The Internet Governance Forum (IGF), a multi-stakeholder public policy dialogue initiated by the United Nations Secretary-General, has been an annual affair for more than a decade. The 11th IGF is set to take place from 6th to 9th December at Guadalajara, Mexico with the theme of ‘Enabling Inclusive and Sustainable Growth’. This 4 day conference is an opportunity to discuss current as well as emerging issues in the field of digital freedoms, cyber security, Internet governance, and others, that require brainstorming, expert views, and co-operation amongst all stakeholders. At the IGF 2016, SFLC.in will be represented by our Executive Director, Mishi Choudhary and Jr. Policy Director, Arjun Jayakumar. We will be organizing two sessions on the topics of Internet shutdowns, and online harassment, and are excited for the opportunity to discuss our work, gain insights from across the globe and expand it further!
The details of our sessions are as follows:
WS 109: Analysing the causes and impacts of Internet Shutdowns [December 9, Workshop Room 4, 12:00PM (CT)]
Blanket shutdowns of Internet services, usually as a means to forestall violence and civic unrest, have been gaining traction in recent times, especially in developing countries. Restricting Internet access to large sections of the population has several wide-ranging consequences, including compromising the right to free speech and freedom of information and knowledge, in addition to making for an inhospitable environment for businesses and other entities that rely on the Internet for functioning. For details, please refer here.
If you wish to participate remotely, please register yourself here.
Lightning Session: Practical challenges in tackling online harassment [December 9, Lightning Session Area, 14:40-15:00 hrs (CT)]
While the Internet has proved over the years to be a critical enabler of free speech and expression, the very attributes of the Internet that make it so have also brought forth numerous complex challenges without precedents for effective resolution. Online harassment is one such challenge, the prevalence of which threatens to compromise the Internet’s role as an enabler of free speech. As the Internet also serves as a platform for harassing speech, users are expected grow weary of what they choose to express online and how, which takes away from the Internet’s most cherished attributes. For details, please refer here.
This 20 minute talk will be given by Arjun Jayakumar where among other things, he will discuss recommendations and suggestions from our recently published report on Online Harassment: A form of Censorship. A copy of this report can be accessed here.
Apart from the above two sessions being organized by us, Mishi Choudhary will be speaking at the following events:
- IGF High Level Meeting [December 5, Main session room, 15:00-18:00 hrs (CT)] For details, please refer here.
- Digital Rights Litigators, Pre-event organized by Access Now [December 5, Bilateral 5, 14:00-16:00 hrs (CT)]
- International Media Support- Operational responses to online harassment [December 5, Workshop room 7, 9:00-10:00 hrs (CT)] For details, please refer here.
Arjun Jayakumar will be representing SFLC.in on the panel on Surveillance and International Human Rights Law [December 8, Workshop room 4, 15:00-16:00 hrs (CT)]. For details, please refer here.