IGF 2017 - Day 2 - Room XXIII - WS99 Is there a Place for Digital Civility in our Future?


The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Twelfth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Geneva, Switzerland, from 17 to 21 December 2017. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 



>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Good afternoon, everyone.  My name is Jim Prendergast and this is workshop 99.  Just wanted to go over a few sort of administrative matters for ya.  If you haven't been in one of these style rooms before the acoustics can be a little difficult.  And then when you do speak, and fair warning we will be asking you to speak at some point, just get close to the microphone.  You sort of have to hunch over at those tables.  If you do have problems feel free to move on up.  It is a pretty big room and we are a small group.  Get as close as you feel comfortable.  It is a bit of a heads up.  Fair warning, this will be an interactive session.  This will not be four people talking at you for the next 90 minutes.  We want to get the audience engaged and we want to hear from you.  We want to hear from you if you disagree with what people are saying as the whole point of this exercise.  It is not for us to walk through powerpoints and throw information at you. 

Today's session is going to have three parts.  First will be some brief presentations from our panelists and facilitators that give some background on research that will set the stage for our discussion around digital civility and then the interactive session that I talked about.  We are going to throw a couple of questions to you, but when we do that we are going to do one at a time and we are going to ask you to discuss one question at a time with your neighbor.  So now is the time to get to know the person next to you or across from you.  So that's who you are going to be working for with a couple of minutes.  And then we are going to bring it back to the larger group and set a sense of what people talked about and engage in a discussion.  Do that for two questions and talk about three programs that are under way to seek to address to some of the challenges and aspects of digital civility online. 

So with that we will get in to the beginning of the program sort of setup.  We have got four panelists with us today.  We have Clara Sommarin from UNICEF.  She specializes in child protection issues.  We have Jacqueline Beauchere.  We have Tommaso Wayne Bertolotti.  He is a bit of a Renaissance man.  And finally we have Nicholas Carlisle who is the founder and CEO of No Bully. 

One of the things that we talked about and I think it is important because there may be not one answer to this, is I'm going to ask each of the panelists to give you a sense of what they mean by digital civility so we can help orient the discussions.  So we are all headed at least this direction instead of going that direction.  So with that, Clara, you want to take us away? 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  Thank you.  Great to be here today.  So digital civility, yes, I think when it comes to children I think it is about empowering children to use the Internet and also mobile phones in a respectful way.  Ensuring that they are not harming other children but also at the same time that they have not harmed themselves.  In short for me that's digital civility. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Jacqueline. 

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  We would define as interacting with respect and compassion and leading with empathy online and making sure that all online interactions are respectful and compassionate among all individuals of all technical abilities and all ages. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Thanks.  Tommaso. 

>> TOMMASO WAYNE BERTOLOTTI:  I think the origin of the word and origin civility that means city.  Politeness is the origin the Greek city.  It is being able to live together, being compassionate together and recognize and trust each other as we would do in a regular ‑‑ in a city, in a city that is an organic issue of people living together and thriving together. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  And finally Nicholas. 

>> NICHOLAS CARLISLE:  So I come at this question through the lens of a problem which is bullying.  And through that lens I seen the lack of certain things.  And I think the two things that are most strikingly lacking in bullying and hate as they are online are first off bullying is about leaving people out and I believe that the Foundation is civility is inclusivity.  And secondly bullying is a profound lack of compassion for the other person.  So the second strong part is compassion.  Compassion and inclusivity is central to digital civility. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Thank you.  So Clara, you want to talk about some of the research that you have been doing through UNICEF that is approaching this issue? 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  You can see the different research when it comes to empowering children online.  And what are the harms and what are the risk that children face online.  And just last week we did launch our new Flagship Report, the State of the World Children 2017 which focuses on children in a digital world.  And it looks at how technology has really changed for children's lives and explores what the future holds for children when it comes to the opportunities.  As we all know that one in three Internet users today are children.  So with this it is important to look at these issues when it comes to children.  We also know that children at younger ages are accessing ICTs.  And more and more we know that they are accessing it through mobile phones.  And with this it becomes more private, personal and perhaps less supervised access than ever before.  So with this we know really that ICTs are changing childhood.  And while we know it provides so many good opportunities in terms of learning education, economic opportunities but also to be able to stay connected with families and friends we also know that it comes with risks and harm. 

