Developing Countries Participation in Global Internet Governance
04 September 2014 - A Workshop on in Istanbul,Turkey
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This is the output of the realtime captioning taken during the IGF Istanbul, Turkey, meetings. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the session, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
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>> MODERATOR: Thank you for attending our workshop today. It is participation in global IG. We are going to focus on ICANN and in particular the example of generic names supporting our organisation.
So my name is Rafik Dammak, I'm the Chair of the Non‑commercial Stakeholder Group within ICANN. We have several panelists today trying to have some diversity, geographic diversity and gender diversity but mostly the background and experiences regarding the participation and the issue for Developing Countries to be involved in policy making process.
So, maybe as I expand, the title can be misleading somehow, however, it is really if you read the description of the workshop, we want to focus and to talk more concrete way about how or what kind of issue faced by Developing Countries in terms of participation. And we talk the example of the generic name or GTLD because there was a lot of discussion when the new GTLD programme was launched in 2011.
So, we start with really quick introduction of our panelists. So we will have 3 to 5 minutes for each panelist to introduce quickly themselves and to make a brief statement. And we will start from my right with Baher Esmat.
>> B. ESMAT: Thank you. Good afternoon, everyone. My name is Baher Esmat with ICANN. I manage the ICANN stakeholder relationships in the Middle East. And I happen to be speaking first in the session.
So, just looking at the title of the discussion today, participation from Developing Countries in IG in general, maybe more specifically, ICANN, maybe more specifically, GNSO, I'd like to perhaps begin by addressing the issue of participation and just to highlight quickly there are different levels of participation and perhaps different means of participation.
Working in one developing region like the Middle East, we have been dealing with some of the challenges that are facing communities in the Middle East, and the different levels. And when I say different levels, I mean we can talk about the level of a participatory process where everyone can participate, and this is a model that is not very common in the Middle East at national or regional levels. So if you take it to the international level, it becomes more challenging for a community in the region to become effective component of that global thing.
Another level is, if you look at specific functions, specific roles that different organisations play like ICANN and others, then you have to look for what is the state for community in the country or the region to participate in this process. What is in it for them?
So, because this is an introductory part, I'm not going to delve into details, but basically what we are trying to do as staff, who engages constantly with community, we try to first take the issues to them rather than inviting them to come and participate with the issues. We do a lot of education. We do a lot of awareness building, to explain the general concept of Internet Governance, why are they important, why stakeholders should participate and so forth. We try to encourage and support regional and national IGFs and others for people to participate in.
And then, depending on the specific stakeholder group, we work with them on addressing specific issues. So just to give you one quick example: a few years ago when ICANN was working on the process to introduce internationalized domain names in different languages, this was a very dear topic to community in the Middle East and part of Asia. They simply use other languages other than the Latin script. So in this particular topic, there was more interest compared to other topics for community in the Middle East to come and participate and they took part in different working groups within ICANN, including some of the working groups as well. This is specific.
And then, after going to them, and trying to engage with them, we -- not after, but maybe along with that, we also encourage them to come to ICANN through different programs like fellowship and others and to participate effectively in ICANN and we make it clear to them, at least I personally, I think that participation in ICANN is not an easy task for newcomers. So, I tell them, you come for one meeting and the second meeting and third meeting, I mean you should be okay if you feel that you still cannot engage. That is the process.
So, through sharing information, through encouraging them to maybe comment on some of the activities that are relevant to them, they come to -- or become more engaged and we'll see some examples of the Middle East of individuals and organisations who have become, over the years, more engaged and more actively participating in ICANN. Thanks.
>> MODERATOR: Thank you. It's good to talk about the Middle East. We are now starting to go through region by region, and I think we'll go with small islands in the Caribbean.
>> PANELIST: Thank you, Rafik. I'm also from Latin America region. So I hope that my perspective can also build on that experience. I'm the immediate past chair of ICANN and as well as the Chair of the Internet Society, so my perspective will be grounded in that background.
The developing country presence in the global Internet's governance takes many forms. One critical area is DNS policy creation and the buildout of the DNS industry with other services. IG organisations pushing in the direction of outreach to increase participation and representation from the developing world. However, Participation and representation benchmarks are no longer the suitable measure of success in these initiatives. Developing Countries representatives with the support of IG organisations must be able to facilitate the stable and secure growth of Internet and the DNS industry in their countries.
For the DNS, the new benchmarks must be specific targets under the Registration of new gTLD's Accredited Registrars and Registries. IG organisations need to transition to encourage this growth. Within ICANN, Developing Countries are still a minority voice and mechanisms to support their representatives people often consider higher priorities.
There is a sacrifice of time, cost and energy to be present at these meetings. It is difficult to be representative and to engage in policy creation. For now, there is little knowledge of the capitalization of IG issues to recruit the best talent and to bring all Developing Country representatives onboard.
For instance, in the last round of new gTLD's, the application fee was still too high for many developing world applicants to take advantage of the applicant support programme provided by ICANN. This demonstrates that even such a well‑intentioned programme was simply out of touch with reality.
This year, the U.N. focuses on small island developing state issues, and one positive sign is that ICANN has initiated meetings with representatives and it is hoped that the mechanisms employed shall include these 51 countries in the multi‑stakeholder policy development process And DNS development Agenda.
By supporting such cross geographic communities of interest, ICANN is attempting to access a facilitator to bring proficiency to encourage participation in the GNSO process. However, this initiative must be complimented with other programs to get representatives of Developing Countries in the door. There has been an investment by the community in order to create this group. There has to be an investment by the community in order to create this group and to create equity so we can all fill this room. Thank you.
