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[npoc-voice] National Net Neutrality Policy, and Civil Society and NGO seats at the table

  • To: NPOC membership <npoc-voice@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: [npoc-voice] National Net Neutrality Policy, and Civil Society and NGO seats at the table
  • From: Sam Lanfranco <lanfran@xxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2015 08:57:57 +0700

NPOC Members,

The rapid global expansion of the Internet has been uneven country by country depending on technical capacity, market forces and public policy. Increasingly the Internet is becoming a target of public policy and this is most apparent in two areas. One is the area of political voice and advocacy, driven by civil society concerns around human rights, freedom and governments concerned with security, advocacy, and control. The other is the issue of Net Neutrality driven by notions of rights and freedoms on one side, and by commercial interests on the other side.

In India cell phone carriers are exploring ways to disrupt voice over IP from mobile devices, pushing customers to use metered cell minutes. In the United States Congress is poised to vote on net neutrality legislation on February 26th. Mozilla Advocacy, supported by the Mozilla Foundation, creators of the FireFox browser, is an example of a national mobilization effort in support of Net Neutrality.

See: https://advocacy.mozilla.org/

Increasingly some of the operational issues of the Internet and its DNS will be impacted country-by-country by national policy and it is important that civil society and not-for-profit organizations strengthen their awareness of the issues at the national level and deepen and broaden their engagement around issues of Internet governance, policy and implementation at the national level. Business and political interests are already around that national policy table. It is time for a stronger Civil Society and NGO presence around that national policy table.

It is important to realize that Internet policy and its implementation will impact the work and mission of all Civil Society and NGO organizations and not just those with a primary interest in the Internet and Internet governance.

Sam Lanfranco,  Chair, NPOC Policy Committee

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