And I think some of these risks and harm are very connected with digital civility as Nicholas was saying in the case of cyber bullying.  And so the issues that we look at through this research are the risk and harm.  So, for example, cyber bullying but also online sexual abuse and exploitation, online grooming and also online sexual harassment.  And through the research we have asked children what they think about the Internet.  So we have asked 18 years old about their experiences of using the Internet for the first time.  And we have also done through our voices of youth we have collected and through our youth report we have collected children's opinions.  And what we can see from this research is that 23% of the children said that they disliked violence.  And that was the thing that most upset them about the internet.  And we can see that girls are slightly a little bit more upset by the violence they experience online.  27% versus 20% of the boys.  And 33% of the children said they disliked unwanted sexual content and that was what they really most disliked about the Internet.  And here it was actually 33% of the girls disliked this and 32% of the boys.  You don't see a gender difference.  We also see that 65% of the girls and 40% of the boys strongly agree that they would be worried if they received sexual comments or requests over the Internet.  And 8 out of 10 believe young people are in danger of sexual abuse and being taken advantage of online.  This really shows that young people are quite concerned about this.  And we can see that there is some regional differences where, for example, young people in low and middle income countries are more upset as compared to young people in high income countries. 

So, for example, in low and middle income countries 42% of the children said that they were upset about things online versus only 16% in high income countries.  And it is interesting to see that five out of ten children actually think that friends participate in risky behavior online.  And six out of ten children do think that it is very important to meet with new people online.  And ‑‑ but only 36% of those children think that they can tell people are lying about who they are online. 

So this is quite worrying when we have six out of ten young children thinking it is important to know new people, but only 36% think that they can tell who people are online.  And finally the research shows that while, you know, in some cultures these can depend on culture context.  In some context children do tend to turn to the parents and teachers, but in most context we know that less turn to their friends if they are upset online.  But only less than half, 44% strongly agree that they know how to help a friend facing online risk.  And this points to children needing help in terms of dealing with online risk.  And some of these risks are related to digital civility such as cyber bullying.  This is some of the research that UNICEF has been looking at in recent years. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Thanks.  Jacqueline, you want to talk us through a little bit about what Microsoft has been up to? 

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  I would like to share some results with a specific research that we did that we released in International Safer Internet Day this February.  And it was geared towards digital civility.  It was called civility safety and online interactions.  So this data they were fielded in June of 2016 and we have repeated this research and we will be releasing it in 23 countries next International Safer Internet Day on February the 6th of 2018.  So this particular study focuses on teens and adults, teens ages 13 to 14, adults ages 18 to 74 in 14 different countries.  And we ask them about their lifetime exposure to 17 different online risks.  We then took those 17 risks.  And we grouped them in to four specific categories.  So we are talking about behavioral risks, sexual risks, reputational risks and what we call personal and intrinsic risk.  But for the most part people said that they find the Internet to be a rather civil place.  But they were concerned about some future risks, particularly with respect to unwanted contact, harassment, and damage to both their personal and their professional reputations. 

So of the more than 7,000 people that we spoke with 65%, so almost two‑thirds said that they reported being a victim of at least one form of online risk or one form of online abuse.  And the most overwhelming chief concern and chief risk that they were exposed to was unwanted contact.  So I think this goes in relation to some of the statistics and the research findings that Clara also shared.  So unwanted contact was the chief concern.  43% of those surveyed said that this was their main problem followed by being treated meanly and unwanted sex messages and online harassment. 

Now when we ask the individual respondents to look at their own position and what they have been exposed to as well as their friends and their family in their immediate social circle, that 65% figure jumped to 78%.  78% had been exposed to one risk online.  They will certainly share what have happened to friends and family.  We included that larger bucket as well. 

