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  • Published 04.09.19

    IGF 2019: Report of the High-level Panel on Digital Cooperation

    In July 2018 the United Nations Secretary-General, Mr. António Guterres, convened the High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation (HLPDC) to advance proposals to strengthen cooperation in the digital space among all relevant stakeholders.

    The 20-member panel, co-chaired by Ms. Melinda Gates and Mr. Jack Ma, was expected to raise awareness about the transformative impact of digital technologies across society and the economy, and contribute to the broader public debate on how to ensure a safe and inclusive digital future for all, taking into account relevant human rights norms.

    The Panel submitted the final report to the Secretary-General on 10 June 2019.
    It is available at https://www.un.org/en/pdfs/DigitalCooperation-report-for%20web.pdf.

    The IGF 2019 Annual Meeting will feature a main session dedicated to Digital Cooperation, scheduled to be on 26 November, from 10:00-13:00 p.m. CEST. This session will reflect on the HLPDC Report recommendations, which refer to the individual topics of the report.

    In preparation for this session, the IGF community is invited to provide feedback to these Recommendations. For the project "childrens-rights.digital" chapter 3.1 "Human Rights and Human Agency“ is of particular importance.

    Comments can be submitted until 14 October 2019 at https://www.intgovforum.org/multilingual/content/report-of-the-un-secretary-general%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%8Ehigh-level-panel-on-digital-cooperation.

  • Published 27.08.19

    Invitation to the Internet Governance Forum 2019

    Stiftung Digitale Chancen

    This year's annual meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) will be hosted by the Government of Germany in Berlin under the overarching theme "One World. One Net. One Vision."

    From 25 to 29 November more than 2,000 representatives from politics, civil society, business and academia will come together at the fourteenth meeting of the IGF and discuss principles, norms and rules for the World Wide Web. The safety of children and young people and their right to participation will play an important role and be addressed in various workshops.

    This year's meeting will focus on (1) Data Governance; (2) Digital Inclusion; (3) Security, Safety, Stability & Resilience. The draft version of the IGF 2019 Schedule can be downloaded here.

    Liu Zhenmin, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, invites all Stakeholders to attend this year's meeting. The free registration is mandatory and can be done online: https://www.intgovforum.org/multilingual/content/igf-2019-registration.

  • Published 06.05.19

    Children's demands to Internet politicians

    Stiftung Digitale Chancen, Stiftung Digitale Chancen
    Ansicht: Wo sind die Stimmen der Kinder in der Netzpolitik

    Children have rights - offline and online. Could children’s right to vote contribute to the execution of their rights? What role does the Internet play in this regard? Within the framework of the re:publica, young people discussed these issues on the main stage of the Netzfest last week, along with Serina Taylor and Carla Golm from the children and youth advisory council of the German Children's Fund, the philosopher Leander Scholz, the media educator Martin Riemer, the scientist Dr. Ingrid Stapf and the childhood scientist Daniela Tews. In the end, the following demands to Internet politicians were phrased:

    Children’s demands to Internet politicians

    Participation on the Internet and in politics

    • Listen to us and let us take part - on the Internet as well!
    • Children’s interest must be taken into consideration in any decision taken in regard of the Internet.
    • We want to be allowed to vote at a younger age, for example from the age of 12, since today children are well informed through the Internet and thus able to participate in decision making.
    • We want children’s rights to be included in the constitution.
    • There must be contact points that support us in exercising our rights and help us when our rights are infringed.

    Empowerment in the Family

    • When parents educate their children, they also need to be informed about the Internet.
    • Parents must not infringe the rights of their children, such as the right to privacy.
    • Politicians should support families and take measures to enable them to use the Internet.

    Learning with and via the net

    • We need digital technology in school but we also want to learn how to use it well, self-determined and safely.
    • Children’s rights should be explained in school and should also be observed there.
    • Every child should be able to access the internet anywhere, for example in libraries and youth centres, where we can learn more about the web and its rules.

    Safety and Protection

    • We want a right to have one’s data erased on the internet and someone who ensures this right is respected.
    • A child’s photo should only be uploaded to the Internet with consent of the child, evidenced by a seal of approval tagged to the file.
    • Providers of apps and websites must ensure that our rights are respected.

    These demands were based on the voices of children and young people recorded before, during and after the session "Where are the voices of children in Internet politics" at the Netzfest 2019. They are supposed to be discussed during the re:publica and further on with political decision makers. We thank all young and adult people for their participation in the process.

    The demands as PDF for download: Children’s demands to Internet politicians

  • Published 14.03.19

    Spotlight on Digital Spaces: towards a Comprehensive Understanding of Children's Rights

    Stiftung Digitale Chancen

    The Convention on the Rights of the Child was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in November 1989. It was visionary and at the same time comprehensible, binding on the signatory states and thus influential, and it is still of great importance today. Thirty years later, for a comprehensive understanding of how the rights of children codified in the Convention are to be interpreted and implemented in view of the impact of digitisation on their everyday lives, a so-called General Comment is now being drafted for the first time. The proposal submitted by the British 5Rights Foundation with the participation of various stakeholders, including the Children's Rights.digital project, was adopted by the Committee on the Rights of the Child of the United Nations in February and will be implemented within the next approx. one and a half years.

    What is it about?

    Today Children are growing up in an increasingly interconnected environment, where digital technologies have a significant impact on their living conditions. By elaboration of a General Comment this situation, and the specific rights of the child playing a key role in it, will be examined more closely. This will also involve clarifying the roles and responsibilities of politicians, businesses, parents, educators and children themselves. The aim of the General Comment is to provide a binding interpretation of how states can fulfil their obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child in the context of digitisation of everyday life. This will set a new international standard for children's rights in the digital world.

    What are the next steps?

    In March, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child launched an online public consultation to gather comments on the direction and content of the General Comment. Contributions to the consultation can be sent as Word documents by e-mail to crc@ohchr.org by 15 May 2019; they should not exceed six pages. In parallel, preparations are underway for a global children's participation process to take place in the summer months of 2019, as well as for expert consultations from autumn 2019 onwards. A first draft of the General Comment is expected to be submitted at the beginning of 2019 for public consultation in another online consultation.

    Further possibilities for participation

    The Guidelines to respect, protect and fulfil the rights of the child in the digital environment, adopted by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe in July 2018, provide good guidance on the impact of digitisation on children's lives and the exercise of their rights. The guidelines are now also available in German language, prepared by the childrens-rights.digital project. You can download the document here or order a printed version via e-mail info@kinderrechte.digital

    The United Nations Internet Governance Forum, which will take place for the first time in Germany from 25 to 29 November, offers a further opportunity to put the issue of children's rights and digitisation at the centre of the debate. Proposals for the IGF programme can be submitted until 12 April.

    Bring in your ideas and comments as well as research results and practical experience and help to develop a contemporary understanding of rights to protection and freedom for the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child that meets the challenges of digitalisation of children's everyday lives.

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