NB Sarko-Obama; Protect Net Call by OECD

In the US Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales has threatened to take the site off-line in protest at what he considers  ‘draconian’ anti-Internet freedom measures currently proposed by the Obama administration.

Remember, the internet = serious business.

Jimmy Wales might close Wikipedia in protest — Image via Wikipedia

In France there have been ongoing protests about Hadopi, the French effort to clamp down on music and intellectual property piracy — which in reality goes much further.

The Wikipedia move is in protest against ‘Stop Online Piracy’ —  the US Anti Piracy Bill — which would enable people to take websites to court for copyright infringement and is currently before the House Judiciary Committee.

Aware of concerns the Paris-based OECD-Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development has now called on its 34-member countries to “promote and protect the global free flow of information”. By email OECD’s Media Relations Manager Spencer Wilson told us the initiative aimed to build  “on a high-level international meeting on the Internet economy held in Paris in June 2011”.

“The openness of the Internet, and the multi-stakeholder framework, have been key factors in stimulating the innovation and economic growth that has characterised the Internet Economy, says the OECD. But in recent years there has been increasing concern that the openness of the Internet is eroding, with negative consequences on its dynamism and related economic activity.

“Private sector initiatives and co-regulation by industry and government have in many cases facilitated access to the Internet and promoted its use. However there have been instances where relatively heavy-handed government initiatives have been viewed as leading to potential harm. For this reason it is important to have shared common principles to help policymakers set the parameters for any action taken, as well as work towards building trust in the Internet economy both at national levels as well as in cross-border economic activity, according to the text of the Principles.

“The OECD also highlighted the importance of maintaining the existing open model of Internet governance, what it calls “the multi-stakeholder environment”. It says that stakeholders should continue to fully play a role in this framework. Governments should also work in multi-stakeholder environments to achieve international public policy goals and strengthen international co-operation in Internet governance.”

The Principles for Internet Policy Making are available here at http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/11/58/49258588.pdf

For more information on the OECD’s work on Internet governance, see here www.oecd.org/InternetGovernance

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