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Internet Summit Claims Success in the Midst of Protest

Tunis,(11-18-05) The World Summit on the Information Society has just released a statement of their resounding success in Tunisia, where they maped the course of the internet toward a goal of global connectivity by 2015. Meanwhile, the "digital divide" was demonstrated throughout Tunis, where internet sites were blocked and civil society organisations experienced a police crackdown.
On November 15th, representatives of government, industry and civil society met in Tunis to determine the future of the internet. They came to agreement on a common agenda on the eve of the summit with much greater ease than expected. Essentially, they agreed not to make any dramatic changes in the internet but to "ensure the global availability of internet resources" with a goal of connecting everyone on the planet by the year 2015. In number item 58 of a 122 item agenda, they agreed that:
58. We recognise that Internet Governance includes more than Internet naming and addressing.
Worries about naming were much more minor than perceived by some US interests. The technical means for naming is managed by a non-profit organization based in Marina del Rey, California called ICANN, the acronym for Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. Although they are regulated by the US commerce department, their internal structure has always had international representation. They also have an office in Brussels, Belgium.

Ironically, websites from some side events at the summit have been blocked inside Tunisia, including the site for the Citizens Summit on the Information Society

Journalists and human rights activists are reporting a crackdown and cancelled several events in protest of the human rights violations occuring in Tunis. The main website for the World Summit posted a copy of the CSIS statement and provided a link from their news page. One of the purposes of the actions by the CSIS intends to:

suggest that in future the United Nations gives careful consideration to hosting events of this nature in countries where the necessary preconditions for people meeting and working together peacefully do not exist
In spite of the continuing repression surrounding the summit, it has just issued a statement declaring a itself a "resounding success":
Geneva, 18 November 2005
— The second phase of the World Summit on the Information Society closed today after almost a week of intense negotiations, eight plenary sessions, 308 parallel events organized by 264 organizations and 33 press conferences attracting around 19’000 participants worldwide.

Hailed as a resounding success by national delegations from 174 States and participants from more than 800 entities including UN agencies, private sector companies and civil society organizations, the Summit was convened in Tunis to tackle the problem of the “digital divide? and harness the potential of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to drive economic and social development.

Although the accomplishments inside the tight security of the summit were significant, the "digital divide" was clearly demonstrated on the streets of Tunis and on every computer in Tunisia with the wolf of oppression on every door.


David Roknich


DOGSPOT

 
 


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Internet Structure in Dispute at WSIS

Internet Structure in Dispute at WSIS

radio.indymedia.org/news/2005/11/7661.php

The International Community seeks Dialogue with ICANN

The second phase of the World Summit on Information Society will take place in Tunis from November 16-18 2005. Many countries are seeking a dialogue with ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. ICANN is a private company created by the U.S. Department of Commerce to control all the names and numbers of websites throughout the world.

audio: MP3 at 8.8 mebibytes

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