(Via Dixie Hawtin) The 10 Internet Rights and Principles were launched today by the IGF Dynamic Coalition on Internet Rights and Principles at the 2nd expert meeting in Sweden 30-31 March on Human Rights and the Internet, co-organized by the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Opinion and Expression Mr Frank La Rue.  The 10 Internet Rights and Principles is one outcome of the initiative undertaken by the IGF Dynamic Coalition on Internet Rights and Principles to develop a comprehensive Charter of Human Rights and Principles for the Internet.

The 10 Internet Rights and Principles are:

1) Universality and Equality. All humans are born free and equal in dignity and rights, which must be respected, protected and fulfilled in the online environment.

2) Rights and Social Justice. The Internet is a space for the promotion, protection and fulfilment of human rights and the advancement of social justice. Everyone has the duty to respect the human rights of all others in the online environment.

3) Accessibility. Everyone has an equal right to access and use a secure and open Internet.

4) Expression and Association. Everyone has the right to seek, receive, and impart information freely on the Internet without censorship or other interference. Everyone also has the right to associate freely through and on the Internet, for social, political, cultural or other purposes.

5) Privacy and Data Protection. Everyone has the right to privacy online. This includes freedom from surveillance, the right to use encryption, and the right to online anonymity. Everyone also has the right to data protection, including control over personal data collection, retention, processing, disposal and disclosure.

6) Life, Liberty and Security. The rights to life, liberty, and security must be respected, protected and fulfilled online. These rights must not be infringed upon, or used to infringe other rights, in the online environment.

7) Diversity. Cultural and linguistic diversity on the Internet must be promoted, and technical and policy innovation should be encouraged to facilitate plurality of expression.

8 ) Network Equality. Everyone shall have universal and open access to the Internet’s content, free from discriminatory prioritisation, filtering or traffic control on commercial, political or other grounds.

9) Standards and Regulation. The Internet’s architecture, communication systems, and document and data formats shall be based on open standards that ensure complete interoperability, inclusion and equal opportunity for all.

10) Governance. Human rights and social justice must form the legal and normative foundations upon which the Internet operates and is governed. This shall happen in a transparent and multilateral manner, based on principles of openness, inclusive participation and accountability.



Crosbie Fitch · March 31, 2011 at 3:44 am

Rights are violated. Privileges are infringed.

Rights are recognised. Privileges are granted.

Rights precede law. Privileges are created by law.

If you're going to grant 'control' in the name of data protection, you may as well grant 'control' in the name of monopoly protection, i.e. copyright.

No-one's ever had a natural right to prevent others disclosing their confidences or gossiping about them.

By all means regulate immortal corporations to any extent (they have no right to liberty), but don't mistake the regulations you'd apply to them as human rights that should also constrain people.


    Andres · March 31, 2011 at 7:48 am

    Hi Crosbie,

    Thanks for the comment, interesting as usual. I think we have a basic disagreement about what constitute rights, stemming from the fact that your position relies on natural rights existing. I take Jeremy Bentham's view of natural rights, namely that they are "nonsense on stilts".

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