Dynamic coalition on the Internet of Things Meeting
at the Sixth Annual IGF Meeting, held in Nairobi, Kenya, on 27-30 September 2011
29 September 2011, 14:30pm
The following is the output of the real-time captioning taken during the Sixth Meeting of the IGF, in Nairobi, Kenya. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the session, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
The full video of the session you can find here, the transcript for download can be found here.
>> DAVID: Welcome to the meeting of the Dynamic Coalition on the Internet of Things. You know, this is a big room and we are only a small number of people. I don’t know whether it would be more convenient, you know, if we just sit around this inner circle here. Otherwise we have a long distance if we communicate to each other. Who is in favor to move into the centre? Who is against? Oh, it’s mixed.
By the way, the plan is to be as concentrated and brief as possible. Probably no need that we spend the 90 minutes to discuss the issues we have here on the table. We did not prepare a formal agenda for this meeting because this is still, I would say, a new Dynamic Coalition. I’ll give you just a background for this.
In the height of the IGF there was a French colleague, who together with Sylvia (off mic) who is in the workshop tomorrow representing GSA1 and some others, and from the French Government, there was a small group of around 10 people. Internet was new on the agenda. France (off mic) in putting this forward, so it was France’s idea to put together this workshop on the Internet of Things. He passed away and there was no Dynamic Coalition on this Internet of things.
So when we came last year from Vilnius IGF, a number of people active in the European Union, involved in some others, thought it would probably make sense to reactivate this Dynamic Coalition, and also Bob Kahn was there and we had the speaker from the European Parliament. She gave just a report of the European Parliament on the Internet of Things, so the idea was, would it make sense to reestablish such a Dynamic Coalition. And the general mood was yes, we should do it.
So — and the question was then what to do, and we offered then to use an already planned meeting of the UNF research project, which was scheduled for March 2012 in Leipzig to get a little more clarification on a Dynamic Coalition on the Internet of Things, what it could do in the future. And in this Leipzig meeting we discussed various issues, which are more or less also presented this morning, we said we have to start with a definition to clear our understanding. There are more open questions, and a lot of things are still unclear. The terminology is there, a lot of people have an imagination what the Internet of Things could be, but probably this is also misguiding language because the Internet of Things is not separate from the Internet and whether the specific issues — which are related to the Internet of Things and which are privacy, question of monopolization, federated system, so all this was discussed and it was said, we have to continue the debate.
And here we are now. We have the workshop this morning, and the question is now, what I said in my summary in this morning’s session, should there be a continuation of the work around what is called the Internet of Things in the IGF context. My impression of my conversation I had with various partners was, in principle, yes, and in particular, because the European Union has started now this process with the task force and the subgroups and becoming public consultation, it would make sense, you know, to do this on a global level because we have a lot of extra expertise in the IGF environment which could bring additional knowledge, additional experiences to those activities.
So more or less what we should take for granted, that there is an interest of a couple of people to formally establish the Dynamic Coalition on the Internet of Things, because it’s not yet formally established, and if you go to the IGF Web site it’s not yet an IGF Dynamic Coalition on the Internet of Things. So this would be the first thing we have more or less to decide, whether you agree that we should formally establish it.
Part of this formal, formal establishment would be to agree also who could be the coordinators, moderators or should we need a small Secretariat or something like that which would help us to move forward. And the second thing then would be to look into a work plan for the next 12 months. That means should we already start here and now to think about another workshop in the IGF 2012 in Baku? And what could happen in between, between here, Nairobi now, and then the planned workshop for Baku?
And we — my proposal would be that we agree to have in between, in spring or March or April, and that’s a workshop where we probably could address specific issues, and then the small Secretariat or the moderator in consultation with all members of the IGF working group would then find out, you know, what are the issues, what are the agenda, and then could be to produce what I would call an issue paper, so that way produce something inviting an on-line discussion, and that we have until, let’s say, March/April 2012, an issue paper where we try to map what is, you know — what are the key issues and what are proposed — let’s say — I would say proposed approaches, how to deal with the issues which we have identified.
So this would be, then, the outcome. There would be a draft paper, draft issue paper would be the basis for the discussion on the workshop, let’s say in spring, April, and then would constitute the working document for the workshop in Baku.
So this is a little bit the process, and first thing is any general remarks? Any general reactions to this? And please introduce yourself because not everybody knows everybody.
