by Olivier Crepin-Leblond and Rafik Dammak
The genesis of the Cross-Community Working Group on Internet Governance (CCWG Ig), as well as other similar initiatives, dates back to several Internet Governance developments from last year, including the conception of /1net during the IGF in Bali and the Montevideo Statement signed by the leaders of a number of organizations involved in coordinating the Internet’s global technical infrastructure. During the ICANN 48 meeting in Buenos Aires in November, there was a lot of community discussion on Internet Governance as well. In fact, it was during a well-attended, early morning community meeting that the CCWG Ig was suggested. The idea was to the provide the ICANN community with an opportunity to contribute to the dialog and outcomes of the Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance, also known as NETmundial, through a community-led, bottom up process.
Shortly after the meeting, the CCWG Ig was launched with the following communications tools:
- Working Group Wiki Workspace at (https://community.icann.org/x/kyWfAg);
- WG Email List Subscriptions (http://mm.icann.org/pipermail/ccwg-internet-governance/);
- Weekly calls (the minutes and action items can be viewed in the Wiki workspace).
Participation in the CCWG is open to members of participating ICANN Supporting Organizations and Advisory Committees with at least one representative from each SO, AC and SG but no more than five. In addition, SOs and ACs are allowed to nominate “observers” who can join all conference calls and contribute at the discretion of the meeting Chair, but are not allowed to post on the WG mailing list nor participate in the consensus determination. All members of the group are involved in or have an intimate knowledge of Internet Governance issues, and have affiliations in other groups (IGF, ISOC, IETF, Regional Internet Registries, etc.). ICANN is providing staff to support the WG activities.
To define the objectives, scope, rules and procedures for the Working Group, the members of the participating SOs and ACs adopted a Charter which is still under discussion and improvement. The document states that the group “has been established as part of the ICANN Community’s preparation for the /1Net initiative, the Multi-stakeholder Meeting in Brazil in 2014, as well as the Panel on the Future of Global Internet Cooperation and related Fora to coordinate, facilitate, and increase the participation of the ICANN community members in these fora and processes”.
To achieve its objective, the CCWG Ig will undertake, but is not limited to, the following activities:
- Give guidance to ICANN Staff and CEO regarding Internet governance issues;
- Organize SO and AC-focused sessions at ICANN events;
- Disseminate and summarize relevant information related to the Internet Governance events and processes;
- Draft and submit Position Papers and Statements on its own behalf.
The Group has two upcoming priorities:
Plan a public session and a face-to-face meeting during ICANN’s 49 event in Singapore. The public session is a real opportunity to hear from the community about the Group’s work and to gather their input for the Group’s next stage of work.
Prepare the content to contribution to the NETmundial meeting. In the multistakeholder spirit of the meeting, all interested parties will be able to make their content contributions through the website to discuss collectively-accepted Internet governance principles and propose a roadmap for the further evolution of the Internet governance ecosystem.
We believe that the participation of multiple stakeholders and voices is crucial to the development of Internet Governance processes and activities. We need to work together to shape the future of the Internet and to ensure its continued prosperity and growth. Here are four ways to get involved:
- Join our Working Group’s discussion list as an observer;
- Take part in the global conversation;
- Fill out your expression of interest for the NETmundial meeting;
- Make your content contribution!