In the second of this two-part review of the extraordinary year facing the Internet and its governance, professor for Internet Policy and Regulation at the University of Aarhus, Wolfgang Kleinwächter looks at the effort to develop an Internet version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the opportunities and risks presented by ICANN's new gTLD program, and the raft of over 50 "very important meetings" that will define 2012 as one of the most significant the Internet has ever faced.
If you missed part one, looking forwarding from some of the events of last year, including the eG8, India’s CIRP proposal for greater UN control, changes to the IGF, the London cybersecurity conference, Russia and the ITU, and other key events, then you can read it here.
So where is the good news?
We’ve reviewed some of the threats and fears surrounding Internet governance in 2012, but where are the options for a constructive dialogue?
In 2011, two regional inter-governmental bodies created frameworks that may provide guidance for the future of the Internet. The OECD with its 34 member states worked on a set of principles for Internet Policy Making. And The Council of Europe, with 47 member states, adopted a Declaration on Internet Governance Principles.
Both documents offer a source of inspiration for how to move toward something like a “Universal Declaration on Principles to Govern the Internet”, similar to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, developed in 1948. Both the OECD and Council of Europe documents cover more or less the same issues, propose rather similar principles but have also some interesting differences.