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ISOC at the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Paris, France, 3-5 September 2008; ISOC coordinating break-out session on Internet and Human Rights

The 61st Annual Conference of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) associated with the United Nations was held at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris from 3-5 September 2008. To mark the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the conference was entitled Reaffirming Human Rights for all: The Universal Declaration at 60 and was organized in partnership with UNESCO, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the Government of France.

During this meeting, NGOs coordinated break-out sessions to follow each of the high-level governmental roundtable sessions. ISOC, as chair of UNESCO's Joint Programmatic Commission on Communication, was asked to coordinate the Internet and Human rights break-out session, which followed the high-level roundtable on Human Rights and Human Security.

For ISOC, this was an excellent opportunity to work on a common agenda with a broad range of NGOs (including research institutes, think tanks, and Civil Society), which also have a formal relationship with UNESCO.

Agenda
  1. Ethics and the information society
    • As the Internet expands, what are the core principles (freedom of expression, access, diversity, etc.) that must be respected? What are ethics in the information society?
    • What are the fundamental values upon which these principles are based (human rights, common values, etc.). Do they imply rights? Duties?
    • Does this reassert and/or reinvent ethical issues and does it lead to new rules?
  2. Ethical solutions in an evolving environment: code of ethics and the Internet model
    • The ethical issues of empowering Internet users
    • How the Internet model respects these fundamental values (openness, accessibility, neutrality, etc.)
    • UNESCO’s draft Code of ethics in the Information Society

Moderator:

  • Divina Frau-Meigs (University of Paris 3, Professor, Focal point for the WSIS Taskforce on "Education, Academia and Research", ex-vice-president of IAMCR), Read Biography... (PDF: 16KB)

Chair and Rapporteur:

  • Constance Bommelaer (Internet Society, Senior Manager of Public Policy), Read Biography... (PDF: 8KB)

Keynote speakers:

  • Marc Knobel (CRIF - International Council of Jewish Women, Researcher), Read Biography... (PDF: 9KB)
  • Divina Frau-Meigs (University of Paris 3, Professor, Focal point for the WSIS Taskforce on "Education, Academia and Research", ex-vice-president of IAMCR), Read Biography... (PDF: 16KB)
  • Boyan Radoykov (UNESCO, Program Specialist)
  • Catherine Souyri-Desrosier (French Commission for UNESCO, Advisor), Read Biography... (PDF: 9KB)