IGF-USA 2015 - Kathy Brown

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>> KATHRYN BROWN: Thank you, Susan. You all know, right, that Julie is probably one of the smartest spectrum management engineers in government. At least, she always has been that to me. So, it's a pleasure here to be sharing the stage with her. And Steve, there are three of us up here now. One, two, three. So, maybe we can get somebody done. Hello, everyone. It's nice to see you. Thank you so much to our IGF USA Co Chairs David and Shane, the panel organizers, our host GW University, and Susan in particular, and all of the volunteers for having me here today. And I have to say, it's especially nice to see so many of the ISOC DC chapter members here, as well. So, I want to echo the sentiment that it's inspiring to see the growth of the local and regional IGFs across the globe. This year, we have watched as a bottom up movement has spread to create locally designed and run forums like this to share ideas, concerns, and to recommend action to ensure that the internet we all love remains open, secure, and resilient. At the Internet Society, we are a global community, 90 staff, 110 volunteer led chapters, and 145 organizational members, all united by that same shared vision. As you know, the Internet Society is the home of the Internet Engineering Task Force, the premier standards body of the internet, receiving support and proceeds from the not for profit public interest registry, steward of .org, and now .ngo domains. Over the past 25 years, we have been active in technology, policy development, and development of the internet across the globe. Our mission is to ensure that the internet is for everyone. Last week in Auckland I'm about to tell you about this thing called Intercommunity, those who are not on, are going to have to hear about it from me now. We had our first Intercommunity meeting which took place on the internet. We used this to facilitate a remarkable global meeting of our board, our staff, and our members. Our first ever hybrid meeting took place on the internet showcasing how we can use the internet to collect, collaborate, and communicate. From the furthest corner of the Earth, Auckland, New Zealand, we harnessed the internet's power to connect a total of 15 nodes in cities around the world. Accra, Amsterdam, Geneva, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Nairobi, New York, Ottawa, San Salvador, Santo Domingo, and Washington, D.C., as well as individuals in their homes. People registered from 141 countries. Just a few years ago, it would've been virtually unthinkable and unaffordable to use the internet technology in this way, but with the help of a robust network in a New Zealand hotel barroom, and using widely available, affordable applications, we are able to provide numerous ways for people to connect and communicate between the nodes and from anywhere to Auckland, and to each other with a browser. Indeed, we highlighted the agility of the internet in supporting this kind of interactivity and the extent of global engagement. I considered this a grand experiment. It was a proof of concept. We successfully demonstrated that the technology that started out with its roots in the world's first packet networks, which we heard all about this morning, can now successfully connect people on every continent on the Earth. It worked. And now the possibilities seem boundless. The internet itself is its own greatest champion. And by the way, the stories were remarkable. The people of Ghana talked about how their lives would be fundamentally different without the internet. The people in Latin America relayed their stories about how they are working to make the internet more secure. Our chapter in Manila weathered a typhoon, honest to goodness, having to move their remote node from one place to another because of the flooding and the winds that were going on there. And they did it. Our chapters in turkey and Tunis demonstrated fortitude and commitment in the face of difficulties that confront their very ability to communicate. They did it. The U.S. chapters were great, today. Folks here in New York did a fine, fine job. This kind of bottom up organization is critical to our joint responsibility to ensure that the fundamentals of the internet, its distributed global, open, interconnectedness, is preserved and strengthened even as the internet itself evolves and changes. Last week, we also saw the release of our 2015 Global internet report, Highlighting the Impact of the mobile platform on internet connectivity. More than 3 billion people globally are online, and the mobile internet offers hundreds of millions their primary, if not only means of accessing the internet. It seems certain that this mobile platform holds the promise of interconnectivity for the next billion people. Jan is here, and later on, we'll talk a lot about that. As the rise of the mobile platform will unleash creativity in innovation, we know a whole new generation of internet citizens will come online. If the next billion are coming online as a result of mobile, it is incumbent upon us to make sure that the technology and the policy does not limit them in any way. In particular, the mobile internet