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The Importance of IPRC in Asia Pacific

I believe and strongly support Internet Principle and Right Coalition (IPRC) Charter is an important edition of document supplementing the principles and rights of individual internet users in any developing and least developed country. Especially in Asia Pacific region where the need and use of such document is immense, as there is a gap in recognition and awareness of rights of internet users.

If you look at the current internet governance practice, then you will see there is a vivid practice of internet governance where there is gap in between stakeholders and their roles and responsibilities which is happening due to the dynamics of internet.

As we all know and support standardization, it’s a must for the achieving digital equality where IPRC helps in the overall governance process lobbies and facilitates better awareness situation as well as cooperation for individual internet rights and responsibilities.

The importance of IPRC is not just limited in defining the rights and responsibilities of individual internet users, but it helps to explore the possibilities of internet ecosystem and further expanding the concept of Internet of things where adaptation and acceptance has become a key answer to the whole Internet development process.

As the internet is growing, problems related to internet is growing; these problems are not occurring due to technical aspect but to an extent, it occurs due to lack of definition, awareness and vagueness of cyber policies and regulations. The gap and interpretation of internet core values due to lack of standardization has marginalized people in terms of access, resources and many other problems.

In most of these cases, if you look at the Asia Pacific practice, there is a lack of proper cyber rules and regulation where there is a gap of proper balance in policy and action.

The problem starts with limited core values which is then followed by vague and undefined rules and regulation that have no follow up mechanism. These gaps are so intense that irregularities are manipulating the development indicators in such a way that it’s creating an overall concept of adaptation and understanding where people fall prey.

Similarly, standardization has been a major problem for cyber policies and internet governance process which differs radically from one country to another. May be this is one of the biggest reasons for the growing problems of digital divide and net neutrality. Even in Asia Pacific there is a huge gap of economies that are rated high and low residing side by side where people may have the same rights but they have variation of action and policy mechanism.

Likewise, technology and its industry is booming but its catering the same community that is much thriving over to the old definitions which is resistant and has problems in adaptation and understanding the new technologies and its core values.

Apart from this, Internet in context of the developing countries has been passed on without any preparation of securing the rights of individual users which cannot be denied.

It majorly lacks practices of understanding the building block of internet itself which hinders its values. The radical development of technology and the differentiating policies certainly creates an overwhelming combination of a cocktail that compresses the voices and energy. When talking about internet core values, these practices fail to recognize the overall process of Internet Governance and hinders the overall internet ecosystem. Our rights and responsibilities are prejudices to these practices that are limited within the limitation of countries and regions. IPRC helps to facilitates and creates a situation of better platform of communication of preexisting and on real time individual rights.

These problem can only be solved by:

  1. Capacity building programs,
  2. Awareness campaigns
  3. Standardization of policy and definition

According to the Digital Dividend Report 2016 of the World Bank, “The report examines how the Internet can be a force for development, especially for the poor in developing countries. While the report documents many profound and transformational effects of digital technology, it finds that the broader benefits have fallen short and are unevenly distributed. The report argues that to ensure that everyone benefits, technology adoption will not be enough. Countries will need to address the “analogue components”, for example by strengthening regulations enabling firms to connect and compete, adapting worker’s skills to the demands of the new economy, and ensuring that institutions are accountable.”

Today’s internet is the internet of absolute value which is independent and which strive for the right of individual in terms of their access, resource and use. The pace of internet is growing and with the growth new concepts of multistakeholderism, collaborative leadership are also coming up which needs to be neutralized in terms of standardization and acceptance where the concept like IPRC helps to created better adaptation and acceptance strategy.

Let’s hope a day will come where there will be no barriers and people will have one technology internet and one religion humanity.

By Shreedeep Rayamajhi, ICT4D Consultant

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