>> MODERATOR: Just maybe to put in context, you talked about the example of initiative support applicant working group which was kind of made cross communicative to help applicants from developing countries and to apply and to join that process. I mean, the result was mixed but we can talk about this later.
And we will move to Africa with Ephraim Percy Kenyanito and he will speak about participation in GNSO, particularly since you are a newcomer and joined ICANN meetings as a fellow so you can give us that perspective.
>> E. KENYANITO: Hi. I'm Ephraim Kenyanito from Kenya. And great to be here. It's great that you're talking about Developing Countries, especially global Internet Governance and most specifically the GNSO process. And she just said most of the points I wanted to say but then I like to talk about the multilingual-isation of the Internet. It's good that we are thinking about this proactively, ensuring that countries and all stakeholders continue in this process so you can continue preserving the language and the culture of the stakeholders of people from Africa and other Developing Countries so that they can come onboard, the global digital divide can be reduced.
And then, something that will be of concern to the African continent is the dot Africa domain as the process of new gTLD's. We find that ICANN, not just ICANN but the whole intergovernance community supports this initiative and ensures that the domain ‑‑ Africa can have the dot Africa domain very, very fast so that delays can be dealt with very fast.
Then as she pointed out about resources, time, getting into this space, Internet governance space, from Developing Countries. It is good that the community is investing, the programme that brings people from Developing Countries, ICANN fellowship. Also it is good that different stakeholders, Civil Society, business, organisations such as ICANN, are thinking about these, about Developing Countries and more so Africa, and we need to support such initiatives and then something in between, you cannot just bring people to attend something and participate in the policy making processes. You need to help to understand this. So supporting initiatives in such as the Latin America ‑‑ there is a summer school. There is an African summer school for governance.
Supporting these initiatives like this community, ICANN, and Bill Drake was in South Africa last year to talk to the African about Internet Governance and about all of this. So it is good that we are doing better and we just need to enhance these efforts. That's about it. And I'll be happy to discuss more. Thank you.
>> MODERATOR: Now moving to Asia. Izumi Okutani. For someone living in Japan, I'm mispronouncing your name. Okutani-san, please introduce yourself and give us a perspective will see from IR and also in the participation in DNS.
>> I. OKUTANI: My name is Izumi Okutani and I'm a member of the ISPCP within the GNSO and I'm also actively engaged in the community within Asia‑Pacific region where -- apricot, where a lot of the technical operators within the region participate, including many from the Developing Countries.
So I would like to give my perspective within the Asia‑Pacific and especially focusing on the perspectives from the technical community. So, within the IRSPCP of the GNSO, active participation from Developing Countries is very, very limited. So regional balance is relatively good compared to other groups, but we don't have anybody actively participating from Africa. And within the Asia‑Pacific, nobody from Developing Countries actively are giving inputs.
So why is this? So when I look into the other forum I participate in, AP forum, I think most people are not putting so much attention or have interest in getting involved in the ICANN process in the first place. So their priorities are more like, so how can we build the network in my country or how can I get expertise to do this? So those are more than within their priorities than getting involved in developing policies for domain names.
On the other hand, it doesn't mean that there are no policies getting developed in the communities within the Asia‑Pacific. So, issues such as the name collisions as a result of the now gTLD's, or IDM, or while this is not directly within the GNSO process, but workshops are being organised within the ICANN meeting. That is very helpful, and sharing technologies if necessary for Developing Countries to learn new things.
So, many people don't know about these details of information being shared and they just think ICANN is someplace that has to deal with domain names but don't feel it effects them. It is pretty important we share with these people that there are things being discussed that affects them plus many people don't know that participation is open as well. So this is maybe something that we can also share in addition.
So what I'm quite happy to see is the ICANN's Asia‑Pacific hub participated in this conference that happened this year within the Asia‑Pacific region to share the latest policies within the ICANN. So, I think it really helped a lot in making people understand, what are the policies being discussed and how does it affect them?
And at this stage, I think people just like more into hearing what is going on rather than building their own opinions and giving feedback. But that would at least be a start because they have to know what is going on to be able to make their choice, whether there is something of interest to participate or not. And, so, I think it is very important that not just within the Asia‑Pacific region and not just within the technical community but with other topics, maybe for business people, they have interests more on what is being developed in terms of new detailed applications or maybe trademark protections people wants to know about the policies within the ICANN related to this.
So, I think it would be good to develop more outreach, awareness raising programs per interest of stakeholder groups and also I think it's quite difficult for everybody within or from the Developing Countries to physically participate as well. So I think we want to think about what are the alternative options rather than just providing fellowships? So some of the things that we may be able to think of is maybe more actively provide a remote hub or maybe develop a leadership programme on GNSO policies, which is something that Asia‑Pacific is already doing on Internet Governance, and then maybe like educate and have coordinator who can represent opinions within a certain region or within the economy, and then those people can come to the ICANN and they can maybe those people can raise and share the issues within their context to the ICANN community.
I think there is a couple of options and I would be interested to have discussion later on this topic because I believe there is some questions about this.
>> MODERATOR: So, now back to Latin America with Olga Cavalli. I think you would give us a different perspective since you participated in GNSO council and also you are a GAC member. So it is an unusual experience and we want to know also about Latin America participation and GNSO policy, please.
>> O. CAVALLI: Thank you, Rafik. Good afternoon everyone and thank you for the invitation. Yes, my perspective is diverse. I am now the Argentina representative in the GAC. I was the Argentina representative before joining the GNSO then I joined the GNSO as a non-com appointee for one term and then I was re‑appointed for another term. So I was there for four years. I can tell you that that was one of the most interesting learning experiences really -- and Chuck is laughing. I learned so much from you and from many other colleagues.
