Youth involvement in Internet Governance
04 September 2014 - A Workshop on in Istanbul,Turkey
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The following is the output of the real‑time captioning taken during the IGF 2014 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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>> BIANCA HO: Welcome to workshop 173. Please be seated and we will start in a few minutes to get the remote participants ready. Let's get started. Welcome to workshop 173. I hope you are in the right room so you will be able to listen to youth as well as the policy makers to give perspective on youth engagement.
Let me introduce myself. My name is Bianca Ho, mission ambassador. I am working on foundation to create children friendly Internet. So let me give you a brief background of the workshop and we can move onto the format and move onto the meat of today, which is the discussion. This is actually a collective YCIG effort. For those who don't know, Youth Coalition of Internet Governance. We came up with this workshop, and then submitted it and IGF actually accepted it and also put us in the Main Hall, so pressure on me, but I think this is a great thing to put us in Main Hall and also get the translators to translate in case there are people with language barriers.
So the other thing about this workshop is actually we hosted a workshop two years ago, Workshop 119 Defining Successful Factors of Different Models for Youth Participation in Internet Governance. So that year we talked about effectiveness, the format, and how to successfully engage youth in the Internet. However, I think it's time to move forward. So we are thinking of, we have already done a lot of capacity building. As you see there are a lot of youth right here.
What we want to see is right now we are kind of swimming in a swimming pool. How do we ‑‑ they are learning to swim in the swimming pool. How do we bridge the gap to let them swim in the ocean? What we are trying to find out this time is if Government can kind of build that path or make a river for them to swim from the swimming pool to the ocean. The format of today's discussion would be the policy makers, namely we have representatives from IGF, ICANN, we also have Government representatives to speak about how they engage youth on the Internet policy discussion. Secondly, we also have youth who are actually in those programmes to comment on how this can be moved forward.
Number three, we will go into open discussion which means mapping the gap as well as filling in the gap which I think is very, very crucial for what is happening today to find actionable items that policy makers or the youth themselves can bring this forward to let them swim in the ocean. So our key question would be how to enable true participation for youth in Internet Governance policy making dialogue.
Before we start, we have two hashtags of the youth right here. You are also more than welcome to think of any potential hashtag that would potentially move this dialogue onwards. Hashtag next step, NEXTEP. Another one is hashtag, this is a funny one, MINDTHEGAP. So if you have Tweets, anything, please use this hashtag, MINDTHEGAP or NEXTEP to bring it forward and everyone can follow our discussion. Lastly, a short really important reminder, please keep your speeches short and sweet so we only have four minutes for both the policy makers and the youth to speak about their perspective. Then we will move onto the open discussion.
As we all know, lack of attention, Twitter is 140 words are actually pretty helpful. So let's get started. So you have the policy making bodies to speak about their thoughts on engaging youth on the Internet. May I have Nazrul Khan from the government of Bangladesh speak first.
>> NAZRUL ISLAM KHAN: My name is Nazrul Islam Khan from the Government of Bangladesh. To engage the young people in our perspective, first we need access to, access in this field, it means literacy as well as affordability. I'm not going to this area because this area is, we are addressing in a different way. Another area is also connectivity. What we did in our country, first, we tried to increase the literacy, so we developed some 4500 information centre dotted throughout the country.
It is a private public partnership sort of thing. They are importing literacy to the local people, young people as well. After that they need to buy something, it should be affordable so they can connect with the Internet. They need liquid money.
So we trained them with this centre to become, fill in these sort of things so they can get on. First is literacy, second is sort of the things, and thirdly, we engaged them to become small entrepreneurs so they can bring other people into this literacy area. They can read to other people, at the same time they can learn something, the other people can learn something. So now it become almost 500,000 freelance like things.
Now, I think individual engaging in social media, sometimes it is very difficult too hard to the Government. So we encourage them from our area that you should form small, small bodies, like sort of trade what is like a freelance association, Internet association, this sort of thing. So now they found the organisation, and they not only engaging in social media, but also they form bodies. So what happens, they can talk to Government in a structured way. They can inform us their points very easily.
So in this I can mention that with respect the space was in Bangladesh about 27,000. Now, it reduced to become 3,000 because they are in these areas. They are negotiating. So my point is that after this literacy or forming the body formation association promotion is very important to dialogue with the Government to let Government hear. This is very important. I think in this area the different countries like us, the Developing Countries, these bodies can interact with each other and learn from each other like we are learning and they can interact with their Government, even they advise their Government advocacy could be done to improve these areas.
So the main point is association formation and negotiating with Government in a structured way. The other thing is that to do that, you need a critical mass of people, literate people, competent literate people. So when the part of Government, on the part of even NGOs, they can do it. In our country, the strong NGOs are there. We are now motivating or trying to convince our NGOs so that they can take up these things.
When the number is increasing, another issue is arising. Those who are reiterating themselves, they cannot afford a laptop or notebook so we are engaging, asking the NGOs so they can give micro loan sort of things, so it is taking momentum. So one side is financial, another side is training and the third side is formation of a body or an association. Thank you very much.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. It was really good to have a Developing Country perspective because I believe a lot of us on the table are actually from developed countries, but nonetheless I think it's important that he pointed out a point that you need a structure to make it happen. So I see a lot of Developed Countries already have Civil Societies that he mentioned as the freelance community that they are building and gradually gaining that critical mass that Government will actually speak to them.
So next we would have Subi Chaturvedi from the Multi‑stakeholder Advisory Group in IGF. We will listen to how she engages the youth in IGF.
>> SUBI CHATURVEDI: Thank you so much for having me on this panel. My name is Subi Chaturvedi. I am from India. I teach at the University of Delhi at a women's college called the Lady Shri College for Women, and I run a foundation called Media for Changes, working and learning from youth and members of the Internet Governance and the Internet community. We look at doing capacity building. We look at how is it that we can bring young people and Internet end users on the table.
