As the organisers explain on the Forum’s website: ‘We’re organizing the Internet Ungovernance Forum on September 4-5, for people who demand that fundamental freedoms, openness, unity and net neutrality remain the building blocks of the Internet. Our ambition is to talk about the real problems of the internet, how we can solve these and to chart a path for action.
Our forum will be in parallel to the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) 2014 which will also be held in Istanbul between September 2-5. Interested parties all around the world will join and follow this important event. We see that at IGF the most urgent problems of the Internet do not get the right attention. Due to the “multi-stakeholderism” format, the main perpetrators of many of the Internet’s problems, governments and corporations, are getting representation in IGF they don’t deserve. Given these circumstances, we decided to take initiative to defend the Internet as we know it and to create a space to raise the voices of civil society initiatives, activists and common people.
For us, the most vital problems today are censorship and freedom of speech; surveillance and privacy; excessive commercialization and super-monopolies; protective, prohibitionist and conservative governance approaches; awful governance examples as in the case of Turkey and the list goes on. Further, we do not see any of these problems independent of the greater political, social and economic contexts in which the Internet and related digital infrastructures are embedded in. We call on our participants to resist seeing the problems of the Internet as only technological and void of its materiality. We want to reclaim the Internet as a fundamental infrastructure of our societies, cities, education, health, work, media, communications, culture and everyday activities.
Today, it is more imminent than ever to strengthen networks of solidarity and connect struggles across the globe for the Internet we want. For this we envision the Ungovernance Forum to be a space in which we can discuss the problems and solutions of the Internet openly, with courage, and without shying away from conflict. To develop the program of the forum we have relied on our powerful but inevitably limited existing networks. We therefore invite all of you to use this event to expand our collective imagination and circuits of action.
As Alternative Informatics Association, we underline the necessity of the Internet as a free, equal and basic human right and regard it as fundamental to struggles of justice. If you want a free, secure and open Internet and you’re fighting for it, we ask you to join and support us at the Internet Ungovernance Forum in Istanbul!’.
The complete agenda of the Forum is available on its website.