>> I’m Ari. I’m an itinerant research consultant. I think another thing that we would have to do is if you look at the Dynamic Coalitions, we’d actually have to first set up our aims in some sort of way that is expressive and then we’d need to collect a certain number of people that said they wanted to be member — I mean, organizations and people that said they wanted to be members because to actually go forth and declare ourselves a Dynamic Coalition means we’ve got those two things that get presented to the IGF Secretariat saying this is our aim, this is our work plan, as you said, that can come later, and these are the people, a multistakeholder group of organizations, et cetera, that declare themselves to be members, and I think that much bottom-up process also has to happen in the process of forming ourselves into a Dynamic Coalition.
>> DAVID: I think you’re absolutely right. By the way, we have already a list of people who committed themselves to be part of this, but a mission statement is certainly needed, and you’re absolutely right, this would be the very first task, that means if we apply formally to become a recognized Dynamic Coalition, then it’s implicit that we have to deliver something like a mission statement. But we have already a number of things on paper from the Vilnius meeting, so I think if we move forward to a formalized approach, and this is a starting point, that’s why we need a Secretariat because somebody has to do this work. And so it means to — if the institution is in place, then we have two or three people who could then communicate with the list, whether the mission statement is okay and is this correct, and then we could try to get formal recognition by the IGF Secretariat.
>> Can I ask a question? Of all those people that have signed up before, have we created like a mailing list yet or anything that allows us to communicate, or is it at this point still a list of names on a piece of paper that hasn’t gone further since last year?
>> DAVID: Yes, it’s still a list of names. We use this list to invite for this meeting, and as I can see from the response in this morning’s session, it means a lot of people followed this invitation, and we did send out, you know, two or three other mails for the invitation for the workshop in Leipzig in April, but it’s not an active list for discussion, though. But you’re absolutely right, this has to be transformed into a discussion list and a mission statement and later then an issue paper. It has to be discussed by this mailing list.
More comments from others? Is there general agreement about this proposed approach? Then I would go formally to the — let’s say the first point, and then just ask in the room, you know, who would support to formalize the establishment of the Dynamic Coalition of the Internet of Things within the IGF? Who is in favor? Is somebody against it? There’s no need to ask for abstentions. Then I take this as a support and we have now a mandate of a number of people who say, okay, this is the wish, and it’s a voluntary coalition. You can join always, you know, and can leave also if you want to do it, but it would be very good, then, if you could — if you can circulate the paper, so we get all the names, email addresses from people who want to engage in this Dynamic Coalition to have a better list.
Second thing is, you know — and here comes to mission statement and probably to the issue paper. What are your impressions, what are the — let’s say five, six key issues which should be the priority of this Dynamic Coalition towards the next IGF in Baku? From this morning I have realized — a definition. It’s a question of the privacy issue. It’s a question — it’s related to the definition, the general understanding, you know, what — what this is, which is probably — the definition should be very clear and short, but general understanding should be a little bit broader. I think it’s a question of the management of the — the relationship between ONS and DNS. It’s a question of security, consumer interest, though this has been the issue raised this morning, which are still seen as open issues for further discussion, and I think if we first come up in our mission statement with four to six priority points, this would be probably helpful to guide us for the next year.
>> Good afternoon. I’m from GS1. Maybe I would rephrase the point on the ONS and the DNS in more general term as the point of addressing and search system in an IOT environment, because ONS is just one implementation of a mechanism that is applicable to our FID, a certain domain of FID, but it is by no means the only system out there to look for things in this space. I think it’s a relevant issue but I would try to sort of extend the scope of the discussion to what approaches can be proposed to this general question. And of course, the ONS can be an example of something that is already in a developmental phase that has been limitedly used in company environments, but I think it’s a broader question about how do we discuss addressing in the space.
>> DAVID: I think it’s a good point. There’s intervention today from (off mic) that’s very enlightening so that’s much more than just one specific application.
>> Hi, I’m Ian Fish, from PCS — U.K., representing them at this meeting. Is there not a major issue, a sort of major issue, where there is a difference from governance or not, from governance of the Internet and the way we understand it at the moment? Because some of the issues around privacy and suchnot may not change very much in the Internet of Things. They might but might not, but there is an issue we need to look at, where there is a difference and identify that very clearly.
>> DAVID: Thank you very much. This was also the subject of discussion this morning. This is part of a bigger issue just, you know, as another application or specific issues. And so far we have an issue paper which would probably identify what are the specific issues. It’s too early to say, this is yes or no. So we need more discussion on it. Do you want to reply directly? Otherwise ask for the floor —
>> Very quickly, yes, if I can. I just want to avoid (off mic).
>> DAVID: Very good. Thank you.