Today I was invited to be on this session in my capacity as a MAG member. The MAG is, and we are at the IGF and you hear a lot of acronyms and everyone speaks in these acronyms. The MAG is a Multi‑stakeholder Advisory Group which arises and sets out the IGF programme. And this includes stakeholders from across different communities, and groups which would be private sector, technical community, Governments, media, academia, and the idea has always been to make sure that this becomes a Forum for discussion, dialogue, debate, and also of listening to each other, of responding to calls for issues which need to be addressed.
So we have done a lot of main workshops, we have done a lot of sessions. There are about 300 people here, but let me put on record how delighted and thrilled I am to be speaking on this session because this is my community. The youth who are the end users need to be present in the room. So what is it that we can do? When I saw this proposal, we were thrilled at the MAG to see how is it that we can get more people to come in and participate? So putting my appreciation on the record for Net Mission Ambassadors who we have just concluded the Asia‑Pacific IGF and a lot of you were in India. So in terms of what we are doing, I think we are not doing enough to get more people here.
It is very important to have youth on the table. We do have conversations when we address issues such as child safety and it's always about how is it that we can get families and young people involved in keeping them safe. Now, these are people who are online. You're digital natives, you understand the Internet much better than a lot of traditional socialization institutions like families, like schools. So we are looking at creating peer to peer communities.
One of the ways has always been to encourage more workshop proposals from young people, from stakeholders which will bring in young people, and the MAG looks at it with positive discrimination because we understand that unless you are speaking on a session or unless on a panel, it's very difficult to get permissions to get travel, to get funding. So one of the issues has been fellowships. How is it that we can remove that barrier? I'm very happy to announce that I ISOC, the Internet Society, has initiated a new vehicle which will allow small and medium contributions. It's called the IGF Support Association. And one of the key purposes of this initiative is to make sure that we can get funding for the sustainability of the IGF, support the IGF Secretariat but also to grant fellowships to young people who can then come and participate and be here physically.
There is remote participation, but for a lot of us, remote participation is like watching TV. Unless you are in the room, unless you are meeting people from different countries, different cultures, you are listening to their issues, it's not nearly the same thing. So one of them is the physical barrier, and second more importantly the IGF is in its ninth year. This is the ninth edition. Next year we move to Brazil for the tenth edition.
Why is it we should come here? Why is it we should be in the room? When you have topics that make sense for the youth, anonymity, questions of freedom of speech and expression, when they say something, are they going to be safe? Will they be protected? How is it that the Internet can have more meaning and value for them to engage, collaborate, and build? That is when it begins to make sense.
So one of our conscious efforts at the MAG has also been to have themes that make a lot of sense to the wider community, that are more inclusive, so we are looking at connecting continents and the metaphor that we are using this year is also about building bridges, bridges that connect and bring in all stakeholders together.
So my request, and I'm just wrapping up, would be to make sure you look at the IGF website. This year we have set out a call for five best practice Forums so wherever you are even when you go back from here, you can contribute to these best practice foras looking at best practices, what is it that makes sense to you when they are talking about keeping you safe online. And thank you again for joining us here. It's a great honor. Thank you.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you, again, Subi. I think the effort is seen and we are trying to participate more as youth, but maybe we face more of the challenges that they face so I think that could be addressed on the next step. Then we will move onto Nora, VP of development and public responsibility programmes of ICANN. So that's also another Internet policy making body. Maybe while we are working on technical glitches ‑‑ okay, it's working now.
>> REMOTE MODERATOR: Actually there are not technical problems, but I started talking to see if she has any technical problems on her end, but she didn't respond. Her voice is enabled right now, but we are not receiving any audio from her.
>> BIANCA HO: In the meanwhile, let's wait for her response. We will move to Julia Reda, she is a member of the European Parliament. She is also in the Young Pirates so I think she is a very nice gap between the Government, the policy makers as well as the youth representatives.
>> JULIA REDA: Yes, thanks a lot for having me on this panel. I think it's great that the IGF is reserving such a panel for youth issues in particular, but I would also like to point out that when we look around, youth are on the table at the IGF this time and I think this is great, but frankly, the number of people in powerful positions who are actually willing to listen to our opinions and our concerns about Internet Governance is still sadly lacking. I would like to encourage all of the young people who are already participating in the IGF to really not wait for people in powerful positions and for the Governments to include you because what does it mean to give power to somebody else? It means that you have to give up some of the power that you have yourself.
And usually when there is a group that is under represented in politics, for example, because we can't vote up to a certain age, it's that group that is lacking certain rights, that has to fight for those rights. And I think one way of doing that is to actively go into fora such as the IGF and to push for more issues and more inclusion of youth, but at the same time, we also have to recognize that simply because we are young that doesn't say much about our actual political opinions.
Just because we are young doesn't say that we have this or that position on how the Internet should be in the future. So I think if we really want to involve youth in the Internet Governance process and get our opinions heard, it's not enough to have a youth panel where we are talking about youth issues amongst mostly youth, but rather when I look around, we have somebody who has founded a software company, we have somebody like myself who is an elected representative, we have in the audience young activists who are facing oppression from their own Governments including the host country.
We have all kinds of people who have very much to say about the multitude of issues that are being discussed at this Forum. And I would like to call to the organisers of the IGF and also to the other workshop organizers to put young people on these policy panels, put young people on the net neutrality panels, on the freedom of expression panels, on issues of the future of the Internet because we are the ones who are going to have to deal with the consequences of the decisions that are being made about the Internet right now. And I think it is not enough for us to simply wait and be thankful for the fora that we are being given, but we should actively fight for being heard in more fora and for having an actual influence on the decisions that are being made. Thank you.