I just remember in this moment one anecdote. I wanted to apply for non-com and I met my friend Tony Harris. And he said, you should apply for CCNSO or ALAC. I said no, I want the GNSO because there is where real things happen in ICANN. This is the big players are there. Big decisions are made there and I want to learn. And he said t is a lot of work. It's extremely complicated. And I said, well, I want to do it. And honestly, it has been a fantastic experience learned experience for me. Language, I do speak English but I can tell you that my first telephone calls where ‑‑ I suffered a little bit because the English was very in between native speakers, so my English now is much better after the GNSO. That was one unexpected outcome.
But I learned so much about the whole ecosystem of our ICANN and about the different companies, about different colleagues that participate and the different level of involvement of countries, regions and the whole ecosystem. And focusing in Latin America, thinking about the participation of Latin America, which is usually not that as much as we expect, I think that Latin America has a lack of more development in parts of the ICANN or the Internet Ecosystem.
For example, we have few or no registries in the region. We have the CCTLDs. We have very few applications from companies from the region for new gTLD's. I think they were a little bit more than 20. Much less than developing regions. We don't have many registrars. I think we have around 10 registrars, which ICANN accredited registrars in the whole Latin American region, which is quite big, and there are big countries. There are several explanations for that, but I won't go into that because it is another topic.
But the fact that the registrars are not around so much as in other regions, makes the interest of the local companies and the local people and professionals involved in the Internet Ecosystem, is not so much into critical Internet resources, issues, which are the main things reviewed in the GNSO and then ICANN.
Also the registrars gather other services that are important as a value chain towards the user. It is usually hosting and security services and other things. Web pages. And so this part of the industry is not so well developed but at the same time it is a business opportunity for companies that want to do that because the region is very big. If you compare how many registered domains are in Latin America, and the CCTLDs, which are the main or the most of the domains maybe more than 10 million. So if you think that only Germany has more than 50 million, or .org has more than 10 million or .com has more than hundreds, it is very a low number of domain registered.
So the whole region is a big opportunity but at the same time it shows that it is part of the ecosystem. It's not so much developed or established. At the same time, those that know me, you know that I have been working hard to bring more people from our region into this process.
Me and other colleagues, we organised since 2009, the South School of Internet Governance. We have trained so far more than 600 professionals, all have received fellowship. All of them. I am pleased to share this room with bill, Olga and helped with our school and this year we organised in the Caribbean for the first time since I was there with us. And it has been a great experience. And it has gone well. Many of the students are now involved in the ecosystem but still we need more representatives. I was really surprised with the number of applications to the noncom this year. Latin America had very, very few of them. So I will stop here. I'm happy to comment later. Thank you.
>> MODERATOR: Thank you, Olga. Just to make a point, maybe we tend to use acronyms familiar to those attending ICANN meetings but if you have any questions, you want clarification, please feel free to ask. We don't want to look like it's an outsiders system. We want to explain to people what is happening and you if you need any clarification, just please ask.
And we are moving now to William Drake. I think he will give us quite different perspective, maybe more from a stakeholder group experience but also maybe as with his experience with many Developing Countries. So Bill?
>> W. DRAKE: Good afternoon, everyone. I was wondering how you try to explain my ‑‑ since you were associating people's perspectives with their localities. I was wondering how you would do it for me. So a Developing Country perspective from Chicago.
Yes. Why not? Exactly.
I have a longstanding interest in development issues and in engaging Developing Countries in Internet Governance processes here at the IGF and ICANN and everywhere else. So that is perfectly fine.
So this workshop is parallel to one we did last year that I organised which was on Civil Society and its role in ICANN's multistakeholder model and looking in particular to experience the GNSO. So now we are looking at the question of Developing Country participation and issues in the same context.
And why do that at an IGF meeting? The answer is precisely, coming to something that Rafik just said when he was worrying about acronyms it's very easy for people from the ICANN planet or universe, to go into fairly ancillary kinds of discussions among themselves. And what is really important is to broaden the discussion by engaging people who don't necessarily participate in the ICANN space and to draw connections between what goes on in ICANN and other Internet Governance environments and to look at similarities, differences, lessons learned and things like that.
I think it is important that ICANN has been working to try to increase its sensitivity to and responsiveness to the concerns of what I would call non‑dominant actors in global Internet Governance. And that is a long and difficult process and not one that necessarily comes immediately for everybody.
By way of comparison, in the Internet Governance Forum, I spent four years organizing manual workshops on the notion of institutionalizing a development Agenda for Internet Governance, or IG4D as I called it. And Olga was on many of those workshops and Rafik as well. And this eventually led to us having main sessions on IG4D after some years, because we kept it on the table saying we need to talk about how you build development as a concern, as a framing kind of set of metrics into evaluations of Internet Governance process system.
In the IGF context, finally people became responsive to that view that this is something worth doing. When I entered ICANN, in contrast, I was served on the GNSO council, Generic Name Supporting Organizations council, as a Civil Society representative from 2009‑2012, and I now chair constituency that participates in the council.
I had a little bit different experience. I'll give you two examples. When two of my first meetings as a GNSO council first in Nairobi in 2009. There was an event that was supposed to encourage Developing Country participation in ICANN. And I was asked to come and make comments on it because of things I was doing. So I show up in the room and I look around and there is 50 usual suspects, like I'm sorry to say like, 45 of them were Caucasian, and there were like two Africans in the room.
And I went over afterwards and I asked one of the gentleman there, I said, why do you think the turnout is so low from Africa? He said if you look at the Agenda, you have this massive Excel file and there is a box that says public participation. And that's this session. So somebody is supposed to skin this and figure out this is where the discussion of Developing Countries outreach is going to happen. Okay?