Just a couple more high level statistics.  The consequences are very real and quite severe.  We found that 43% of respondents said they lost trust in other people online.  30% said that they lost trust in other people offline.  They became stressed.  They became depressed.  They lost a friend.  They lost sleep.  They quit their job and even 5% said that they contemplated suicide all as a result of ‑‑ of a bad instance and bad happening online. 

Unfortunately we also see this bear out in lots of different research.  What drives people to action is something bad happening to them.  So as a result of this experience online whether it was abuse or some exposure to some risks more than four in ten said that they changed their privacy settings on their social media accounts and the same percentage it was 42% said that they cut down on the amount of personal information that they shared with others. 

So finally, this one finding was a particular concern, particularly there is a lot of folks in this room who specialize in education and awareness raising about online risks.  And this research showed that 62% of the individuals surveyed did not know or they were unsure about where to go for help once they ‑‑ that they had encountered some online risk. 

I would like to just draw some quick distinctions between the age groups that we surveyed and then the gender groups that we surveyed.  So, for instance, with adults.  Adults had a slightly higher incidence of online risk exposure.  And they also experienced greater exposure to sexual risks.  The youth had more optimism about the outlook for their personal safety, but by the same token they were more concerned about future online risks.  Again the unwanted contact, the harassment and damage to reputation.  And the youth they also had a greater likelihood to confront or retaliate against the person who was badgering them in some way or harassing them online.  And they were also less confident and they shared less knowledge about where to go and find some help in dealing with one of those online risks. 

Then finally in terms of males and females the men expected to be online and have even more interactions in the future.  They were also like the youth, they had a greater likelihood of retaliating against or going after the person who was responsible for their online risk.  And then the females, something that was unique to them was they had the greater propensity for the loss of trust in others both online and offline.  And the females were the ones who have lost sleep and become more stressed because of this online exposure. 

If you would like more information you can go to microsoft.com/digital civility.  All the research in the entire campaign is located there and watch that space for safer Internet day.  We will release another batch again.  Thank you. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Thanks, Jacqueline.  Tommaso, you want to lend your perspective on it? 

>> TOMMASO WAYNE BERTOLOTTI:  I connect right away to something that Jacqueline said as the comment perceived was unwanted contact.  It made me think about it.  As if the greatest pleasure is one we derive from wanted contact.  That's why we are on Facebook all the time.  We are on Twitter.  And if you think of your experience on Internet, you get the most pleasure, the most endorphin running through the system once you get some positive interaction, for example, on social media.  I go back to what I was introducing before, the Latin root of civility.  Sitting in Greek culture.  And actually Aristotle told in his politics that a man that cannot ‑‑ doesn't need other people, either a God or an animal, but in any case there is no place for him in the city.  So I ‑‑ and he also famously defined the human beings as only political and social animal.  We have this root of the Civitus and civility.  Being civil it is not a choice.  Maybe we might not feel like doing it but it is something we have to do in order to live in a society we all benefit from.  So with my question how do we achieve this civility and what philosophical concepts may help us frame this civility. 

So one idea is recognition.  So recognize each other as similar.  And at the same time different for myself.  Other human beings are similar to me and different from me at the same time.  It is a big problem of the other.  And it is a problem, we have everyday confrontations and all the more we have them in ‑‑ we have this problem in online confrontation because we do not see the other person most frequently.  So we do not see his or her reaction.  We don't see expressions.  We do not have immediate clues to understand their state of mind.  And at the same time we have another issue and it is the issue of trust.  So have a city, something in which to be a civil or a police in which to be polite we have to trust each other.  It is a mutually enforcing system.  We trust other citizens.  So we are civil.  And we live together.  And at the same time the fact of living together with them makes them trust them and makes the whole system flourish.  So what's interesting is that trust is a relationship that is based in time.  Trust is something that goes from the past in to the future.  When you trust something, something is proven reliable to you.  So, for instance, you trust your car because it is a reliable car.  It is proven reliable in the past.  And so you expect the car to be reliable in the future.  A friend, a friend you trust.  A reliable friend is a friend that's proven reliable in the past.  So you know you can expect the friend to be trustworthy in the future  when you don't have the time to make this appraisal.  You have to buy a new car.  The brand will make up for the time you haven't had to experience that particular product.  So you buy a Ford or a Nissan or a Fiat because you think that the brand means reliability.  And it gives something to expect in the future. 