>> BIANCA HO: This is a very well made point and I do agree that youth panelists should actually sit in on the actual issues but not only on youth again, though I think youth is very important, and it is an issue that needs to be raised. So that's why we are here. Next year I really hope we can move forward to issue discussion. So I think Nora is on the line now.
>> NORA ABUSITTA: Yes, hello.
>> BIANCA HO: Yes, we can hear you.
>> NORA ABUSITTA: Thank you for having me today. I couldn't be there in person. (Inaudible) This was a great opportunity. We have a new and special perspective on the ways we do things.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. So we share a mission with ICANN which is a partnership programme that they do with DOT.Asia and what they do is they will have a separate Forum for youth to participate in ICANN and also mentorship programmes, so this would be a potential way to engage youth, but we will let the youth to comment on whether they think that is sufficient. So now we would move onto the youth representatives to hear about their thoughts on participating in the IGF. So we start with NetY Ambassadors.
>> AGNES FONG: I'm Agnes and I'm one of the NetY Ambassadors from Hong Kong. Now speakers mentioned policies that can help to youth in Internet Governance which is good, but I think these may not be enough. People say that teenagers in Hong Kong know only how to use the Internet, but they never concern about Internet Governance. I have to say this is true, but nothing is 100% guaranteed.
So there must be someone who is interested in Internet Governance like us, but the point is even the ones who are interested, they don't participate in this. In my opinion, this is mainly because they feel like their voices are not respected. No one listens to them as our adults always say things like teens are not experienced enough.
So in this situation, how can Internet Governance be widely promoted among the youth? And we haven't reached the stage of communicating with the Government and something important that touches the service like advertising or education are not enough. Youth involved in Internet Governance by means of getting deeply into the topic, and a competition is a good way as a starting point, I think.
Like the programme that I joined, participants are required to write an essay on any Internet related issues, such that they can know more about how is the Internet working or what the Internet is actually about. And as a competition, teenagers will pay more time and be more interested in such topics than having tutorial sessions or reading leaflets such that teenagers are engaged more as the competition goes on.
I think this is the first step of the whole thing, effectively raise teenagers' concern as well as interest in Internet Governance.
>> ENOCH CHENG: I am also a NetY Ambassador from Hong Kong. So I think particularly in the case of Hong Kong, the Government has actually done something to raise the youth awareness on Internet Governance. For example, they may have leaflets and talks in schools. And non‑government organisations also do these lectures to educate school students, but the problem is that is only for the short run. There is no long‑run programme that is, that can teach in a large number of youth to raise their awareness. So I think this is a part of the problem.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you so much. So they mainly talked about there is no direct communication to speak with the Government, and I think a lack of a long‑run type of programme to engage issues on Internet Governance. So we will also move on to Vincent Ho, they are representatives from Net Mission Ambassador to share their experiences.
>> VINCENT HO: I'm from the Mission Ambassador. Thank you for bringing points about practical solutions to current spaces, but here I would like to address a personal experience which is my story about how I became so passionate in Internet issues and how that can be maybe a way to deal with the challenges we are facing.
Starting from nothing, we have done a lot of stuff. We initiated a lot of programmes, like we next year at ICANN and we try to have a meeting and just youth facilitate them in order to get the discussions well done. After that we tried to hold YIGF to have some youth discussions on Internet Governance issues, and we are trying to do a lot of things and along the way we do see a lot of people want to cooperate with us, and we do feel that our passion has actually paid off.
We have our capacity part, but after that, we see the problem here is even with our capacity built, we see that our voices are not always getting really to the level of the policy making. I appreciate the multi‑stakeholder approach which gave us a lot of chance in order to voice the message we want delivered as a youth.
But we also want supports from the others, we also want the supports from the other multi‑stakeholder groups which if others, if it can really happen, then we think that our voice can really get to the policy making level. And that's the situation of my personal story.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you so much, Vincent. So moving from Asia to Europe, we will have Silke Sorensen from Save the Children Denmark to speak about her thoughts.
>> SILKE SORENSEN: I am Silke Sorensen from Denmark, and I think that the youth should be more participating in things like this, IGF. Young kids with different cultures, kids from Africa and more kids from Asia and kids with different social backgrounds because I think the most of the youth who is here has not experienced so much in the Internet and there is much more people and youth, young people who have experienced some not nice things on the Internet, and it would be great to hear their opinion in things like this.
And I think that it could be better if you could make some youth panels where the language isn't so hard to understand. Because I can't follow a written to some panels, and they are just talking. And why do we need to get listened to? I think that we need to get our opinion out to the world because we are the next generation. We need to tell you adults what we see in our age because we know some different things than you do. So, yes.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. Silke Sorensen has stressed on the importance of the youth panel to use easier languages. She also had a good point on the fact that children see or youth see Internet Governance in a different way, that's why we have to be heard. Okay. So next we move to Grace and Nina, youth representatives from Unsafe Network.
>> NINA DEVANI: My name is Nina and I'm here as grace Ambassador for Unsafe. The IGF provides a really good opportunity for us to really discuss our views with adults and other youths from around the world, but I think that one thing that could be improved is that the IGF is a project, so we can't really set official statement to policy makers. So really getting the IGF to become an organisation, so what's discussed here can actually go forward to the policy makers in order to actually make an impact. Because a lot of the points discussed here at the IGF are really, really good, and would provide excellent ways to actually make a difference and improve things.
And also I think it's about raising awareness to other youths because we are here and we have got the opportunity to do this and we are really lucky for that, but I think for other youths, you know, back in our home countries to be made aware of this maybe through school, for school to promote this so that they can actually watch on the live webcast and actually participate with their ideas because we bring our ideas, and what they have told us, but our view changes throughout the event, so if they are watching, their view might change as well so everyone can really bring their views and then pass onto policy makers.