Now, I think ICANN has gotten better at this over time because we have pushed and raised the issues. Olga organised a whole initiative which we served on councils together, to try to create an outreach task force that would involve the community. Subsequently, under the current President and CEO, a number of staff have been hired to try to do outreach. They built‑up a whole programme with regional Vice Presidents and so on. So there is now a lot more effort, I think, to try to promote that kind of engagement but it took a lot of pounding on the table and raising consciousness and saying this is a priority. The community thinks this is important. There is so much work that needs to be done
We find a lot of these places and we don't really engage the communities there as much as we should. I'm now organizing Civil Society events with support from the staff in different places that we go to try to reach out to local people, but I mean, it's outreach is hard and it's hard for volunteers to do the work. But it is an incremental process and even though at the beginning there was like no sensitivity to the problem, once people raised the concern, my feeling is that the leadership and the people involved in ICANN said yes, you're right. Let's take this onboard and try to do it.
A second example and then I'll stop. Another one of my early meetings in ICANN in Mexico City, this was when they were developing the new gTLD programme to create all the new top‑level domain spaces. And the staff member who is in charge of guiding this effort came in to explain to us what they were doing and the model was that people would put up 185,000 dollars to apply for a new gTLD. And myself and Rafik and another colleague raised our hand and said, that is a bit expensive for people coming from perhaps Developing Countries NGO spaces and things like that who might want to do this. Have you given any thought to trying to have a more differentiated price structure or support or anything like that? They said it's too complex.
But then we found out later on that colleagues from other parts of the ICANN community, the large community, the government Advisory Committee, were also expressing concerns and over time, we were able to put together a working group, which Rafik cochaired, which put forward a model for trying to figure out how to provide support to applicants from Developing Countries. And in the end, we put in place a mechanism. Now it was not well implemented and we didn't get as many applications as one would like and so hopefully we learn from that experience now.
But the point that I'm making is, in both these cases, what started out as a situation where there wasn't sensitivity to the issues because of the kind of folks who were involved in what their experiences were , when we begin to press and say, look, we need to be more aware of the Developing Country issues and participation, people listened and adjusted. So that is the sign of a learning organisation, and I think that that flexibility and approach has to be taken more generally in across Internet Governance institutions and I'll stop there.
>> MODERATOR: Okay. Sounds like we're listening to another workshop. But anyway, so, after those kind of presentations I think we can get questions from the audience if they want to ask or to clarify something. Don't be shy. Who wants to volunteer first? I like volunteering people.
>> (Off mic)
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Thank you very much for volunteering me. Thank you for chairing this session and thank you for pushing the topic over the years, not only here but in ICANN as well. Thank you very much.
My question is related to the policy development process and to which extent do you believe that your efforts and the efforts of others to insert Developing Countries concerns have been successful or heard or have presented practical results? I remember that a few years ago when someone from ICANN was talking about a new gTLD programme in the main session, I raised the question about what practical, concrete things were being made or which efforts were being made to enforce the appliances from registries from Developing Countries or to make sure that actors in Developing Countries were aware in terms of, is there a price differentiation? Is there some kind of incentive or something like that? And if they had measured the impact of new gTLD's on the markets in Developing Countries and to our surprise, there was nothing being planned for that. So I'd like to know what is the assessment you have in policies and inclusion of Developing Countries? For anyone who wants to chime in. I was looking at you both because I know you have ideas about that.
>> MODERATOR: That's not an easy question, I guess. So anyone want to respond?
>> O. CAVALLI: I can tell you my experience about this new gTLD. I promoted, me and other colleagues in Argentina, an event. We did it in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs where I work. It was very nice. New gTLD's in 2009. Then, I have been explaining the concept of what is TLD, what is a new gTLD, about, I don't know, about 10, 20 people, government officials, private sector, academic. I have written papers at the University. I have prepared lectures about new gTLD's at the University, in other universities, in every event I have been participated in. And the concept of a new gTLD is extremely complex to explain and for the audience to capture, or I am not good at explaining it, or maybe both, I don't know.
So, as you said, the applications from Latin America were very few. I don't think it is exactly because of the price of the application, because there are some cities that could have applied for a CCTLD that have the money. I mean, for the city like Buenos Aires or São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro it's not that much money for such a big city, I don't think it's an issue.
The issue is, the purpose. Why should I? What is the need for? And sometimes you can explain it 10 times but it is not enough. What I see now is that people are starting to understand that there are CTDLDs and they exist and we have a say in Spanish, what doesn't kill you, makes you stronger.
What happened with some gTLD's about some regional names like Patagonia or Amazon, has been at least bringing awareness to the whole society about that. And also, it brought many countries, more countries from the region to the back, which has been, for the region, better.
So I will stop here but I would say it is some ‑‑ because I think some parts of this ecosystem are not so strong in Latin America so it is difficult to explain and explain why a new gTLD is needed and why you have to pay so much money. Why most of the information is in English and why all of this process is happening in other regions of the world. I will stop here.
>> W. DRAKE: Measuring impact is always a difficult thing. Now, if your metric is, have a great deal of Developing Country actors come in on the supply side of market to become industries or registrars for gTLD, the answer is not so much. There may be other reasons for that that are just not clearly a function of the programme but also a matter of local market demand. Also many Developing Countries, the country code is really the main focus. There are a lot of people. That is where the action is.
But there is two sides to the story. Encouraging participants in the supply side would be great and if there is any identifiable friction that exists in the system that precludes greater participation because of the way the institutional rules are designed or so on, then we should focus on those and remove those.