So online, what are signs that we can negotiate online?  And what signs do we use to ‑‑ we try to pick up in ‑‑ when exchanging with other people to ‑‑ and if we do this explicitly or implicitly maybe we don't realize we are doing this.  We are looking for signs.  What signs are you using to understand if someone else is reliable or not.  But also what signs are you given, what signs are you displaying, what signs are you putting online to advertise yourself as reliable.  And here we see the change of scenario, what we had before like the social network era.  We had like Forums and chat boards and there was the Avatar.  This ‑‑ I mean when I was a teenager we tried to get the spookiest Avatar as possible.  And so now today it is different.  On social networks we have our name and surname.  We try to advertise ourselves as reliable.  And conclusive remark the importance of ritual. 

So civility is ‑‑ it is always often ‑‑ it is often a matter of rituals.  When you say please, when you say thank you, sometimes you don't mean it.  Someone ‑‑ sometimes the situation doesn't really require it.  But it is a ritual that grants a positive environment.  So would you do that?  Would you do the same online or maybe sometimes you haven't done the same online?  And can I end on a provocative note?  But sometimes I think that since this discourse on online civility it is becoming something more and more, we are more and more aware of.  I think that sometimes the tendency could be inverted. 

Now we behave online and we ask ourselves would that be okay in real life.  Would I be polite in real life?  And I always have the thought or the hope that we might get to something opposite like Internet becoming a sandbox of civility.  You do something in real life and say would that be okay online.  Would I come across as a bully online and just inverse the model and the frame?  Thank you. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Thanks.  Nicholas, you want to wrap this section up? 

>> NICHOLAS CARLISLE:  Thank you.  I loved your provacative question.  That's an inspiring goal for us to be working towards.  There's a writer that I love called Neil Gamon.  You may know him from his science fiction and he writes about stories.  Here is what he has to say.  Stories, teach us how the world is put together and the rule of living in their world.  Teach us how the world is put together and the rules of living in the world.  We are all governed by stories whether we are aware of them or not.  And we are all governed by stories of online, what it means to be online and stories about what the Internet is.  What I wanted to do with you today was to talk partly about the reality of online bullying for youth but also about the stories that we tell about it and they are very different. 

So I run a non‑profit or U.S. based called No Bully.  Over the last decade we have had increasing request, people saying give us help around online bullying.  And if you look at the stats of online bullying what we see about it, we know from the great reports, UNICEF has done and what the health organization has done, one‑third of adolescents around the world are the target of bullying.  Roughly half of those experience that bullying in the form of online bullying.  So the kids who are bullied online often are that ‑‑ that start the offline and/or starts online and moves offline.  A lot of fluidity between offline and online.  So the numbers are significant.  And the effects can range just like child abuse can from seemingly short‑lived to devastating the lives of children as they start to have suicidal thoughts and the view that life is not worth living.  So cyber bullying is a huge problem and a significant problem. 

On the back of that are the stories that we tell about the Internet.  I'm thinking of a survey that AT&T did last year in the United States.  And what they found was it replicates a lot of what you are finding at Microsoft, too, is that 41% of the teens that they interviewed said that they considered the Internet was a mean place.  This question of trust is something that I have heard again and again in all the sessions that I have been to today.  Trust is a reality.  But it also comes from a story that we tell ourselves about what is likely to happen.  And whether this place is ‑‑ online place is safe.  I'm really concerned about the youth that are the target of cyber bullying.  I'm also really concerned about what's happening to the Internet and the culture that is emerging in the Internet.  And it starts to go in to a downward spiral.  As I trust less, I'm less willing to be cooperative with you. 