>> GRACE KELLY: My name is Grace Kelly and I'm a youth Ambassador with N safe. Before I was asked to attend the IGF with N Safe I had never heard of it and I have been working and helping in this area for three years now. I think the reason that there is not more youth interest in it is because they don't know this event exists. I have seen a lot of Tweets over the last few days asking why aren't there any youth remote participants? I think that's simply because anyone who wasn't asked to personally come here don't even know that this is going on. I have been on Facebook and Twitter and new sites all week and I have yet to come across an advertisement or an article about it, so I think that would be a good idea to have more, I know we are always talking about awareness around the Internet, but we need more awareness around this event so a wider variety of people, especially young people know about it.
And as well as that, if a wider variety of young people are going to get involved, that might get more teachers, more parents actually interested in becoming involved in creating a better Internet and not just waiting for them to be told and even something like a Twitter instead of, like instead of the screen up over there might be able to display Tweets and opinions from people as they are sitting at home and reading transcripts as they are discussed here.
And also it was Nina and I that were discussing what actually comes out of this Forum. And for us as youths, we seem to be handing everything over to our organizers, and that's great. They are more than capable of bringing it further, but it's almost kind of sad for us because we don't know where any of the ideas or any of the work we have done this week is going and we can't follow the progress. Like I'm nearly too old to be considered a youth for my national panel. So I definitely can't come next year.
I won't be involved in it in that same way. So I think if there was more of an opportunity for us to release almost an official report or even an official one page report after every workshop and compile those for the IGF, and that way even, again, that would work for people who aren't in every workshop to get an idea.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you, Grace and Nina. They talked about great points about having an official statement put forward on what youth have discussed. The other thing is also awareness not only among youth, but also among teachers and parents. So that's actually a very good motivator for other people to join, to encourage youth to join the IGF. Okay, so moving onto Farzaneh Badii she is academia and from the Persian youth IGF.
>> FARZANEH BADII: Thank you. I just wanted to say, well, Persian Youth IGF was a project that we wanted to start and it has not taken off yet. Just a couple of things about when we say that youth should be listened to, who do you mean? Who should listen to youth? The decision makers? Who are the decision makers? Do we actually mean that we want national policy makers that actually have the enforcement power to listen to you and consider your policy suggestions or do we mean that internationally we need leaders to listen to us and consider our comments?
And from the perspective of youth in the Persian speaking region, I would say that when, when a project about youth and involvement in Internet Governance wants to start, it is very important to look at what should, who should be, like, what should be actually the structure? Should there be a structure? Should it be dependent on another initiative or should it be like stand alone initiative, and it is, these are very important because it actually may lead to the failure of the project.
And the other point that I wanted to make is when we say involvement in Internet Governance, which Forum do we mean? Which venues do we mean by youth involvement? Internet Governance? Do we mean the Internet like generally the institutions that are in charge of policy making and technical aspects of the Internet, and the other point that I wanted to make is that actually remote participation is very important and very effective, sometimes even more effective than physical participation because sometimes people from some regions do not have, it's not the matter of even finance. It's the matter of some reservation to actually physically participate in some venues.
So it is important to bring their views in, and the last point that I wanted to make is that the platforms that should be used for youth involvement in Internet Governance should be based on the regional needs, and what I see most of the time in different regions is that we use the same platform that we use for the European youth, and, yes. So that's actually, so with the European or more developed ones, we use their ideas for our region, which is like developing.
So I don't think that would actually fit. And we need to find the requirement first and the need of the youth, and then come up with a platform. Thank you very much.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. I think that's a great point that we can bring up in the open discussion. So you mainly covered what is the structure, and who do you want to be heard from, and I think those are great things to be covered in the open discussion. So we have Lorena from the German Youth IGF.
>> LORENA JAUME-PALASI: Hi. Thank you very much. I want to say plus one to what Farzaneh said. From the perspective of someone that is doing a very specific IGF, but also doing a regional IGF, I'm also helping with youth participation. I have been helping with youth participation this year in EuroDIG. What I see from those experiences are that culture matters, and that you cannot apply the same solution to different contexts or different cultural constraints and situations.
So I think that sharing best practices is a good idea, but it also needs to take a look within your own country, within your own expectations towards what you expect about politics in general, about policy in general, about what are your own cultural expectations about the Internet, about how participation looks like in your country independently of anything that has to do with digital matters, whether you like these sort of constraints or not, that it doesn't mean that you have to stick to them, but you should consider them when you are trying to create a youth IGF.
So once you have all of these things in mind, it usually works much, in a much more organic way. What the common denominator of many IGFs is is that they are very different. Why? Because they have been growing organically. And they are in its own perspective a very own project that you cannot compare or put another place. Most people have said many other points that I endorse to, so I will try to keep it short. Perhaps I will add one additional point in terms of capacity building. We have been talking about capacity building in terms of funding, we have been talking about capacity building in terms of content, getting more knowledge about certain issues, and I think that there are two other factors which are important too.
And one of those factors was mentioned in the session ago, in the youth session about digital citizenship. It was one of you guys that said, well, we need to understand the language they are talking about. I even think someone said it here. You said this. Yes, that was very good point. Internet Governance, the name itself is very cryptical. We talk about policy issues and we talk about digital issues. They are both codes. So we need to translate the code not only for the youth but for everyone.
So this is the way we are going to get more participation. And on the last, the last point that I also wanted to say, we need capacity building in terms of helping youth or helping people to be able to articulate themselves, to have rhetorical strategies, to have strategies as to how to appear in public, how to talk on a panel, how to do networking and all of this stuff. And I think this is also a point that should be addressed. Thank you very much.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you, Lorena. She shared how one should take their own contacts and think about Internet Governance, the other two interesting points on capacity building, one on language making it easier. The other is also formulating a strategy. Finally, we come to our last youth panelist, Deniz from ACCESS.