But then the other side of the story is on the demand side, the users of gTLD's and everything else. That is a different story. The impact of the Internet and the use of the domain names, impacts across the commercial and non‑commercial world and that is true for the Developing Countries as much as it is for Developing Countries.
And so, it would be useful, I think, to try to really encourage greater engagement as well in the business constituencies that make up the user side of the market, the intellectual property interests, the other business groups, the intellectual ‑‑ Internet service providers, as well as Civil Society, so that impacts upon their operations of these policies, could be built into their activities more effectively. I don't think we have done enough to do that. NCUC, NCSU, we have a lot of Civil Society members from Developing Countries. But they are not always as engaged as some others. You're one of the more engaged ones. So, there is more that could be done there, obviously on both sides of the equation, to try to encourage.
But I mean, if you hold up the development impacts as a met prick to begin to analyze ICANN policies, so that people become more aware of possible linkages between the ways in which we do registry, registrar, accreditation and regulation and so on and possible development impacts and other kinds of issues, that probably would be useful.
The last thing to say is, bear in mind the GNSO is not necessarily the median space in ICANN where these kinds of issues come up. The Governing Advisory Committee has increasing engagement from Developing Countries and Governments and they have raised a number of their issues in many context and that part of the dialogue and the CCNSO where the country code players are also Developing Countries. So, we see Developing Country issues and Developing Country participation slowly growing across the space but it is not a big bang by any stretch of the imagination.
>> MODERATOR: So let's try to get more input.
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: My question relates to, we understand the nature of the problem, unfortunately it is a part of our human dilemma globally. How do we incorporate the Developing Countries into what we are trying to do within our ICANN space? Let's talk about what we are doing today and take its temperature. Is it working? Do we need to tweak it? Is there something about it that is not working at all? By that, I mean the regional strategies by one measure. How are the regional strategies beginning to impact or not this problem? And the second tool is of course, ably represented by here in terms of the global outreach efforts? So that is our current toolkit. Is it working?
>> MODERATOR: So as Bill said, measuring impact is not always easy. But there are efforts in different directions to aim towards improving participation from the Developing Countries. Some efforts relate to regional strategists in the various regions. They just started a couple of years ago in Africa and then followed in Middle East, Latin America and Asia‑Pacific. In the Middle East, we started to sort of witness some impact. We started to see more participation in terms of quantity, new faces coming to ICANN.
Again, I have to be very candid and say those who come to ICANN for the first or second time are not the active participants. They still, you know, attend sessions, try to grasp information, comprehend knowledge and all of this, but it takes time for them to become an active participant and make the impact that we are looking for.
But regional strategies is not the only effort. We have different programs, some of them are entirely led by community members. I'm sorry I'm going to use an acronym and I need help, the CROCK programme? This is the kind of programme that ‑‑ so it's a community programme that allows community members to go and represent ICANN in different meetings and talk about ICANN and what they do and encourage more participation. This programme has been in play for the past year, I think. And this sort of compliments the fellowship programme that brings people to ICANN.
So that is another effort. We have a newly born initiative and I think it was born in Asia recently, called the ICANN next Generation Programme. Again, the main goal is to bring newcomers to ICANN at the Singapore meeting and then the other meetings we have some participants and continue to do that.
On the business side in particular, we also have a business engagement plan, trying to engage with businesses from the different regions. So at each and every meeting since maybe the Beijing meeting, 2013, we have started to see focused and dedicated business engagement sessions like business breakfast or some sort of activity with business and mainly new business again to try to encourage them to become part of the business constituency or the different business related activities at the ICANN. So different initiatives and activities are underway.
Still the question is to try to measure impact. Of course under each and every effort or initiative or strategy, we have a specific KPI that measure some details each to the level of how many of the comments came from the Middle East on a particular policy. We have a process of to measure that as well.
>> I think we talked about participation but I think what is missing is also engagement but how -- the participation in the policy process, not just coming to the meeting and so on. Okutani-san, go ahead.
>> I. OKUTANI: I'm quite engaged with the ICANN Asia‑Pacific hub and how do we reach out to people within our community? And I also do coordination in raising voices while not in Developing Countries but Japan, to the Asia‑Pacific region, so I would like to share some examples based on my experience.
I agree that participation within the ICANN is not easy. If you suddenly join and you're the minority, it is very difficult to form an opinion or be heard effectively. What I feel is very helpful is first, if you're able to have discussions, and consider within your local community in your own language and what is relevant within your local environment, and then have discussions among the other fellow people who have or who are speaking similar situations, and then that will help you to form opinions gradually.
So, I think what is really helped is that the ICANN can facilitate locally outside of the ICANN first. And then, the voices within each of these local communities increase, they can bring the voices back to the ICANN meeting, global ICANN meetings.
And but, I think Bill has raised the issue of it's quite difficult to also encourage participation when we go out to those countries and get people to get interested in the ICANN. But, I think there are existing communities within each country, and they specialized in certain groups. For example, in terms of business, they may have Chamber of Commerce. They may have operational communities where people just talk about operational issues, or they may be have groups of lawyers that discusses about intellectual property right issues.
So I think ICANN can reach to each of these different groups of people, which may be can be equivalent to stakeholder groups within the ICANN and then share the topics relevant to each of these stakeholder groups. So business people, maybe something related to the gTLD applications, business impact. Lawyers, maybe the rights to protection laws or technical commits that is more technically within the ICANN.
And by building these communications in each of these local communities, I think people will start to have more voices and opinions that can be shared within the global ICANN community. So how can we connect those local voices to the global ICANN meeting? That is one thing I'm kind of anxious to discuss here with you today. One of the things maybe remote, one other thing have someone representing the opinions. I don't know. And I think there are possible couple of options that we can maybe consider.
