakeholders to participate, why we are using many of our Council of Europe offices in different parts of central and eastern Europe to act as remote hubs to mobilize local dialog on Internet Governance. The Council of Europe is here to facilitate dialog, share our expertise, to listen and to learn, so that we can develop what you want the Internet to be and to represent, subject to human rights imperatives.

On this basis, I have a question for you to consider and discuss. What would you like the Council of Europe to do with regard to the Internet? How would you like us to respond with regard to your concerns where there is a pressing social need?

Mr. Chairman, the EuroDIGgers in 2009, we took your messages from Geneva back to Strasbourg and used them in the development of new standard setting work. In 2010, we are ready to do the same again. Let us use this dialog to voice our concerns and move forward European views about the Internet and what it should be.

Consider this dialog as a means of shaping the pan-European agenda for the Internet. Let us listen more actively, speak more constructively and understand more comprehensively what our societies are calling for.

Thank you very much for your kind attention.


>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Thank you very much. Thank you also to the Council of Europe for its support on EuroDIG and all the work that you are doing on Internet Governance.

I introduce the coordinator for the Internet Governance program from the DiploFoundation.

>> VLADIMIR: I assume that many of you have watched the movie Avatar. Remote participation is one of the things that is a key feature of this event, and you’ll see throughout the event how good it may be. But I think we made a step forward with the remote participation with this session. It was not me that was supposed to be here. It was the Director of Diplo, Jovan Kurbalija. He is stuck in Europe. I’m his Avatar. And it’s funny that he chose an Avatar with more hair. But that’s his option. And the bad thing is that he is probably watching this remotely, but that’s my consequence.

I’m pleased to be here on behalf of Diplo. And you’ll hear the words of Diplo. We have been invited here to welcome you as well as co-organizers and supporters of the EuroDIG.

And then the Question is why, why are we involved in an organization of something like that? Diplo is an educational NGO that provides training capacity development initiatives. One of the keynotes that we want to emphasize in our trainings and activity is inclusiveness, effective participation. It’s a way of involving different stakeholders in the process as EuroDIG is about, so for all of the stakeholders to feel the ownership of the initiative. And there we have the remote participation and eTool, which is important to bring in the people who are not physically able to come here.

But inclusiveness is not only about participation, it’s more about meaningful participation. And it means that the people who are participating should have a solid knowledge of what it is about. And that’s where we go to capacity development and the importance of capacity development, which is empowering professionals, individuals, and institutions that need to be involved in this dialog through trainings, through research, through fellowship policy initiatives. And one of the things that we commonly do within our trainings is for the best students, we provide the opportunity to participate in the events like that. And you will notice that there are ten remote hubs around Europe for this EuroDIG event in various cities, gathering, 10, 20, 50 people in each of the cities. And this was a collaborative action of our community, folks, many other friends from the EuroDIG initiative, Council of Europe and other partners. But more than that, you will also meet very dear friends who are the fellows now with us here in Madrid, who are the best students of the program and with the assistance of the Swiss OFCOM.

Basically, the new fellows, this community that we are creating together are the ones that will lead the process forward, are the ones that are going to create local initiatives, create local hubs, move the discussion on a local level and basically bring up the cooperation on a European level and probably really produce a meaningful Pan-European Dialog on Internet Governance.

Let me finish here, let me thank again the Telefonica, Council of Europe, Swiss, France, and all of you, all the other partners for assisting with this initiative. And let me wish all of us a very successful meeting. Thank you.


>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Thank you very much, Vladamir. Now, Cornelia Kutterer, Senior Policy Manager from Microsoft.

>> CORNELIA KUTTERER: Thank you. Microsoft is extremely honored to be on the opening panel today. Microsoft is a global company, but it’s a European company with considerable investment in research and innovation that contributes to cross skills and deployment. I would like to thank EuroDIG for organizing this event, the Council of Europe support, Telefonica, the Council of Madrid. This is an important platform to discuss the many issues around Internet Governance. EuroDIG 2010, which brings together all stakeholders of the Internet community, civil society, industry, governments and other organizations, are a key to exchange views and ideas on cutting edge issues which will have a huge impact on how our society develops in the future. We do share the view of EuroDIG that a multi-stakeholder dialog is essential to the development of Internet policies and the management of resources.

The architecture of the Internet is global and policy discussions have far-reaching impacts. We already heard a number of them: Privacy, security, law enforcement, freedom of speech, net neutrality, intellectual property, access, and accessibility.

By participating in an open dialog, we can develop more informed policies, speed the sharing of best practice and create an online environment that enables creativity and innovation, protects the rights of users, and builds human and institutional capacity.

Here I would also like to mention the ICT’s basis, the business action to support the information society, which supports equally these Internet Governance discussions. We are pleased to see that EuroDIG is getting increased acknowledgement from all stakeholders, and we do believe that this is the right way forward in how Internet Governance needs to be addressed on a global level equally as on a regional level.

I would like to encourage the participants in today’s event to continue to look for opportunities to advance this multi-stakeholder dialog approach even after our sessions today and tomorrow. There are many important ongoing dialogs taking place in a variety of forums and covering a range of important IG issues. And here I want to mention the global network initiative, GNI, which brings together a diverse collection of ICT companies, human rights organizations, academics, investments, and leaders, all of them who want to advance rights on the online environment. GNI members worked together to develop a set of principles that will promote freedom of expression and privacy on the Internet. We all agreed on implementation guidelines that give more guidance to ICT companies and how to put the principles into practice, including when faced with government demands for censorship and disclosure of users’ personal information.