>> DENIZ AYVDIN: Thank you, Bianca. First, I would like to thank the organizers of this panel because it's really nice to have young faces fora change. And I would like to again talk about the importance of awareness when it comes to Internet Governance issues because I am here representing ACCESS as a policy fellow because I am a university student studying in the U.S., but actually this Conference takes place in Istanbul, Turkey where there are around 50 universities in the city, and we also know that Turkey is one of two countries with a really, really high ratio of young people. I think it's around 17%.
So I would have expected to see more young faces here because it's such an important issue for young people, Internet and the future of Internet Governance should matter to young people from different backgrounds. When you think about it, if you go to university, if there is enough awareness that is secured at a university level, Internet Governance can be made more relevant to really diverse group of students.
For example, it's not just political scientists or computer science students who should be involved and would like to be involved. It's also the artist who can have a say on freedom of expression or copyright issues or it is also the M.B.A. student who will care about, care about innovation aspect of Internet Governance, or it is also just all of the youth because this is actually about the future and because the multi‑stakeholder process is actually in place, and it is a reality, it is one of the few areas where young people can have a voice.
So I definitely think that Governments and also Civil Society at large should work on awareness more, and make sure that people are aware of this opportunity that already exists.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you so much, Deniz. So I think we are done with both the Government as well as the youth speaking. I think the next part will be the interesting part which will be the open discussion. I have kind of categorized all of the ideas into few parts, and I think we should focus more on two things. So, okay, I will categorize them into pre-meeting, which includes capacity building. The second would be awareness that Deniz just mentioned, and then the second part would be at the Conference. So what should the youth do at the Conference? And third part would be an outcome. That means, for example, having an official recommendation, getting a slot for youth to speak, or even having a youth panel with easier language.
So maybe let's start at the Conference. Because I think capacity building, it is very important, but, again, in the last workshop we have already kind of covered capacity building and it is done by a lot of Civil Societies. Maybe we would really want to understand how youth can equally participate in the panels. Does anyone have any suggestions? A hand in the back.
Can anyone give him a mic, please?
>> AUDIENCE: My name is Sho, I'm representing half of me is youth and the other half of me is adult. I am attending this event as an ISOC Ambassador. I would like to make a few comments, and I think my comment is more of a challenge to put the youth and the adults. I look at the room right now. It looks like it's indeed a youth Forum because you could at least, you could count the number of adults compared to the number in the meetings that we have. I think even though it's a youth Forum, those that are supposed to be here should be, should contain a mix of it, that is we should have as many adults as possible because that is how we fill abilities. It's not popular to have a youth Forum in a company like this and yet it's just going to be youths in here.
Youths are trying to recognize or trying to make a point that when the adults leave, when they make decisions, they are the ones that will be there to pack up the shit. So why not just give them the opportunity to be part of the history right now, instead of actually writing the histories for them. I think it's important that the adults, and especially the mothers, maybe I should talk to the women, women who are adults, please talk to your colleagues who are male. Let them try to engage the youth. Youth are usually in Forums like this, they feel secluded. Most of them don't want to come to the mic. It would be difficult for them. Please meet them outside. Talk to them one on one. That is how we build capacity.
It is not going to be automatic, but it is what we engaged in. We can tell what they have in mind and there are lots of ideas that they have. I want to encourage this Forum to think of ways by which you can receive comments from youth in a way that they won't feel ashamed, they won't feel secluded, and they will actually feel involved. Thank you.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you for your comments. That's a really good point. In getting them one on one because I think a lot of them are shy to speak on the table. Does anyone have any, okay, Subi?
>> SUBI CHATURVEDI: Thank you. I will be brief. My name is Subi Chaturvedi and just responding to the calls, thank you for having me here. You have truly inspired me. As a result of the intervention, I have just written to the MAG and the organizers of the main sessions to make sure that there is participation on these main panels and not just workshops. I take your point on board. It's a fantastic point that we have to give up space to make space for you because you have a perspective that is uniquely your own.
As far as what is it that we can do to make sure that we are solving these problems, access of availability and one quick suggestion, some of us actually, main session organizers went looking for panelists from your community. We would love to have some of you come back next year when we go to Brazil. So if you could give us a resource pool of some of these speakers so that we as the MAG can connect them with workshop and session organizers, that's a great gap that you would fill for us. Thank you.
>> BIANCA HO: Great. We are seeing a lot of hands, actually the resource pool is something we are working on, and we actually aim to put together mailing lists. So after that it would be great if you guys can contribute. The lady in the back. (?) Hello. Okay. Can you hear me?
>> MARY UDUMA: My name is Mary. I'm from Nigeria and I organise the IGF in Nigeria and for two years we will be having the youth side of the IGF because the first one we had, the youth complained to us that we didn't take them into consideration. They did not participate enough. So what we did is to give them a whole day. Is there a thing they tell us what they want, what they want to see at the Conference at the IGF, I mean, youth IGF, and they came up with the committee. But we did enhance one thing for them, allowing them, we are in capacity with them, asking Google, Google came, build capacity on how to make good use of the Internet, social capital, social enterprising, and all that help the youth grow in the Internet.
And I work with young people that are younger than the youths we use, we spoke to, and those ones are very shy. And they don't always come out, but when we allow them on their own, we leave them on their own to do their work, they come out with very good work. And it would be nice for each region, I don't know whether IGF is organising region, but the national IGF, the regional IGFs should encourage the youth IGF, and then from there let them select some youth.