I start to get hyper vigilant and I start to watch for are you attacking me.  Is your intention good or is it hostile.  Are you out to get me.  Is there even a place for me online.  That all starts to be given genesis by the stories that we tell.  So what we see from the adults that you see in your surveys they are starting to go down two routes.  You start to withdraw from online contact.  And that's really concerning because the original vision if you look to the framers of the Internet was this was an inclusive place.  Everyone gets to belong.  So yes, I can pull back and my friends can pull back but we no longer then have an inclusive Internet.  Or I can start to feel that I'm under attack in the Internet and get very hyper vigilant.  And I start to contribute to this downward spiral of perceiving you as aggressive to me.  So I'm going to fight back against you.  And then we get the verbal wars that we see, the spats that we see happening across the Internet.  

Over time there have been some wonderful shared spaces.  There have been the comments and the grazing lands across the world that people are used to for their sustenance.  In recent years we have started to talk about the tragedy of the commons.  These shared spaces that are getting degraded and are no longer sustaining them because people are exploiting them.  And when we talk today about digital civility my perception of the Internet is a risk of becoming that tragedy of the commons.  Unless we start to insist on digital civility and unless we start to teach people and inspire them to be that way online we are at risk of damaging this shared space.  And that is why I believe the digital civility is so important. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Great.  Thanks, everyone.  So we are going to move in to as I warned you the interactive part of this.  You know, we have done some of these panels together in the past.  And we don't like as much as anybody seeing eight people up there talking to you for 90 minutes.  That's why we do this.  What we want you to do as I mentioned we want you to talk to your neighbor about one question for about two minutes.  And then when you are done with that we are going to open it up and have a discussion.  We want to hear about what you talked about and some reactions from up here.  But let's get a discussion going back and forth, table to table, however it goes.  We want this to be more about you than it is about us. 

I think as I mentioned earlier, if you disagree with something you have heard or you disagree with something that you will hear, let's talk about it.  We have some answers but they may not be right.  And we don't have all the answers.  We haven't gotten to the question and we have one.  Go ahead.  So you can help ‑‑ let us know who you are and where you are from.

>> PARTICIPANT:  My name is Marla Fisher.  I am running a small initiative called Game Overhead.  And I have a bit of a problem with I don't know exactly what the definition of cyber bullying is that you are using.  The numbers are incredibly overblown at least in the statistics that we use in Europe.  We have these 30% statistics in Austria, for example, until they noticed that mixed up a couple of numbers and after they cleared out the stack in the end was rather 10% and fixed offline and online bullying.  We deal with really discriminatory cases.  Cases of rape and death threats.  When we are confronted constantly with these kind of numbers it is making our work quite difficult because it is mixing sensitivities in together with serious cases that demand legal action.  And I have a bit of a problem.  That's why I would like to know what exactly the definition of cyber bullying is when you talk about cyber bullying because otherwise I think we are comparing apples and oranges. 

>> NICHOLAS CARLISLE:  The surveys around cyber bullying as you are noting are varied around the world.  Some surveys put it down as low as 10% and some countries it seems to get 30 or 40%.  And the definitions also there is some fight and dispute amongst, especially the academics over what exactly it is.  Landed a cluster of different behaviors that together constitute cyber bullying from direct threats and humiliations and putdowns through text and direct messaging to creating fake websites and impersonating people to posting private materials and images about people.  And I'm thinking of how when sexing goes wrong those images are posted online.  So there is a broad cluster of behaviors that tend to be used in the surveys to get those results of somewhere between 10 or 20% of the kids being targeted. 