>> MODERATOR: Make a short answer and we have massive in remote participation, Carleton, the gentleman here and Marilia.
>> Thank you, Rafik. Cintra (sp) for the record. I just want to go back to a question. This was the crux of this discussion. It's like a chicken and egg scenario. How do we get more Developing Country representatives participating in this organisation when the fundamental bandwidth and access issues are not solved?
At the end of the day, even if we are offering more participation, we are not all starting at the same level. Some participants are at more of an advantage than others. And getting into the door and getting into the room to actually participate, it requires a certain amount of effort in certain regions and how committed are we to getting there? Thank you.
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: To what degree is ICANN working with the communities that already exist in the developing world that are closely associated with ICANN? So for example, the regional Internet Registry Communities, the iSOC communities and similar communities that through which you may get those individuals from the business community coming in or associating with us, it seems there is an opportunity to work with those and maybe you can comment to what degree you do already.
>> We have a question from.
>> Should I go?
>> We need to get all the questions and then respond.
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: So this is Carlton speaking.
>> MODERATOR: we'll have remote participation and will go back to you.
>> REMOTE MODERATOR: We have a question from CTU secretarial in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The question is, one approach growing and sustaining Developing Countries, participation in IG is to develop local capacity, use of and participation in the Internet and the Internet economy. Can the panel suggests any specific incentives that various stakeholders, Governments, private sector and Civil Society can undertake the activities.
>> C. SAMUELS: Carlton Samuels, for the record. A couple of issues, the participation. Remote participation is possible and for the first time at last, we see ICANN making some moves to get remote participation through remote hubs started. So that is a good thing.
I already spoke to you about, even with remote participation and the hubs, there is still question of accessibility because of infrastructure concerns. So we have bandwidth concerns and I'm sure some of you would have noticed that in places where remote participation occurred before, then some of the remote hubs have gone off line because the bandwidth was just not available for them to interact. We know that is going to happen.
But I wanted to touch a little bit more on where the real thing happens, in the room. The fact is, that Developing Countries are still going to be disadvantaged when being in the room. And that is where all the action really takes place. And you do not underestimate the impact of the corridor engagements as part of the process of meeting consensus and so on. And when you are in a situation where stakeholders, some stakeholders can get in the room and you can see them all the time, they are always in the room, and others are outside of the room, then you begin to understand what is symmetry impact is. And that is something we need to take report on.
With respect to sustainable interest and participation in the Internet Governance Forum. The real long term sustainable interests will come when you have greater participation in domain name system and the market from the global status. That is a problem right now.
I was in Surinam last month and trying to recruit people to come into the ICANN environment as part of user participation. And I will tell you that of the 30‑40 people who came in the room, on two separate days, the most insistent questioning came from people who wanted to know, how do we participate in this market? How do we participate as a registrar and so on? They wanted to be a part of the naming economy.
And I think that is good for all of us. The more of those we can get from the global South involved in the domain economy, the better it is for us for sustainable participation in the Internet Governance Forum. Thank you.
>> MODERATOR: Is Carlton. Yes, please, go ahead.
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Thank you. My name is -- and I'm working for Chinese Economy and Social Sciences. I am also a member. First, my impression is that this panel is about participation in IG. It sounds like more like, ICANN, instead of IG. It seems to me IG is more easier than ICANN. ICANN is more technical‑driven.
Second, you talk a lot about difficulties and how to participate but I think the keyword for participation is motivation. So the question is, why Developing Countries have to participate in this IG process? This is one part. Another part is, why IG or Developed Countries won't participate? If I know as a multistakeholder, if I know there is a steak, if I know it is about my interest, you don't have to teach me. I will learn myself. Right? So, the question is two part. Why you have to do there? Thank you.
>> MODERATOR: Thanks. So the question from Marilia, if you want to speak.
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Just to complete the idea that you were saying before about difficulties to participate, it occurred to me because it was a barrier I faced when I started to participate, I think that ICANN and staff has done a lot to make the environment more internationalized there are more efforts in making participation and translation available although it's not available in every year.
But I feel there is a transference of responsibility from the community to ICANN to pursue inclusion of other actors and that is very clear in terms of language, for instance. It took me a lot of time to feel confident enough to participate in a panel in ICANN because my feeling is that non-English speakers, they lose attention on what you're saying if you say words for 5 or 3 seconds, they will do something else. It's a hard audience to keep. O
nce I was sitting for the GNSO and someone was talking an expression I couldn't understand. And for almost half hour, and then I lost my patience and I went to someone that was a native English speaker and the person said, you know what? When someone is playing baseball, and you're going to do that with the swing? I mean baseball is not a world sport.
So I think that this is very simple but it is an example of how I think sensitivity is lacking in the community they this is an international environment and then you need to perform and talk in different speeds. You need to be more respectful of different people that don't speak English as a first language.
So in comparison, this is different from the U.N. for instance that people are much more aware that environment is international so, it is just a quick point but maybe we, as a community, and ICANN itself, can do something to raise responsibility among the people that participate in the community in ICANN.
>> MODERATOR: Any other questions? Who want to volunteer to respond.
>> O. CAVALLI: Thank you, Marilia for this comment you made about speaking languages. Sometimes when there are a lot of negative speakers speaking English or whichever language can happen with Spanish or Portuguese, we usually try to use local expressions. There is an effort that one has to do to lower the level of this global expressions and some words that could be understood only by some communities. I have expressed that many times when I was in the GNSO, because I used to say, if I speak Spanish for those that have learned Spanish like I speak with my friends, you won't follow me. And that is a problem.