Over time, the aim is for the principles and implementation guidelines to take root as a global stand out for the ICT sector to be adopted by companies worldwide and embraced by governments and international bodies.

I would also like to mention that there are other important initiatives currently starting, like the due digital process in the United States, for example. The GNI is just one of the number of examples of how dialog promotes sensible balanced solutions to the challenges that confront us.

Over the next two days, we have a similar opportunity to exchange ideas and consider solutions. I very much welcome this opportunity and thank again EuroDIG and EuroDIGgers and the participants here today for creating and contributing to it. Thank you very much.


>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Thank you. Now, Matthias Fiechter, the European Youth Forum. Thank you very much.

>> MATTHIAS FIECHTER: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I’m here proudly representing the most exotic group on this podium not only because I’m not wearing a tie, but because there are not too many very young people around. If you look around, you won’t see that many young faces.

Me as a youth representative – I’m almost 30 years old, so I don’t count anyway – welcome to all of you. Thank you again for having us here.

I would like to talk about the generational gap that we still see in terms of how generations view the Internet. There is no digital natives in here. We’re all digital immigrants, even myself. We have gotten used to a global village. We talked about that. The world is becoming a global village. Everyone is connected to everyone.

It’s not a village anymore, it’s a huge city that looks like New York, Tokyo, all together, just a bit more traffic.

Now as former Villagers, we have been forced to move to this new Metropolis and we tend to focus on the dark sides. We see the back alleys, the wastelands, and we are scared that the young generation mixed with the wrong people could end up in the wrong places and get in trouble. What we tend to forget are all of the positive sides of this great city. Like every great city, it offers spaces for discussion, it offers art, it offers a mixture of cultures and a marketplace of ideas. And just the simple fact that billions of people are living in this Internet city together peacefully.

Now our young generation, again as I say, people a lot younger than myself, they have grown up in this city.

For them the Internet has never been a global village. It’s always been a huge, sprawling city and they know the place better than we do. They don’t know everything about it, but they are learning. Every day when they live in it, they’re learning. They’re learning where to go, what they like, where they can share ideas and discuss and they also learn where not to go. Some of them learn the hard way, they just go to places they shouldn’t have been to. Most of them learn like we all do by communicating with their peers. Now, the trouble is that this Metropolis that the Internet has become is being run and governed by former Villagers like ourselves. There is not a single person who has grown up in this Metropolis who actually has a say when it comes to Internet Governance as concrete policy.

Now, the rules that all of us, we are making, I’m not saying they are all bad. Some of them are really necessary. Some of them definitely are needed. So I’m not asking you to step down and just leave the place to itself and let the young people run it. The only thing I’m asking you is that before you make decisions, before you decide on your policy, that you include young people in the process, that you ask them: Listen, you have grown up here. How do you want the place to be?

Now, the fact that we’re here, myself and the delegation from the youth forum, proves that you’re willing to do so and the Council of Europe especially has been a champion of youth participation for long years. So great, thank you to Lee Hibbard and the whole staff of the Council of Europe for having us here. If you’re interested in having a dialog with youth, we offer you the opportunity this afternoon.

We are proposing an alternative workshop. It’s not on the program, but it’s on the list. It’s on youth issues in regard to with Internet Governance, eParticipation, media literacy, privacy issues. I don’t know at this moment in what room it will be, but I’m sure the organizers can help you out there. We really would appreciate if you could be there and join us in the discussion. It’s at 2:30 like the other workshops.

Let me finish by thanking all of the organizers, Telefonica, City of Madrid, OFCOM, Council of Europe, for inviting us here, for giving us the opportunity to contribute, speak and give our input to this whole thing. Thank you very much.


>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Thank you very much. We will finish this multi-stakeholder panel with the Spanish IGF, the coordinator, Jorge Perez.

>> JORGE PEREZ: Thank you everyone. I’m here today representing the Spanish IGF. And I would like to welcome you all warmly and thank EuroDIG, firstly. You placed trust in us in order that we were able to organize this event, because it was the first time that EuroDIG left the Geneva world and chose Spain. So we are grateful for placing their trust in us, that’s to say in the Spanish IGF.

Secondly, I’d like to thank Telefonica and Red.Es, the Spanish government, and the Madrid City Council, because they have shown great commitment in providing us partnership and support to the event.

Also, I thank all of you for being here today, and all of you who are in there in the room, because we haven’t had a bad start, have we? We already kick started the debate and we’re breaking records in terms of attendees, in terms of number of remote participants, and I believe that the start has been great.

What we need to do from now on, and we’re running a little bit behind, and what we need to do is because we’re 15 minutes behind is get down to work. And my hope is that that we go forward and that we are able to work well. And I hope that the Madrid messages will be very significant for Internet Governance. Thank you.


>> SEBASTIAN MURIEL: Without further ado, let me just thank everyone who is here on the stage and we will move on to the next panel discussion. The faces will change here on the stage and I want to introduce Susana Roza from Spanish TV.