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  Speaking specifically to the research that I just mentioned that we released, we asked about cyber bullying and we asked about online harassment.  And we asked about being treated meanly.  So I'm not necessarily going to clump those all together but cyber bullying, our specific definition was when the Internet cell phones or other devices are used to send or post text or images intended to hurt, embarrass or intimidate another person.  And the cyber bullying when people were asked for themselves did this happen to you it was only 9%.  When we asked about friends and families the number went up to 24%.  The differentiation with definition of harassment that was threats or other offensive behavior not sexual solicitation.  And there the statistics for the individuals were 17%, and then for individuals, friends and family, 32%.  So just to give you an idea of some of our definitions and some of our percentages as well.  13 to 17 for teens.  And adults 18 to 74.  And that's a combination of both of those demographics. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Can I ask that you use the microphone because we have online participants as well? 

>> PARTICIPANT:  Yes, I want to ask a question of clarification.  If you have content that has been laminated, for example, somebody Googled pepper plate and then you see pepper plate being beheaded and blood spreading all over, how would that fall within your definition?  I'm sorry to give a cartoon character with a brand but ‑‑


>> PARTICIPANT:  Is this something that we are seeing? 

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  Sure.  And if it is the cartoon character's body and human head attached to it that's something different.  If it is a cartoon character we are probably not going to do a whole lot with that. 

>> PARTICIPANT:  No, I'm saying for your survey the child would define that as ‑‑

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  I don't know what the child would define that as.  We are asking them if they have been exposed to any of those kinds of things.  Something tied with gore or violence, that didn't fit in to one of these definitions.  Excuse me, one more second.  We did have a category for extremism and terrorist recruiting, but that's a little bit different than what you are suggesting. 

>> PARTICIPANT:  Yeah, I'm sorry.  My name is Dorothy Gordon. 

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  Thank you, Dorothy, for your question. 

>> PARTICIPANT:  Hi.  Thank you.  My name is Solidad and I am previously working with the State Department under the Obama Administration.  And I have worked with the ITU on digital gender equality.  And I actually like some clarification on a couple of different points.  On the online bullying, were there questions asked about do you bully.  And have you ever committed these sorts of offenses in a way that obviously it was probably diplomatic.  And also who were the statistics in terms of women and girls and women and girls of color?  And were they treated to bullying at higher rates than other groups of people?  And then finally, sorry, there was statistics given about children being more upset from lower income countries.  And I'm sort of trying to grasp what was the definition of being upset.  And what was the hypothesis as to why ‑‑ were the definitions different for different people in different countries.  And maybe what caused that disparity between the people from the various income groups.  Sorry.  Lots to ask there. 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  Yeah.  So maybe I leave the definition of cyber bullying and bullying to all of you.  We in UNICEF, we are also supporting surveys right now on bullying in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals.  And I think for us cyber bullying is sending hurtful messages and posting them online.  Showing hurtful images without permission through texting social media and other online channels.  This is the definition that WHO used in a school‑based health survey.  We have also kind of adopted that definition because we are working with ten agencies including the World Bank, UNWOMEN, other UN agencies on a package on what are the effective strategies to address violence against children.  It is called inspired.  And some of you might have heard of it.  So in our case we have actually not in those surveys where we are supporting surveys we are also supporting other surveys that we look at violence against children and bullying and how many people are bullying, but I don't have that data with me right now. 

In terms of the data that I presented that children in low and middle income countries seem to be more upset than in high income countries, the definition was the same.  The question was the same.  There was an opinion pole of actually 18 years old and retrospectively what were their perception of using the Internet for the first time.  So the questions were the same.  I do think it has ‑‑ it could have to do with ‑‑ we looked at a wide range of countries.  It could have to do with in some countries where perhaps children are not online as much.  For example, we had countries such as Madagascar, and we looked at Brazil, El Salvador and Guatemala.  They saw this type of content.  That children in high income countries have been perhaps using Internet more.  And it is ‑‑

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  It would be fair to say maybe in the higher income countries the behavior had been normalized or they have seen it more.  And they were afraid or if they were intimidated or if they were threatened that would all fall under the word upset? 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  Yes.  It was a very wide definition.  It was an opinion poll. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  We are going to throw the first question.  Okay.  All right.  So I'm going to edit it on the fly here and hopefully not catch too much grief.  So the first question we have here is a little bit of a warmup one.  And it is pretty straightforward I think.  Is the Internet a safe and respectful place?  And why.  It is not a yes or no question.  So we want you to grab somebody at your table, make a new friend.  Talk it over for about two minutes and then we want to hear what you said just from a Plenary style session.  Thanks a lot. 