should remain open to enable access, innovation, and end to end global connectivity that has driven the continuous growth and evolution of the internet to date, including the emergence of the mobile internet itself. There is no doubt that there are challenges, both with preserving what we call at ISOC the invariance of the internet, what makes the internet what it is, distributed, globally connected, capable of change, and allowing us to do what we call permissionless innovation. I know my friends from the content community will call me immediately, but, what we mean by that is we do not need to go get a government license to innovate on the next thing, the next new thing. And this brings me to the current interest that has been called internet governance. Over the years, as the internet has evolved to this amazing and now critical means of connection, communication, and commerce, new institutions have emerged to provide so called government governance mechanisms. While many older institutions have struggled to understand how their role and their rules still apply to a network of networks that is not dependent on borders in which challenges the role of government in a rapidly changing, technological, social and political world, ISOC has stood steady in our insist tense that the bottom up ethic that we understand to be the internet way remains central to any discussion of governance. Within the formal policy world, we talk a great bit about multi stakeholder mechanisms. By this we mean that government alone cannot make decisions about the future of the internet, nor do we think that commercial interests should decide for users issues that rightly belong to them. Rather, we see an urgent need for collaborative governance, cooperation and collaboration between and among the interested stakeholders is what we believe is required. Now, let me list quickly the three urgent, important policy areas where this idea of collaborative governance is being stress tested. First, the IANA stewardship. You heard a lot about this this morning. It is an example of the kind of collaborative dialogue that we talk about. Each of the communities working with each other to design a proposal that will, indeed, take the U.S. out of its oversight role. This is a model of multi stakeholder consensus driven decision making that sure may look messy from the outside, but is proving to be effective for the communities involved. I am convinced that something needs to do a Ph.D. dissertation on this whole thing. It's going to be enormously interesting to see how it rolls out, and to see how these committed communities are able to reach consensus and are able to present that in a way that gets them to where they need to go. Second, the Internet Governance Forum. The mandate must be renewed by the United Nations this year. We hope the United States is standing firm on this, as well. The IGF has emerged as the prime way for all stakeholders to gather and connect about internet governance issues. There is one more IGF plan in the cycle coming up this fall in Brazil, and we need the U.N. to renew that mandate for another five years. We can imagine, I think, when using the technologies I described at the top of this talk, that these local, regional IGFs could start to collaborate with each other, distilling issues, discussing solutions, and sharing these perspectives at the global level. This is how norms get set. This is how best practices get shared, and how self governance is possible. The idea of all voices being heard brings me to the third issue, that is testing collaborative governance. This year marks, as Julie said, the 10th anniversary of the World Summit on the Information Society, and the U.N. is in the midst of WSIS ten year review, looking at their inquiry with a view towards setting their direction for the next ten years. But here's the thing. Right now, that review process is only involving governments, or intergovernmental organizations. All the other stakeholders get to watch on the outside, or talk to their own governments in order to be heard. This is not how collaborative governance needs to work. Legitimate outcomes require that all stakeholders be involved in the preparation and in the consensus building. ISOC and a number of you here in this room have joined now with over 125 other organizations and individuals to call upon the President of the U.N. General Assembly to open up the WSIS+10 review process and to have it be inclusive of all stakeholders. I would ask all of you to join with us in calling for an open, inclusive process. Now, there has been some progress. The U.N. added a day of consultation with nongovernmental stakeholders in Geneva, and consultation is good. Not enough, in my view, but good. But, as this WSIS ten review continues on through December, we need to continue to call for open, inclusive, collaborative processes that includes all the interested parties. Someone asking this morning, "What about the internet attracts the world? What would we want to preserve, even as the technology changes?" Our strong view at ISOC is that it is the distributed, open, global interconnectedness, and the people who use it to connect, communicate, create, and collaborate that has made