>> Sorry, I didn’t sit beside a mic but I found one. I wanted to add in the international context, which is the IGF context, I wonder, is it useful to add standardization as well as a possible issue? Not now but for some future point to look at in the group. And I agree to — but this is something I think has to be in the mission statement, that this has to be looked at in the context of all other Internet issues, privacy, for example, security. Thanks.
>> DAVID: You take note of this, okay? Any other issues where you think from your perspective this should be a priority issue, you know, it would be go too far if we now select the list with 20 or 25 issues, so we have to be very realistic that we have to look to the, you know, key issues, which will be on — can be discussed in the next 12 months and not to embrace everything which is related to the Internet of Things. Okay. Peter.
>> Good afternoon, everyone. I’m Peter Forster, I’m the general manager for (off mic) centre. We group all the Europe country codes top level domains. Forgive my ignorance, but not being terribly familiar with how Dynamic Coalitions work, how would we for instance be able to bring on board the work that is currently being undertaken by the commissions, things expert group, so that we do not just keep repeating the same exercise? That group has been working pretty hard for two years now, a year and a half, so it would be a waste if that was lost.
>> DAVID: More Or less the idea for the reestablishment of the Dynamic Coalition here came out of here from the discussion in this European environment and it will be a European of things so we have to broaden the scope. Mr. (off mic) we discussed how we should move forward, it was absolutely clear that there should be — I won’t say a harmonization, but there should be a very intention communication between the work of the Dynamic Coalition and the various groups in the task force. And it would make absolutely no sense to reinvent the wheel because a lot of good work is done. I myself, I’m chairing the sub-group for Internet architecture governance in this task force and also as we are involved here, I was involved in this new task force, like (off mic) Faber. Unfortunately he’s not here. So there should be a synchronization. And my idea is that these European — this task force could become the core team of the Dynamic Coalition, or the core team, because there’s a lot of knowledge there. It’s beyond IGF it’s global and it would be good to have people from developing countries, China, which are probably not in the EU task force. Megan?
>> MEGAN RICHARDS: I realized I forgot to say who I was. I’m Megan Richards from the European Commission. I presumed based on the workshop we had this morning it would go without saying the work in the Internet of Things that’s established by the European Commission is not going to duplicate or — this Dynamic Coalition won’t reproduce the same work. We have to work in close cooperation and there are many aspects that are similar. I see this Dynamic Coalition as a slight extension of the boundaries of what we’re looking at in the European group, and anyway, as you know very well by definition, the European group can’t look at just the European borders, which is again, something said this morning.
>> DAVID: Yeah, that’s correct. And by the way, this is guaranteed by a number of individuals who are active in those groups. Ari?
>> MEGAN RICHARDS: Yeah, I would just sort of add that in the multistakeholder nature of a Dynamic Coalition I’ve been looking at some of the other ones, where you find the Government of Brazil Ministry of culture becomes assigned into it, so some part of perhaps European Commission that was dedicated to this could actually participate as a member of the Dynamic Coalition, and that’s probably the strongest way to tie their work in, is to bring in the group that’s doing the work as a member of the coalition.
>> SATISH BABU: Okay. My name is Satish Babu. I’m from India. I’m the from the International Centre for Free and Open Source Software, and I’m a software programmer and I’m very new to this subject, but not necessarily to Dynamic Coalitions. I’ve been a member of the Dynamic Coalition on (off mic) for the last couple years. I’d like to know the general, very broad framework or framework this new Dynamic Coalition is working on. I’m personally interested in the concept of the Internet of Things, but I’d like to know whether it is confined to any subset of the very broad, for example, single devices versus (off mic) devices, smart devices versus dumb devices. Things like (off mic) or are we talking about everything like smart cards and — I don’t know, the entire — so I’d like a kind of — some kind of guidance. Personally I would like to look at applying the Internet of Things to development, to (off mic) culture, to disaster management and a bunch of other things that we (off mic). Thank you.
>> DAVID: Thank you very much. You know, as you know the roots for Dynamic Coalitions are not written in stone so it’s the people themselves who draft the working matters and what they want to achieve. And so far, you know, to have a good discussion on the mission statement seems to be important, that it means we should start immediately after this meeting by circulating a first draft and all the issues you mentioned just in your intervention, what is related. The question is what is realistic, what this group can achieve. And the proposal I made is, okay, we — based on the mission statement, we try to produce in the next year an issue paper.
For instance, the Dynamic Coalition on rights and principles over a couple of years drafted a document, rights and principles for the Internet, it’s a very fundamental and serious document which came out from this multistakeholder collaboration within the Dynamic Coalition. It means the Dynamic Coalition has to produce something. So it’s not just for discussion, an outcome. And so such an issue paper could be such an outcome, and constitute then the basis for the workshop next year and then we could see, is there a need for other next step, policy development or whether there’s no need. So it depends from the discussion, depends from the results which will come out from the issue paper.