So I want to see African youths, apart from him, African youth sit down with others and exchange ideas and come up with what they want and tell us what we are not doing well, and then we will get them going. But we must get them engaged. So it will not just be that they come, you know, they don't know where to go to the room. We can just set up things that will get them engaged throughout the period they are here. Thank you.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. I think that goes back to the resource pool and correct me if its wrong, you want the feedback heard from youth to give to the organizers as well. There is also another person in the back. And also, I just wanted to mention, as kudos to the translators, they actually stayed behind for us, so addressing the language barrier issue. They are supposed to leave right now, but they are staying an extra ten minutes, so I think language barrier is also something that they are trying to address, so please, go ahead.
>> AUDIENCE: Thank you. My name is Aristeh. I’m speaking in personal capacity. Many good things have been said, but for that we need many, many things to do. We need to have a plan. We need to have organisation. We need to have modality. We need to have mechanisms, and so on, so forth, and first of all, we need to have more participation either physically or remotely by youth that we don't see that here. So we have to encourage that as much as possible.
The needs of the youth in various parts of the world are different from each other. They need to be adjusted to the local or regional or sub regional requirements, needs, preparation, you need to have prepare initial material, you have to translate it in their own languages, if they could not speak either of the six official or whatever language. So they need the preparation. What we have said is very good and valid, but we have to put into implementation. We have to have the modality. We have to have the mechanism, so on, so forth. So I hope that if we take it forward to see what are the ways and means to implement that based on the regional, national, sub regional requirements, preparations, and above all we need funds. That is something very important one way or another. And we need to also have the collaboration of all involved, regional, sub regional organisations, institutions, constituencies, so on, so forth. I hope you will put it in some sort of the arrangement that we should take it forward and we should go ahead. Otherwise we are talking, yes, we need this, we need that without implementation plan. That doesn't work. Thank you very much.
>> BIANCA HO: Yes, we actually are indeed working on the implementation plan. I think that's why we need this workshop, to bring this forward. Especially having Europe, Asia, everyone together. I also see, do you want to speak?
>> WILSON LAM: Thank you, Bianca. Addressing the gentleman's questions, we need implementation plan. Actually we have been doing different source of YIGF, we have been listening YIGF projects around the world and also Europe and Asia. One of the key things I want to address here is that every time we do a lot of IGF, YIGF in different parts of the world, we see, we see a lot of encouraging results. For example, myself, I was in India, APR IGF this August. The participants are so motivated and so passionate on discussing Internet Governance issues and they are motivated to bring changes to local communities, to cities, to their countries through ICT technologies. They are prepared. The capacity building is done or has been achieved a lot. So what we should think about is what is the next step.
The things we discuss stay in the Conference or stay in our own minds. At least we are at the most level, we broadcast it onto the Internet, but it never makes to the policy level. Policy makers didn't have the chance or they don't even care to listen to our opinions, so what I would like to propose here is to redefine the youth participation on these kinds of Internet Governance issues so what is participation?
Are we just there to discuss or we should be allowed in environment with support where different information and we are allowed to decide on what we are going to talk about, how are we going to talk about, and what is going to, is important for us, important for the future of Internet for the next 40 years, 50 years. So this is what I suggest should be done. That's the implementation plan for the next step and that's what we take it to the next level.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you, Wilson. I think that's a valid point. Let one of the panelists, Jon, to speak about your point first and then I will move on to you. Jon.
>> JON URISTIAN LANDR: Can you hear me? I'm Jon from Denmark and I'm here with Danish Youth Panel, and I think it's been a fantastic discussion, and but it still needs to address a dilemma I have encountered. I have said it before in some of the workshops, but I need to say it again is that the more that these fantastic young people actually are able to express their rights and tell about that they are children with a voice and we as adults should listen to them.
They are also a huge group of different participants at the IGF who say, well, when you can talk so much and not so much about the UNCRC, then you are not actually real children. It's kind of an attitude that is here. I think that we also as adult participants need to look at our self and how we look at child participation.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. That's a valid point on the adult participation, and I think that that goes back to what was mentioned earlier on the youth panel.
>> SHAROLINA VILLALTA: Hello to everyone. I'm going to speak in Spanish. Can I speak Spanish?
>> BIANCA HO: I do not know Spanish, but I think the interpreters are still here. (No English translation).
>> SHAROLINA VILLALTA: I'm from Central America and I'm extremely happy to be here with you this afternoon. It is very satisfactory to be able to meet with other members of the youth of the IGF to see that the youth are interested in developing better networks. And it was said just now that it's very good to meet other youth members, but it's very strange. We don't see very many adults with us, but I explained if we want to set up something good, we don't just require the youth. We also require the experience of the adults to help us to carry out great endeavors.
The issue of the Internet, I think that we should also have representation at global level. I was seeing here in the panel, for example, that there is no representative from America, only North America. And Central America, South America is not represented. And many other countries that have been able to set up huge endeavors at global level, but I believe that this needs to be addressed.
So that the Internet can be discovered in other countries as well. Let me be brief, but to give you an example what's happening, of what's happening in Guatemala. Yesterday in Guatemala an initiative was launched by Congress to have control of social networks so that youth can no longer post anything anonymously, and for us young people the use of the social networks are very useful because it's the only way we are able to express ourselves freely. And the Government wants to prohibit this possibility of us being able to speak about the Government.
And for us freedom of expression very often we express ourselves, but we have to be cautious. We are not allowed to say sensitive things about the Government because they block our pages, they follow what we are writing, and this is happening with the law, but if there was to be an initiative for persecuting youth for wanting to use our right of freedom to expression, not just about the Government, but everything that we dislike, they will not allow us to be able to have this opportunity. We have a great deal to do, and the fact that we are here means that we want to be that generation that is going to be responsible for the Internet being, continuing to be for everyone. Thank you very much.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you so much, and I think it's great to include a Spanish voice, in fact, making good use of the Main Hall here with the interpreter. So thank you so much. I think I really agree with the point that there should be a Forum where youth can exchange as well as best practices and what's going on here and there, but I think the other important thing for this workshop today is actually to come up with measures or things that can structurally include youth in the Internet Governance.