I also have to commend ICANN because many things changed since I started participating in 2006. It's the translation, as you said, not available everywhere but it is a main enabling issue. Also, the fellowship programme, also the efforts were made at the regional level with this regional strategy plans and the thing that I see when I try to capture attention from other countries in the region from the government perspective, or other participants in other SOs or ACs in ICANN is, why should I go? What is the relevance?
I will take the comment, that if you're interested, you find a way to participate. If you have an interest in the industry or there is a business that you want to build or there is a niche you want to investigate at your University, you find the way to participate.
But -- so the challenge would be to demonstrate to these people there is value in participating in the process. That there is value for governments to participate in the process of the GAC or for companies, small or medium enterprises or big companies from Latin America to be part of the business constituency or still society organisations to be part of this. So that's the challenges. Challenge for us that we do participate to show the value, the value they may find in the participation, because it takes time and it is an effort to do.
>> I. OKUTANI: I agree with Olga's point. You need to show value that you should participate. And I think there are so many issues on the table that is being discussed from so many different perspectives in ICANN. So if you share everything to everybody, it just confuses people. So you really have to focus your target.
So for business people, these are the people or the topics that would interest them. For rights protection people, these are the topics that would interest them. So it is important that we identify and pick the topics that interests different stakeholder groups and we can do that locally, engage them locally.
Regarding Matthew's questions about how do we do this? And engage with the existing communities, I don't have the answers to all the questions or. But maybe one of the things the Asia Pacific hub has done is identify what is the organisations within these economies who can do the collaborative kind of role.
So in the case of Japan, they picked JPNIC and some details may be able to say the community as a whole ask and be able to introduce who are the effective organisations on business area or from technical area, for example, or maybe ISO has so many chapters. So maybe contact those chapters and consult them. So who would you talk to if you wanted to talk to business people in this economy? Or if you want to talk to operators within these economies? So make use of communities within those people to consult.
And I also very much like to point that was raised about language and I very much agree. It is a lot are of pressure speaking in front of so many native English speakers. You feel like you have to speak well for people to listen to you. And then when I attend some of the sessions that focuses on regional development, for example the regional participation from Asia‑Pacific, most of the people who are attending the sessions are Asians and I see quite a lot of people who don't really speak in the main sessions where native English speakers speak but when it is all Asians, we become active.
So I think that is one of the signs that people might, if there are environments that encourages people speak out more comfortably, maybe it is easier for people to raise voices within the ICANN meetings.
>> E. KENYANITO: So just to echo to what they are saying and make it short, yes, about the initiatives, that is a really commendable ‑‑ so the Civil Society more engagement. Next you find one studied in Asia but now it was take then and there were complications for the American meetings. So you find that not just that but not just the ICANN ‑‑ they are going to Morocco. These plans include Developing Countries and also new constituencies such as young people. And then Civil Society. It is one that at London, there was a meeting to encourage Civil Society which bill Drake and the stakeholder group was very instrumental. So you find that these initiatives going there and as we pointed out, it takes time to create a change but it is the momentum is building up. So thank you.
>> MODERATOR: (Low Audio)
I think we need move to wrap up this session.
>> Thank you. I just want to go back to the comment that was made by the Remote Moderator previously. Most of it was about on the transcripts. So nobody on the panel got the opportunity to ascertain what was being said or asked or responded back. And this is one simple but telling example of how remote participation does not work effectively in some areas. There was also the comment made of the topic area not really focusing on a bit too much on ICANN.
Right now ICANN is in a strategic position to make a change and it is really to help bridge this gap. It is really opening up the gTLD space to increase the new ‑‑ sorry, increase Developing Country representation and support. And it is a position to make strategic decisions that would create more equity within this space. I don't think it is a matter of lack of interest. I'm an attorney at law and I can tell you that being here on this panel, it is nowhere near to my billable rates but it is a sacrifice I make and many of my colleagues will not do the same. Thank you.
>> Hello. We have a couple of questions from remote.
The question is, when ICANN plans to reach people from Developing Countries, what strategy they make participation of stakeholder? Government, private and Civil Society? And the second one, how each of multistakeholder representation are selected. Was there specific process for each stakeholder.
>> MODERATOR: So we have a few minutes left and I think it is time we wrapup this session. And to go to more actionable accommodations. So what can be done to assure the participation of the Developing Countries is again talking about the policies. So I will ask each panelist what you think, what kind of recommendations. Something we can implement and share with us. Starting with you.
>> O. CAVALLI: I think it should be from both sides from ICANN and from people ‑‑ from ICANN I think it could be reviewed at the regional strategies. Go to the groups of interest. I think it somebody made a very good point, for example, go to the lawyers council or to the small or medium enterprises association.
For example, in Argentina, the Internet association is already participating actively in GNSO. So that is an example. And they can come and share. Some lawyers I know that follow intellectual property issues and are involved, not that much, but maybe they can go to their association or their council and explain, which is the value, and maybe they can prepare a small group and participate sometimes one and sometimes the other. The time issue is relevant, because going to the meetings, sometimes for some of us is part of our work. But for some others, it is not. And it takes a lot or many days in a week. So that may be challenging.
If you are in an association and have two or three people related with say for example, intellectual property issues or business related issues, maybe they can go sometimes one or sometimes other. And from the user perspective or the end participant, maybe ask that we know which is the value and the participation. We can share to others and try to motivate them. Thank you.
>> I. OKUTANI: So I think my suggestion would be something along the lines that Olga suggested. So, first, develop the communities or raise awareness within the local economies first. And then I think once we have more awareness and active people, then I think those communities can maybe have representatives, people who would be able to speak on their behalf, per different topics. So, I think I don't have much more else to add from Olga's point.
