EuroDIG Internet conference to assess privacy versus freedom of expression

Strasbourg, 06.06.2014 - Over 600 participants will attend an internet conference to assess the balance between privacy rights and free expression at the European Dialogue on Internet Governance (EuroDIG) in Berlin from 12-13 June.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier will open the conference, which will take place at the German Foreign Office and hosted by the Association of the German Internet Industry (ECO).

The Council of Europe will be an integral part of the conference, having recently published a human rights guide for Internet use that covers freedom of expression and information, freedom of assembly and privacy and data protection. A German translation will be made available in Berlin.

Nils Mui┼żnieks, the Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights, will be part of an opening panel to assess a “roadmap” for Internet governance.

Participants will include stakeholders from industry, governments, academia and civil society such as Stefan Kapferer, State Secretary in the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy; Fadi Chehadé, President and CEO of ICANN and Kathy Brown, President and CEO of ISOC.

Who to administer Internet’s address book?
The conference will address the future organization of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), which is a department of ICANN, responsible for Internet administration and the allocation of names and numbers on the Internet. The U.S. Department of Commerce plans to relinquish this role in managing the internet’s address system, preferably by September 2015.

A recent survey of 1,000 Internet users aged 18 to 65 from Germany by the public opinion research institute TNS Emnid for eco found that a majority of Internet users (around 40 percent) would like the EU to take more responsibility for “Internet governance”. Some 35 percent would like international organizations like the United Nations to be more involved.

In the closing session on Friday, an outlook for the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) meeting in Istanbul in September will be communicated.

Contact: Panos Kakaviatos / +33 698 37 6404 / @PanosCOE / @_eurodig