Global Civil Society Launches Internet Social Forum


A group of 24 national and international civil society groups came together last month to form an “Internet Social Forum” on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland. The Internet Social Forum, they say, is intended to be an antithesis to the “NetMundial Initiative” launched by the WEF in August last year. The group proposes to come up with a “People’s Internet Manifesto” after consulting various groups across the world, including social justice activists, techies, and “democracy movements”, to explain their idea of the internet in international discussions.

The groups include NGOs and networks working in the fields of digital freedoms, internet governance, and human rights. The Internet Social Forum will reach out to grassroots groups and social movements across the world, developing an upsurge that challenges the entrenched elite interests that currently control how the Internet is managed. The Internet Social Forum’s preparatory process will kick off during the World Social Forum to take place in Tunis, March 24 to 28, 2015.  The Internet Social Forum itself is planned to be held either late 2015 or early 2016.

The following organisations form the initial group that is proposing the Internet Social Forum, and many more are expected to join in the immediate future. The group is calling on other progressive groups from all over the world to join the initiative, and participate in developing a People’s Internet Manifesto.

Just Net Coalition, Global

P2P Foundation, Global

Transnational Institute, Global

Forum on Communication for Integration of our America, Regional (Latin America)

Arab NGO Network for Development, Regional

Agencia Latinoamericana de Información, Regional

Alternative Informatics Association, Turkey

Knowledge Commons, India

Open-Root/EUROLINC, France, India

CODE-IP Trust, Kenya, Switzerland

Centre for Community Informatics Research, Development and Training, Canada

IT for Change, India

Association for Proper Internet Governance, Switzerland

Computer Professionals Union, Philippines

Free Press, USA

Advocates of Science and Technology for the People, Philippines

Other News, Italy

Free Software Movement of India

Global_Geneva, Switzerland

Solidarius (Solidarity Economy Network), Italy

All India Peoples Science Network, India

Institute for Local Self-Reliance – Community Broadband Networks, USA

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