ITU Chief Says WCIT-12 Is Not About Freedom of Expression
But spokesperson suggests no agreement on U.S./Canada proposal for dealing with definitional issues first
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 12/4/2012 10:24:14 AM
That was an effort to allay fears that the conference would be about giving those countries more control over Internet conference. Tunisia also introduced a proposal to explicitly extend that to online in the treaties by adding language that says "the same rights that people have offline must also be protected online."
But according to a spokesperson for ITU following a press conference at which Secretary General Hamadoun Touré took no questions, the delegates did not agree to the U.S. and Canada request that the conference first deal with proposals to change the definition of telecommunications or who the treaties apply to before getting down to the details of any revisions of the treaties. "I don't believe that was the case," he said in response to whether the definitional changes.
Touré did say that discussion had begun on who the treaties apply to, but that that would continue.
According to an attendee at the conference, on Monday the European nations joined the U.S. and Canada in that call for dealing with definitions first.
At the press conference following Tuesday's session, Touré pointed to the adoption of support for those general universal freedoms and said that should dispel the myths about the conference and it could proceed to important issues. He said freedom of expression is not at issue in the conference, that all delegations have affirmed that, and that the goal was getting information and communications to unserved communities, sounding like an FCC official on broadband build-outs.
But issues he said would be dealt with at the conference include taxation, roaming and price parity and transparency, issues the U.S. has concerns about as potential venues for greater government control of the Internet.
Touré made it clear that the conference would be very much about broadband, how to get it to the billions who don't get it now and how to handle increasing bandwidth demands. The U.S. is concerned that could translate into taxing the Internet to raise the funds to build out broadband, particularly given the fall-off of revenues from charges for international exchange of traditional telecom traffic. Touré said there could not be "heavy" taxation, but that was likely cold comfort to U.S. representatives.
No related content found.
No Top Articles
Digital Rapids provides market-leading software and hardware solutions, technology and expertise for transforming live and on-demand video to reach wider audiences on the latest viewing platforms more efficiently, more effectively and more profitably. Empowering applications from..more