And this is strongly in line with the way how European Commission is moving forward with the task force, the public consultation, the European Commission tries to identify the issues and then to think about in the coming year whether there should be policies or not and where there’s a need to do something. So — and so far, you know, we are more or less on the same page and can benefit from each other, because everybody in this European task force will join the Dynamic Coalition, but there’s a lot of knowledge here and probably this coalition from India, Brazil, China, South Africa, that we can also feed into the European task force, which is a benefit for all sides because there is one world, one Internet, but there’s a diversity of players, and if the players work hand in hand then it’s to the benefit of everybody.
Any more comments to the mention of key issues? If this is not the case then I propose that we draft a first, you know, text for the issue paper and circulate it among the people who are in the room and have given the email address and the other people who are not in the room but are already on the list, and then let’s wait and see, you know, how we will achieve consensus, at least a rough consensus, around this paper. If this could be done until, I would say, end of November, early December, this would be fine since then we can formally apply at least a couple of weeks before the Geneva consultation, which takes place in February, always, so that we probably until February, 2012, we have then a formal recognition as Dynamic Coalition by the IGF Secretariat so there will be a new executive Secretariat and they will probably have then to think about whether they have to renew the procedures for recognition of IGF Dynamic Coalitions, whatever it is, but it means this is a good time frame. If we say we want to finish the mission statement until end of November or end of the year and then have to formalization to the Geneva convention in February. Is this consensus here in the room? I think there is. This is fine.
So let’s then the other issue, which is the work plan. Have we?
>> Yeah. I just wanted to ask one thing about, for example, you talked about getting a document and then doing a circulation of the document on the list, which is one way, but I mean, another way we could is take something like either one of the ether pads or a Google doc or something and do two things: One, have a text of the aims there that then all of the people that get notice have access to to actually work on it, dynamically perhaps, and also then allow that to be a place where organizations, you know, can basically list their names as saying, yep, we are members of it. Because those seem to be — as I go through these, and I probably should remember better having once been a member of the Secretariat, but that’s a life gone by — that having aims and having a list of members is really the primary thing, and then after that it’s reports and doing work and stuff. But — so perhaps doing it in that sort of way might help get it going.
>> DAVID: Yeah, thanks. That’s why the coalition is named “dynamic.”
>> But so few are.
>> DAVID: (chuckle) Probably — you know, how about I come back to this point because you have to have some moderators, it’s the final point. Let me first go ahead, if we achieved in February this formal recognition, then the proposal is that we draft an issue paper and prepare a workshop in spring, March, April, May, where we would discuss the issue paper and also prepare then the workshop for Baku, because my understanding is you have to make the proposal for workshop by April or May. I think this would be more or less the right time to have a two-day workshop and during this workshop shop then also to draft the proposal for the Baku workshop, so this would be the two main activities in the coming year from this Dynamic Coalition. That means to organize the workshop and to work on an issue paper, which includes then to draft a proposal for the IGF in Baku and to prepare a workshop for Baku. I think these are very concrete steps and we have to be realistic.
We have no resources for this so that means it’s voluntary work of people who are engaged, and any comments to this approach? If this seems reasonable, then we can take this. And the final question is then we have to find some people who are doing really the work because it needs some coordination, writing of emails, managing of lists and things like that. So we discussed this already in the Leipzig workshop a little bit and the question came up, should we have a very small Secretariat — a Secretariat for this Dynamic Coalition so people have a place where they can send emails so if they have questions then they can address to somebody.
Do we have volunteers who would be ready to do something, to work in between this on the list, also the manager of the summer school of Internet Governance, and she is also the coordinator for Europe — European Dialogue on Internet Governance, so this would be more or less an environment which supposedly list this issues, and the other one is (off mic). Doria was fully involved in the European research project and she would probably be the main person to stimulate debate on the mission statement and later on the issue paper. I think these would be the two to, let’s say, moderators, coordinators of this Dynamic Coalition that we get as a Dynamic Coalition face, and then probably we could have these two people who are doing operation where we could create a small steering group where we have the various stakeholders represented. We also discussed this in the Leipzig workshop and I will bring back here, is that it would be good to have somebody from the Government, somebody from the private sector, the civil society, the academic of community. A group of five.