the internet the defining phenomenon of our time. I'm impressed by this local IGF. It's a fabulous agenda. You are having the conversations that are needed, and I know that many of you already have a bias for action. We all have a collective responsibility at this crucial moment for and on the internet. We, indeed, are the stakeholders of whom we speak. Multi means many. We at the internet society are committed to work with you to have our voices be heard. Thank you for this fabulous opportunity to speak with you, to interrupt your lunch. And I don't know if there's any time for any questions for Julie and I? (Applause.) >> KATHRYN BROWN: Thank you. (Applause.) >> Thank you so much. Yep. We have about eight minutes. About eight minutes, if anybody would like to ask a question. Please, we have a microphone in the middle of the floor. Yes? Please, Michael. >> Michael always asks the perfect questions. >> AUDIENCE MEMBER: I don't always ask the first questions. Sometimes somebody gets here first. Mike Nelson, CloudFlare. This question is for both of you. If there was one country that you could convince to change their mind on these issues, which country would it be, and why? >> As usual, that's an unfair question. (Laughter.) >> We're trying to bring a lot of people along, as you know, into the notion that the internet is vital for the people of everyone's country. And that is incumbent upon government to reach out to those who know a lot about their technical expertise, those who know and want to use the internet for things like medicine and education, and all kinds of commercial interests, for there to be a dialogue at all times. And so I think this is not a, pick one country, but, please, all, let's figure out why this is good for not only individual nations, but for the world as a whole. So I'm going to duck your question. I don't think it helps to say, only you, but actually, all of you. >> (Off mic.) >> That's a different question altogether. So I'll let you (Laughter.) >> Well, I can agree with Kathy. Unfair question. We need all countries on board with this approach. What I can say is, we certainly celebrated the recent, let's say, evolution of the policy in India with respect to internet governance, and I think that the more that we can celebrate those evolutions, the more likely it is that other countries will follow suit. >> (Off mic.) >> I think we might (Chuckling.) We'll just include one last question. And then we'll have to oh, I'm sorry. Sure. Okay. Sorry. Then we'll have to get moving on to the next session, so. >> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Okay, thank you. Olga from the FCC. And thank you for your wonderful presentations, and for bringing to the platform my two passions, which is radio and internet. So, this question is probably for Julie, but for both. And now that we are at this intersection between radio spectrum requirements and internet policies around the world, to what degree do you think that the upcoming World Radio Conference will countries needs and policies to facilitate internet access growth play a role, a real, significant role in the spectrum policy? Thanks. >> JULIE ZOLLER: Thank you, Olga. As Kathy was speaking about the fact that, for many people, their primary or perhaps only access to the internet is via mobile devices, I was once again reminded how important the World Radio Conference this November is. And our top priority for that conference is the allocation of spectrum for mobile broadband. So, those are the terms we use to look at this particular agenda item for the WRC. We're not talking about it in terms of what's riding on the mobile broadband, but we're talking about the need for spectrum for mobile broadband. And it's a growing need that will not be satisfied completely at WRC 15. We already have in progress an agenda item for WRC 19 to allocate more spectrum for mobile broadband. We're also looking at innovative platforms like high altitude platform systems as additional delivery mechanisms. So, Olga asked a great question. There is this intersection, but in terms of the issues dealt with at the World Radio Conference, and that is the allocation of spectrum, the insurance that you're allocated it in a way that avoids harmful interference between services that are sharing that spectrum, is the focus of our conversation there. And that's a good thing, because it keeps the WRC technical. >> It was bound to happen. Internet technologists are about to meet spectrum technologists. I'd love for the conversation to start. I heard someone yesterday on the internet side say, we're going to need the LTD to have the connectivity, broadband, for what we need for a vibrant internet. Well, that's a particular spectrum. That doesn't happen just by hoping for it. So, I hope that conversation begins. Thank you. >> Thanks so much. And over to Shane, as we move on to our next adventure. >> SHANE TEWS: Thank you, ladies. I really appreciate all the work that you're doing. And especially Kathy, the Internet Society is providing live streaming of the main events today, as well as the streaming of anything in the main session. Thank you very much. I know that was an additional cost that you brought to thing. (Applause.)