In the Our Space video series, produced by the Internet Protection Lab, we hear concerns of civil society workers about access and affordability, cybercrime, digital weapons, mass surveillance, privacy and internet standards.
These videos reveal a broad consensus that governments have overreached themselves in the online, economic and national security domains. Governments too often use civil society engagement as a fig leaf to increase their digital reach.
Critics argue that international companies enable repressive regimes to target human rights activists and that trust in democracies is further eroded by the mass surveillance practices of the United States and its allies. The collection and retention of communications data and metadata often shows little regard for privacy and can have a chilling effect on freedom of expression. There are growing concerns about a lack of net neutrality around the world. Information monopolies erode our ability to gather information from a variety of sources so that citizens are unable to make informed decisions about their future.
To address these issues, governments and the private sector need to engage everyone involved in an open and inclusive multistakeholder process. These issues should concern us all.