So, for example, I think something that Subi mentioned would be having the resource pool where adults can find youth on the panels to speak about their thoughts. They can also give feedback to the organizer. So another thing I call for actually is actually having measures on youth Internet Governance. What that means is, for example, the number, percentage of participants who come to IGF under 25, for example, is maybe 3% this year. So next year the IGF Secretariat should move on to like 5% or even more. So in this way people can actually track it, but before I move onto this one, maybe Subi wants to ‑‑
>> SUBI CHATURVEDI: Subi Chaturvedi. That is a measurable way we would like to work towards. One quick announcement we are initiating best practice Forum which is looking at removing barriers for participation, youth in the IGF. You will find the details on the IGF website, it's IND.org. Make sure you sign up and contribute. We want to listen to you and make sure we move forward with you. So I'm at Subi Chaturvedi@Gmail. Feel free to write any time. We love your participation and we welcome it. Thank you, Bianca for doing a stellar job.
>> OLIVIA BANG BRINCK: I'm Olivia from Denmark. What you said in the start over there that youth has to take initiatives as well, I totally agree with that, but there is just kind of a problem. I'm honored to be here, but I wouldn't be here if there wasn't an adult who had asked me to be here. Youth can't just go in here and say, yes, I want to participate in this. Listen to what I'm saying. We have to wait for adults to ask our opinions, which I think is a really, really big problem because we can't take the steps without adults. That's one of the big problems about why youth aren't on the big Internet Governance Forums.
>> BIANCA HO: A good point is maybe we should issue a statement for adults to sign and say, yes, I will listen to youth. I think that's a very easy type of campaign that we can do at IGF, and I think it is heard multiple ways. It's heard on the attitude and other aspects as well. Actually, let the gentleman speak, yes.
>> AUDIENCE: I am international coordinator in Turkey. And I wanted to talk short consult of what are the Internet use, I wanted to talk both positive and negative effect of the youth. The Internet has a measure of everyday life for most countries especially today, but some say that Internet has negative effect in its use more than positive. It is more positive than negative. Such like that, a positive way is allow them to say talk with one another is good for social. It’s good for them to stay in touch with their partners much more easily when they are out. I wanted to add giving negative and positive effect of Internet like that. That's a good, that is teen use the Internet like that, and websites and not good. It's more effort to be negative and more time. Too much Internet use can damage the teenager. I wanted to comment.
>> BIANCA HO: Yes, I agree with your point on the fact that Internet could be harmful, but I think our discussion should, again, be focused on maybe developing for the youth in the developing countries, maybe there is a remote participant question.
>> REMOTE MODERATOR: James, from Cameroon League of Development. What measure have been in place to get the African youth on board the Internet Governance because you could count the African youth who took part in the African Internet Governance? So what particular policies have been put in place in the international level to spur up African youth participation. Is there anyone who would like to, Jonathan.
>> MARY UDUMA: I think to answer his question as I said in Nigeria, we have youth IGF we have started. And we are going to introduce that at the African level, the next African IGF want to have a new youth session for the African IGF and that's what we are doing, but we didn't know about this and we should have been able to organize to sponsor at least two or three of the youth to be here.
>> BIANCA HO: Jonathan, then yourself.
>> JONATHAN SSEMBAJHEE: She has said it very well, but I want to go back to empowering youth, but especially in Internet Governance. I know very many young people would like to participate in Internet Governance and in other issues affecting them, but they cannot do it without support, so I think they should be allowed to call upon parents, Governments, and NGOs to offer support to these young people to support the youth. We should show the need to parents, Governments and organisations that there is a need for the youth to participate in issues that affect them. I think that will help a lot. Thank you so much.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. I would like to ‑‑ sorry. This gentleman first.
>> KABIR DARSHAN SINGH CHOUDHARY: Hi. Hey, my name is Kabir. I'm a legislative assistant in the Government of India and working with the National Indian Registry as a part‑time research associate. I have a legitimate concern which I would like to bring to everyone's notice is that when we are running on the assumption that there is youth who understand the Internet Governance issues who want to participate here. Let me just give you the statistics of India right now that we have about 117 million Smart Phone users, about 10% of Indian population is using the Internet, but I can say it with confidence that majority of them do not understand the Internet Governance issues, even at the rudimentary stage.
Having been fortunate to work with National Internet Exchange of India and the Government of India I understand these issues and I can be here, but some initiatives need to be taken that if we have these people who are already Internet users and Smart Phone users that at rudimentary and base level even in places such as law schools and in colleges there they are at least informed about these Internet Governance issues and what exactly is going on in these issues because most of them are either unaware, which is the point which she highlighted about.
So good efforts have been made by Ms. Subi Chaturvedi, but in India as well as other countries need to be done so people get to understand these issues so they can move to the next level of being represented at the Internet Governance Forum as well. Thank you.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you for your point. There is a few things I want to address. Number one is I think the resource pool can actually, so a lot of people from so called Developed Countries, and I don't think there should be a line to draw between the developed or, Developing Country. I think it's more developed Internet Governance discussion and developing Internet discussion. I think that's a better way to frame it, and I think it would be better for us to put on the resources that we already have on training the children.
I think in fact that's what some are trying to do that we are putting on the training programmes that we have always put up, have been conducting for everyone, and then we can potentially put that in a resource pool and have people from India or Bangladesh to learn about Internet Governance. And I think the resource pool can sort of act as a bridge and as a gap between people in the developing Internet Governance discussion and people with the developed, more developed Internet discussion especially on the youth side.
