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Q1: ISOC Priorities

ISOC has a broad and large membership, with healthy debate regarding the priorities for the organization as a whole and on approaches/practices. What do you believe the priorities should be for the organization? What would you suggest the Board and Management do to bring about an agreed position?

This entry was posted by the ISOC Elections Committee on Friday, March 9th, 2007 at 11:38 am. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 or Atom 1.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

6 Responses to “Q1: ISOC Priorities”

  1. Comment by: Desiree Miloshevic   
    March 23rd, 2007 at 11:03 am

    The Internet represents perhaps the single most important vehicle for advancing human communication, education, understanding, and commerce to be developed in the last century. To date, the Internet Society’s priorities have largely been devoted to stabilizing and institutionalizing the Internet’s core technologies and technical institutions. In the years to come, I believe that this focus should be expanded to encompass additional goals and endeavors oriented toward extending these benefits to as many communities and individuals as fully and quickly as possible. Although any adjustment of priorities may create contention over scarce attention and resources, I believe that these may be largely offset by increased membership contributions, and by efforts to leverage additional new sources of support. The ISOC board priorities should be to do what is best for the Internet. Given that the basic vision of the Internet Society is to “get everyone everywhere connected by open and universally accessible Internet”, and taking into account the breadth and diversity of our membership, the best way forward is to have a correspondingly diverse mixed palette of projects. ISOC’s unique global reach and cultural diversity is our greatest asset. We must seek consensus that strengthening the Internet anywhere strengthens the Internet everywhere. Consequently our priority must be to grow our membership, our funds and our influence around the world.

  2. Comment by: Olivier Muron   
    March 25th, 2007 at 3:35 pm

    The Strategic Operating Plan provides an appropriate framework for ISOC, connecting vision, objectives, programs and projects. I will like to pinpoint a few topics that I consider to be priorities:

    - support the standardization work and continue strengthening the relation with IETF,
    - defend over and over the model, the core values of openness, transparency, end-to-end connectivity and universal accessibility, that have made the success of the Internet,
    - extend ISOC’s outreach, especially towards stakeholders that are now under-represented like stakeholders in developing countries, players of the mobile world, the Web2.0 community, users, etc. I would like the membership to be more balanced, in terms both of category and geography. This would increase ISOC’s funding and, most importantly, insure a better representation of the global community in ISOC’s work.
    - vision: ISOC is positioned at the interaction between the communities: business, technical, academic, corporate and individual users; thanks to this unique position, ISOC should be a central player in the discussions over the future of the Internet. As developed in the SOP, such a task will require a global engagement across ISOC, the IETF, IESG and the IAB, the members, the Internet community and other key stakeholders.

    In the exciting context of the digital revolution and multimedia convergence, ISOC has the crucial and exciting mission to be involved in the development of a usable, open, user-centric, reliable and efficient Internet for everyone on the widest possible scale and to help ensure its stable growth.

  3. Comment by: Patrick Vande Walle   
    March 29th, 2007 at 12:38 am

    The two membership categories in ISOC seem to have very different expectations. On the one hand, organizational members tend to favour the development of the standards process. The individual members seem to be more active in policy and education. All these pillars are inter-dependent and it is a real challenge to balance the resources of the organization to cover all aspects without favouring one in particular.

    This is actually difficult to assert, as a large part of our membership is unable to fully participate in ISOC activities, either because they have no voting rights or they are kept away from public policy development processes. It is important to remember that ISOC is a membership organizaton. As such, the last word should be with the membership, the board and staff being there to drive the Society in the direction set by its members.

    The Internet is now a part of our daily lives and will reach well beyond the interactive, computer-based usage we have today. Applications like telemedecine, internet enabled cars, etc will require to address new challenges in domains like privacy. Also these new applications lean that governments will become even more present in Internet policy issues. This is why I think it is important to focus our development on developing the policy pillar within ISOC. Our organization should aim at positively developing synergies with others like ICANN, ITU, Unesco as well as civil liberties organizations, which we could provide with meaningful technical advice.

  4. Comment by: Amitabh Singhal   
    March 29th, 2007 at 9:53 am

    Since we all know what ISOC stands for and the principles it espouses, priority task iwould be to ensure that it’s presence is not just felt but actively sought after by policy makers, governments, all other relevant national and international agencies. This task is required to be pursued with more vigour than ever before especially in the developing world, where building blocks for internet are still being placed. ISOC needs to be seen as a platform that works towards the needs of the information have nots, and that would be paradigm shift in terms of ISOC priorties. From the members perspective, this effort, could just coincide with discovery of new markets and opportunities. Members should be able to leverage ISOCs reach as and when it continues to make inroads into those underdeveloped economic strata of society, considering the fact that most big name members of ISOC spend considerable efforts and resources to target internet and related products and services for them. Plugging such altruistic efforts with commercial interests will generate proactive member participation and that’s really tshould be the second most import priority for ISOC. Such mutual leveraging would certainly bolster funding capacity of ISOC which is crucial, considering the Budget ambitions. These efforts if undertaken will succeed when preceeded by the task of strenthening and widening the chapters reach and effectiveness and that’s another priority that cannot be overlooked at any cost.

  5. Comment by: Rudi Vansnick   
    April 18th, 2007 at 5:35 am

    Fully agree with Patrick.

    Our thoughts are sometimes far away from those of the citizen not daily involved with Internet. Prioritizing the development of new technology as well as standards should at least keep an eye on closing the gap between techies and the “shorthanded” citizen. Almost every new development got names and definitions the “simple person at the corner of the street” does not understand. Why should we blame him/her for not understanding ? So, let us please keep in mind not everyone has got advantage of great education.

    ISOC could perhaps consider the creation of an “ISOC for Children”. The basic idea behind it is the fact they are going to be the next ICANN / IETF / ISOC key players in the near future. We have to train/educate/assist them in order to not lose control and to maintain the focus on the critical aspects of further deployment of this beautiful technological world. I’m taking this priority as a first realisation at the BoT. The basic project is already in preparation on national (Belgian) level.

  6. Comment by: Charles Mok   
    April 28th, 2007 at 4:27 am

    ISOC enjoys the strength of a strong branding and the dedication and commitment of its member organizations. Our diversity is our strength but it is also a challenge, even a weakness if we do not manage it well. The Board and Management may consider the commissioning of a broad, in-depth and professionally-done survey of all its members to understand their priorities. The Board and Management should also find ways to increase the amount and level of direct or face-to-face communications and meetings with all its member organizations. Issues should not be dominated only by those who are most vocal, but the Board and Management have the responsibilities to consider in balance and to prioritize for the better interests of all or most.

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