>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  And why.  Is it a safe and respectful place and why.  Explain your work.  All right.  I don't want to use the hammer.  That's not very civil if I start banging this hammer.  I know ‑‑ so what did we hear?  What did we say?  What did we think?  I know we have got some online folks that are chatting in the online session as well.  We will go to the online participants first since they are usually neglected in these situations.  And it will give all of you the opportunity to say what you prepared because if you don't hit the button I am going to point to you. 

>> PARTICIPANT:  Okay.  Ariel says just like the real world the Internet can be safe and respectful.  We need to be educated and taught how to be safe and civil online as well as in real life.

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  There are no right or wrong answers here.  We are very much interested in what everyone has to say.  Larry? 

>> PANELIST:  The question is like saying is Geneva safe.  And so far I have had a really safe experience in Geneva, but I am quite certain there are crimes committed in this city that happen to people because of bad luck or they are wandering in to areas that are perhaps a higher risk than others or because they are behaving in such a way that they are making themselves more vulnerable.  Things of that nature.  Large gold chains.  With diamonds from them.  I am not ‑‑ hardly.  Hardly.  You might ‑‑ you might be ostracized.  And so I think it is really ‑‑ it depends tremendously.  The other concept that we talked about a minute ago is that if you think about the real world, if I think about my world, I encounter ‑‑ I work at home.  On a given day I might interact with two, three, four, ten people.  Online I might interact with 10, 20, even a thousand people.  If I were to watch my Twitter feed for an hour, a thousand people would be interacting with me.  Given that number of people I probably more likely to have the whole variety of experiences ranging from really positive to really negative.  So that's a long way of saying I don't have a clue how to answer your question.  I mean it is and it isn't. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Okay.  Michael.

>> PANELIST:  I will just say ours similar follows builds on that.  We came to the conclusion that it depends what neighborhood you hang out in.  So ‑‑ and if you are online the world reflects your offline world.  In other words, it is built around the same core of people, right, then, you know, it could end up to be a very safe and respectful place.  Depending on the neighborhood that you ‑‑ and vice versa.  That some of those things are going to cross in and cross out.  One thought that also people can neighborhood jump on the Internet much better than they can in a physical world.  They can come from other neighborhoods maybe trying to do you harm in some other kind of way, try to solicit you or something.  There can be crossing over in to communities in different kinds of ways in the online world.  So I mean that was just, I think, a thought that we had.  And so I don't know how ‑‑ how true that is in the sense that, you know, if you lived, for example, in the high crime neighborhood does that get replicated in your neighborhood on the Internet.  Not sure about that.  But I think that was sort of our ‑‑ so it can be very respectful and safe.  And then the other question what does safety mean, too.  Because there was an issue, you know, for example, in many ways the online world can be much safer than the physical world, right?  You are not going to get run over by a truck in the online world.  Someone can't, you know, physically punch you through the screen.  So there is ‑‑ there is some protections here.  On the other hand, as Jacqueline's research indicates those things that you experience do come back in the offline world, too.  It is not an easy answered question. 


>> PANELIST:  Hi.  Actually we also agree that for safe parties, offline libraries are safe.  In terms if we put those security resources and those settings you have already done some measurements it would be totally fine.  But when we talk about ‑‑ whether it was a respectful state or not we have some point on the area because somehow on the Internet we would hide behind the screens.  Unless you Facetime, you can't recognize the other.  You can't really build a sense of like empathy in this sense.  And you don't know whether your speech is hateful or the others is very insulting in this term.  So we say especially ‑‑ we don't think it is really respectful in terms of recognizing their facial expression in this sense. 