>> E. KENYANITO: I just say support the initiatives. Ongoing initiatives, such as the summer schools as she pointed out, with Latin America and Africa, and when such initiatives are not going on, to encourage actors to come up with that and then Internet Governance community, ICANN, can collaborate. One in collaboration with other people. We don't have to take on the whole world's problems. Like we need to work with others.
And then something else that was important that I think I would touch on here, is on even if the fellowship programme, like I followed the fellows who was selected for the meeting are those issues (?) that is something that the committee can help. For example, like participation in events and rights for embassy themselves -- So I think the community can do. They can support them? I'd say it is commendable and you can show collaboration. Thank you.
>> Thank you. I believe that every Internet Governance wants to support country engagement and they want to assess why the DNS industry has not reached these areas. Specific to ICANN, I think it needs to take a further advantage in leveraging and volunteers through the networks, knowledge and reputation in order to promote its mission and core values and truly bring the industry and Internet to the developing world. Thank you.
>> B. ESMAT: So just before getting to my closing remarks, I wanted to add the question of the remote participant and if I got it correctly, it was about participation in ICANN and different constituencies from Governments and private sector and so forth.
So, there are a number of avenues or sort of programmes for supporting participation from the Developing Countries. There is the general ICANN fellowship programme that follows the criteria of the world bank in selecting participants from developing and least‑developed economies, giving also preference to participants coming from nonprofit organisations like government society academia and so forth.
Details about this programme are available on the ICANN website. And then within each constituency like the government Advisory Committee, like the constituency would be supporting organisations for CCTLD and each one has its own programme to support participation for Developing Countries. So that is to answer the question quickly.
Now, back to you know, what to be done to deal with the issue of participation from the Developing Countries, I guess there are, at some activities already underway. Again, one of the recommendation that is came out of some of the regional strategies was to establish what we call DNS forums.
These are forums for discussions around DNS issues. They are being count the in the region. We started with Africa and then again, we had DNS4 in the middle east and Latin America and other parts of the world. And these forums, particularly sort of tar gets.
Businesses whether large or small, targets existing and potential registries and registrars to discuss issues related to DNS and more to the region that the forum is having within. In addition to that, I just want to note that in relation to GNSO, that again, coming from the Middle East, I noticed that the non‑commercial constituencies within GNSO have opened the window of opportunity for participation from the Developing Countries.
Before that, we used to have constituencies like registry, registrars, business, intellectual property, and in all these constituency, you hardly find participation from Developing Countries. Whereas, in non‑commercial constituencies and stakeholder groups, we noticed and talking about the Middle East I'm sure and other regions as well, more participation coming from folks who belong to Civil Society. Or academia. Or even that they might belong to some sort of small business or project and then they also manage to get into the process. So I think that was a positive thing. And we, as Regional Representatives for ICANN, we need to encourage that. We need to strengthen our outreach to the noncommercial stakeholder groups and encourage them to participate in these processes. Thanks.
>> W. DRAKE: Did you want me to say anything?
>> Just wondering. Just to build on the last point, indeed what you notice is correct. And the consistency which I chair, has 350 something members, 90 something organisations and 200 when whatever their difference is, individuals. And two‑thirds of them come from outside of the United States. And many of them are from Developing Countries.
The problem is, there is a difference between signing up as a member on a mailing list and saying you're part of the group and voting in the election for representatives and the GNS council or chaired positions and things like that, and actually really deeply engaging. And, what we need, I think, we spent a lot of time talking about outreach to potential new members. We have to find more mechanisms for in reach to existing members to make the folks that are already interested enough to come under the door but not sure how much they want to commit to engage, to make it more palatable and interesting.
One of the real problems is, in my experience, unless you actually really ever come to a meeting, and are part of the buzz and see the community working together and all those kinds of things, it's a very abstract thing. So if you're sitting off in some country and trying to follow remotely, it doesn't give you the same sense of commitment and engagement and so on.
So certainly one of the things why can do is try to increase the assistance that we provide to be able to bring people in and ICANN has a number of mechanisms for this. More can be done to do that. More generally, you know, the question was asked, you know, by my colleague is the panel about Developing Country participation in IG or ICANN?
You know, I think the point is, it's important for us to move from broad generalizations and abstractions to concrete cases. We often talk about Internet Governance in very sweeping ways and when we do that, the discussion becomes very repetitious. Developing Country participation is important. Everybody cares about it. How can we encourage it? Yes, we need more. But, you know, having that kind of conversation over and over is not so interesting.
When I think is more interesting and what we wanted to do here is to look at it through the lense of a concrete experience. Okay? ICANN provides one particular setting, the GNS provides a more specific setting within it. And there are particular challenges in engaging Developing Countries and participants in the GNSO and bringing Developing Country concerns into the GNSO as a framework or as a consideration where you would at least like to check the box and say, has the policy we tried to develop on this issue, whether it is special protections for Intergovernmental Organizations, or any number of other strange very specific GNSO policies we have addressed in recent years. Is there a development dimension in identifiable development dimension? If so, how have we addressed that?
So you need to at least ask that question. That is something I think we could do in part by having staff to help to the community participate. And by having it just be another element in the discourse in the list of things that we look at when we assess policies. So, my point would be, participation is always good to talk about, and there are many things we can do to advance participation further and improve the regional strategies and so on.
I think we values to think about the issues and how they connect with the concerns of people in Developing Countries because often we see them as disjointed. And that is a problem. I'll stop there. Thank you.
>> MODERATOR: We are at the end of this session. Thank you to the panelists for the insight that you had today. And thank you for the audience for the questions and bearing with us. Hopefully we can follow‑up with there to get some recommendations and hopefully we can do more. Thanks.