The other thing I also want to mention is that I have actually seen remote, some remote participants actually put up a Twitter list on a lot of the remote participants, the remote participants as well as the issues on youth. So I think remote participation could be starting gateway for developing countries who may not have necessarily as much resources after they build up the capacity building using the resource pool. Then next kind of gradually get the awareness among parents, teachers, and as well as other people to get them funding you guys to come here to the Internet Governance discussion Forum. So there are two comments right there.
>> JULIA REDA: I thought that was a very interesting statistics that a majority of young Smart Phone users don't know, don't understand Internet Governance, the thing is the majority of policy makers don't understand Internet Governance either. I have not met a single member of the German Parliament while I was here. I have met a couple of people who are in German parties or some people who are Internet activists from Germany, but they are always the same people that I have met several times before.
And if nobody understands what we are talking about here, maybe it's not a case that we have to educate everybody. Maybe there is nothing wrong with the people, but there is something wrong with us. And I think, well, maybe to make this a little more clear, I think it's really great that some organisations and some groups are bringing new people to this Forum. And I think this is extremely important, but at the same time, for example, I was having a discussion or rather an argument with a participant of the IGF yesterday evening who was saying that I wasn't really qualified to comment on Internet Governance because I was calling the Internet assigned number authorities IANA instead of IANA.
If something like that happens to you, don't take their crap, seriously. I think if we want to have a broad discussion in which everybody is able to participate, then we really have to take the people who have been at this Conference for years out of their comfort zone and also force them to talk in a different manner. So, for example, instead of having panel discussions in every single workshop where people talk in a row, we could also try formats like, for example, a fish bowl or a bar cam where people actually also have to change their own language to a way that everybody who is in the group is participating, because, yes, some people here at the IGF are trying to get new people in, but I think at the same time, there is a group of people who consider themselves technological elite and a group of nerds that don't want everybody to take part because they feel comfortable staying amongst themselves.
>> BIANCA HO: That's a good point and a statement for, yes, I want to listen to the youth so I think that's something we can collectively do. So we have a lot of people who are trying to speak. I'm going to limit all of you to one minute because we have eight minutes left. So first you and then and then the one standing and the youth in the green shirt. And I will move on to you guys.
>> REMOTE MODERATOR: So thanks. I will try to be brief. I'm not talking in my voice, my own voice, but since remote participation is not working well. I ask many summer school which is the youth section at EuroDIG and they have been posting many questions and many recommendations. So I'm giving them back in the Forum right now. The first point that they want, that Klaus Remiter want to make in his opinion Internet Governance should be a process taking place on the Internet to a way larger extent than it currently is.
It can be that people have to travel somewhere else, so remote participation is very important, and also the need for a Twitter wall so that remote participation does not only depend on the WebEx but also on the other media, which is the place where the youth is communicating mostly and participating remotely mostly. This is one of the ‑‑
>> BIANCA HO: One minute has run out. Can you be brief?
>> REMOTE MODERATOR: Other point that is being made best practice paper for the next IGF. And the last point that was made is ‑‑ no, that was it. Thank you very much.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. And then the one sitting in the suit.
>> AUDIENCE: Yes, thank you, I'm Binta from the NIGF. We have one goal and that's go get more youngsters to the IGF and let them be here more next year. I don't think like the gentleman said here we need more models and papers and measures and more people spending 50 minutes talking and doing their talks. This panel shouldn't be here next year because if everybody, and I want you to listen carefully, if everybody in this room talks to someone at home and tells a good and nice story about the IGF and what can be reached there, and talks about it with brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces and gets someone along to here we are with double numbers next year. If we do this and we don't take two, but three people with us, we can make the next IGF, the tenth IGF, the youngest IGF in history, and I want to reach that.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. That's a very good point. And I think another measure that we should take is actually the youngest person in the room. And then we know, I know it's 13, Olivia. So moving onto the one standing.
>> DEL CLERKS: Yes, thanks, I'm Del Clerks from Amsterdam, and I'm here, I'm an entrepreneur and I'm here on behalf of myself, and I like what Kabir said because he warned us basically that not everyone in, for example, countries is aware of the issues that are there in Internet Governance, but I just wanted to say I'm from the Netherlands and our Internet adoption on youth and other people is huge, but if I ask my classmates anything about net neutrality, for example, they have no idea what I'm talking about.
And actually one of the things that I think would be a great starting point to get people interested in these topics is to launch more national IGFs. So we got a very active IGF in the Netherlands, the NRIGF and that was the place where I got in touch for the first time with these topics, and I think there is a way lower threshold to go to the NRIGF or your local IGF and I also met a Dutch politician yesterday at breakfast in my hotel who was attending the IGF.
And next to me was sitting a man from the Amsterdam Internet Exchange and when he introduced himself and told he was from the Amsterdam Internet Exchange, and the Amsterdam politician said, you work at a stock exchange? That's cool. So that proves your point that even the politicians that come to the IGF are apparently not so aware of what's actually going on. So that's what I wanted to say. Thanks.
>> BIANCA HO: Thank you. It's a very good point as well. So the one in green, and then finally Michael.
>> VARUN SRIVASTAVA: Hi my name is Varun. I'm a student volunteer from India. I just want to take this moment not to talk about the under representation, but to appreciate the youth which is already here, and I just want to give you very brief story about myself, not a story, just a comment. I have come here completely on my own. I am self‑funded for this because I had the choice and I'm really lucky, but I want to really talk about how easy it was for me.
There is no other platform in the world where I think I could have registered without any, with being just a student volunteer here. And I agree completely there are issues of awareness and funding which need to be extended which we are doing which the organisations are doing, and I know 100