The UK IGF was held on 1st July 2014 at St. Ermin's hotel, London, England. The Nominet Chair Baroness Rennie Fritchie gave the sponsor's welcoming remarks. She said "The IGF provides an opportunity for discussion, dialogue, divergent views, and encourages people to speak-up".
The event had about 50 participants. The Minister for Culture, Communication and the Creative Industries Hon. Ed Vaizey, MP gave his keynote speech and fielded questions from participants.
The agenda had 6 items:
Despite the low turnout (attributed to conference fatigue at ICANN) the discussions were healthy with key takeaways. The government was taken to task on her position on Net Neutrality, which she seemed to contradict herself with no clear position. However, the Minister stated UK is concerned on the kind of regulation being discussed in Europe that would stifle businesses. The IGF organizers were also not able to clearly indicate how the outcome of previous IGFs were used to influence policy, only stating that multistakeholderism and dialogue was part of the success of the IGF. The UK also stated she was able to adjust policy positions from outcomes of the IGF and have UK positions in bilateral talks with the greater EU. However, there was no example given on these positions. Mr. Vaizey noted there is need to strengthen IGF locally and internationally.
UK Internet Governance position for the IGF
The session on Internet Governance landscape identified the following positions for the UK
It was appreciated that the IGF landscape has changed greatly. For example, at NetMundial, all stakeholders were treated equally with Civil Society, private Sector, Government, and Technical Community all queuing up to the microphone to make their submissions. IANA stewardship was identified as a positive step taken by USG's NTIA. A key point was that the idea of human rights has become more mainstream in Internet Governance.
One hindrance identified to multistakeholderism was the fact that not all stakeholders understand the issues being discusses. An example is eight out of nine US Supreme Court judged do not use emails. What kind of decisions would they make if IG issues were presented in their courts?
Relevance of the Istanbul IGF.
The IPv6 Session
The session covered updates on IPv6 addressing use in UK and explored the potential barriers to it's adoption. The panel was chaired by Olivier Crépin-Leblond Chair of ISOC UK England, with panelists being Alain Fiocco of CISCO, Tim Chown of University of Southampton, and Adrian Kennard Andrew and Arnold Ltd.
It was noted that UK is trailing other European countries in roll-out of IPv6. The global growth of IPv6 roll-out was at around 8% as of 2014. The challenges identified that face the implementation of IpV6 were:
In the past, there were Few equipment especially core routers and client premise equipment that supported IPv6. Now most devices are IPv6 compliant.
It was identified that as of July 2014, only 4% of the Internet users had access to IPv6. The big players like Google, Wikipedia, Yahoo, Facebook, Microsoft, etc. are on IPv6. A key point was the driver for IPv6 roll-out seemed to be innovation and not demographics.
The Network filtering session came into a conclusion that education was more desirable in protecting minors online instead of blocking websites since the minors could still access the content from other devices elsewhere.
The wrap-up session was a Q&A session between Kate Russell, freelance Journalist and BBC Click presenter with Eleanor Bradley, CEO of Nominet.
NB: Key take-away from the IGF: Possible areas of research — IPv6 uptake in Kenyan Universities. Universities are agents of change in society, and they usually have good budget. Why are they not leading the way in implementing IPv6?
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