Covid-19 Educational Resource

Call for Papers: Covd19 and the Value of Internet Openness

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Dear all,

I hope this email finds you well and in good health in these troubled times.

This message is to start a discussion regarding the work to be developed as IGF 2020 output of the coalition and the organisation of the annual IGF meeting.

As you might know, the IGF Secretariat recently issued its call for proposals for workshops and DC meetings for the next IGF, which should in principle (Coronavirus permitting) take place in Poland on 2-6 November.

As the current covid19 pandemic offers concrete evidence of the incredible importance of being connected, I would like to propose a Symposium dedicated to “Covd19 and Internet Openness”.

The Symposium will be a collection of short essays showing the incredible value of non-discriminatory connectivity as well as the incredible potential of alternative connectivity models, such as community networks. For this reason, I would suggest developing the initiative as a partnership between 2 coalitions I coordinate within the IGF (the one on Net Neutrality and the one on Community Connectivity) as they represent complementary facets of the same debate.

The authors of the essays will be listed as speakers for the IGF session of the coalition.

I have been talking about the initiative with some of you directly and I am happy to say that we will be able to publish the essays online on MediaNama (largest tech & policy portal in India) as soon as we receive and edit them, and that MediaNama’s Founder and Editor Nikhil Pahwa has kindly agreed to co-edit the essays with me. After the publication online, we could collect all the essays (ideally between 10 and 15) and publish them in a booklet on  “Covd19 and the Value of Internet Openness” to be released at the IGF (if the IGF will be maintained) and freely accessible online. Everything will be licensed in CC, of course.

The suggestion is to explore a variety of ongoing issues going from blocking and Internet shutdowns, to zero rating and net neutrality, community network experiences and new conceptualisations of Internet access as a human right.

I have already spoken with some of you and there are a lot of good ideas already in the air.

Here is the suggested format.

  •  Essays can be 1000 to 1500 words in length. If you require more words, please consider making your contribution into a two-part post.
  • Please only use in-text citations or hyperlinks (i.e., no footnotes).
  • To take advantage of the momentum, I suggest fixing a deadline (at least for the first batch of) submissions on Wednesday 25 April. 

Those confirming their interest in writing an essay by the 22nd (and sending the first draft by the 25th) will be considered as speakers for the coalition IGF session. The 22nd is the dealine to submit a session proposal.

Please, feel free share your thoughts on this

All the best


Please email Luca at [email protected]