If I remember, Masabiliano, you had an interest to represent the private industry. From the European Commission (off mic) signaled to represent the Government, and we are still looking for somebody from the technical community who could be part of this small steering committee or this position could be taken also by Avri in combination, you know, with the operational work, and I might would then represent the academic community on the part of the civil society and if somebody volunteers for the steering crew, let me know. This is also very informal. It’s dynamic, but you have to have a certain substructure in place if you want to run the machinery. So this is the proposal. Any comments to this proposal for the organization of the work? Megan?
>> MEGAN RICHARDS: Yeah, well, obviously I don’t object to Fluo participating. The only problem is for a whole series of reasons over the next year he’ll be extremely busy, which doesn’t mean he can’t participate. But —
>> DAVID: Can you speak to the microphone?
>> MEGAN RICHARDS: Sorry. He can participate, but we will have to have a backup for him, just so you know that we have a whole series of things and we had a whole series of cuts in personnel. So even though Fluha will participate as actively as he can, you should know that we may have to have a backup of some sort. So he may not always be the one who’s participating in this.
>> DAVID: Okay. I think we should — it’s dynamic, so that means let’s wait and see how we can move forward. We will make an announcement, and we keep it always open. So that means if there are changes and new proposals, and probably next year we have reached a high level of organization and we can formalize more. I think for the moment it’s like kickstarting the process, and you have just, let’s say like two interim units, one is the steering committee, the other one is the Secretariat, and then, you know, if the people are engaged and they do the work and they can produce the workshop, the issue paper, and then the next workshop then we can decide in Baku whether we want to change the rules or we continue it or we broaden it. Is this acceptable? If this is the case, then I think it’s a good result and the very final question is obviously — okay, yeah.
>> Ian Fish again. Would it be a good idea in the steering group if we can find somebody to have somebody from the developing nations?
>> DAVID: Yes, this would be a good idea. Who volunteers? Would you?
>> India is now a leading nation so it’s sometimes difficult to label India as a developing country.
>> I’m very new to this thing, so perhaps someone else should be given the first priority.
>> DAVID: Okay. Probably we will find it out — I think there are other opportunities where we can do it but you are absolutely right, this would be make a difference to the group so that we can really say this is not only multistakeholder, this is also global, and I think this is an important point.
>> I’m Saba (off mic). I’d like to see the Asia Pacific — well, Asia is there — the Pacific involved, and it will be good to — yes.
>> DAVID: Would you yourself from Fiji Island volunteer to join?
>> Of course.
>> DAVID: wonderful. Then we have Fiji Island on the list. The very final thing, and this question goes primarily to the private sector or probably also some governmental institutions, you know. All this is voluntary work. This is unpaid work, but, you know, you have to have some resources, and so it means the question is there is no need to answer today, but I want to raise the point. It would be very helpful if you could go home and could, you know, talk to your leadership or to your Government or whatever, whether there is an opportunity, you know, to find, you know, little resources, one to sponsor the workshop in April, and probably also to sponsor a little bit the technical work of the Secretariat.
So this is not — not big money. I think what we need for the workshop and for the small Secretariat would be around, I would say, you know, 30,000 euro for the whole day, but that means if we could find three or five sponsors, 3 to 8,000 from the sponsors, this would cover the costs, and I know it’s always delicate and difficult questions. Nobody comes with big pockets to these meetings, but we would be series if we would embrace these issues, so that means otherwise we are probably too idealistic.
There is a chance that we can achieve something, I think the combination of the various members here, this morning are very encouraging that we can go forward and clarify, can make a contribution in the next one or two or three years, and so far I think we have an exciting path ahead of us. If you agree and if there are no final comments, then we can bring this business meeting of the Dynamic Coalition to a close. Any final remarks or comments or —
>> Was it — is the paper with the — with the right names in the emails? I haven’t got it.
>> DAVID: We will also, you know — the task of the Secretariat would also be to establish a Web site so that we have information there so that we can link documents to the Web site, papers which are written issues issue papers or what else, from other groups so that we have like a small library of things on the Web site, and then so that means all this work has to be done, and so far, you know, we have to have some sponsors who will help to make this happen. And that’s — that’s the reason.
Okay. If there are any more comments? Questions? Then I thank you very, very much for your engagement. I think it was a good workshop this morning, and it was a good Dynamic Coalition meeting, so we have now a clear perspective what to do. I think it’s realistic what we tried to do, and let’s wait and see how we will deliver what we, you know, have planned here. So once again, I repeat it. First step is the mission statement, then the application in the IGF Secretariat to get formal recognition, then the workshop, and the issue paper, and then the preparation of a workshop for the seven (off mic) governance forum in Baku in 2012, and I hope to see you there. Thank you very much.