>> TOMMASO WAYNE BERTOLOTTI:  Thank you, David.  You seem to link the fact that it is not necessarily more respectful than ‑‑ it is not a respectful place because it is easier to get misunderstood.  So like what is it ‑‑ like when you say that you do not ‑‑ you cannot see the reaction of the other person, so maybe it is perceived to be disrespectful.  So maybe you say ‑‑ it is more easier that the conversation becomes disrespectful because the ‑‑ maybe you don't mean it but the other person will understand it as disrespectful and things will maybe escalate or ‑‑ I mean is this what you are thinking or not? 

>> Not really. 


>> PANELIST:  Somehow in person, in face‑to‑face interaction we can note how others feel.  Online library is normally just not verbal, but type the words online.  So you don't know the other feelings in terms of like in this sense.  So you say in this way.  Yeah.  It makes sense. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Anyone else?  Oh, sorry. 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  Yes.  Building a little bit on what you said, in fact, that is a very subjective question.  And the response is going to be very different for every child.  If you look a little at transactional analysis we have the free child.  We have the adapted child.  And I think for a free child who is comfortable in the way they are or a free adult then they have enough resilience to see it as a safe place, a respectful place.  But someone who is adapted to one environment and hasn't yet adapted to this environment and how you feel from one day to the other.  I think there is absolutely no answer because it is so subjective.  It can't be either.  It has to be different from the point of view of everyone.

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  So we designed the perfect stumper question to start off with.  So we will move to the second question.  Maybe this one can be answered.  And even if it can't, we want to hear your thoughts on why.  How do we restore digital civility to the Internet?  We only have 35 minutes left. 


>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  And you get two minutes.  Once again how do we restore digital civility to the Internet. 


>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  All right.  Time is up.  Two minutes goes by pretty quick, especially when we have some other stuff we want to cover.  So who wants to take this one first?  Anyone want to ‑‑ sure go ahead. 

>> PARTICIPANT:  Okay.  Hi.  My name is Jinai.  I am a law student from Brazil and I am part of UK IGF.  I am researching child online protection.  Congratulations.  We think it is really important when we talk about restore digital civility, did you ever have digital civility, because I mean why we have been sharing this is that Internet for their reflection of our society.  We have some guidances.  And we talk about what is education and what it is like to be polite and what it is to respect someone.  Do you have this guidance in the Internet.  What are the limits that children can go.  Is it okay to share a photograph of your ‑‑ it is okay.  It is okay to share a photograph of your colleague or it is okay to share photographs of your parents without asking them.  And what's the limits on the communication.  And when we also talk about being a safe place, it is really important to say that, for example, in Brazil we are still walking slow steps and we come to laws on the Internet.  And we try to compare our society with Internet, both our place that we can call safe or not depends on where you are.  But I think the biggest difference like in Brazil we talk about safer and we say we have the law to protect me.  But we do not have the law to protect us on the Internet.  So that's a point that I think we should address on this. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Great.  Thanks.  We have got an online question.

>> REMOTE MODERATOR:  There are two comments.  First one is from Erin.  We need to hold ourselves to the same standards online as we do in the real world.  It is integrity and honesty and presenting ourselves online.  The other one is from Jacob.  I am not sure it is possible to get to the point of digital civility.  There never really was digital civility online.  It will be hard to make it happen online when there are people from tons of different backgrounds who are receiving different dialogue about being respectful to others. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Great.  Thank you.  Anybody else in the room?  Michael. 

>> PARTICIPANT:  Yes.  We ‑‑ I just point out so when we actually did some a survey with Microsoft earlier this year and what we found was that 41% of the young people 13 to 17‑year‑olds turned to each other for help online before they turn to their parents.  And that seems one of the ways to get civility back online is by teaching young people to support each other.  Back to your analogy of a city that's what happens in a city.  Something happens, the community gathers around and they support it.  You get lost and somebody knows how to point you in the right direction.  I mean there are certain elements that maybe needed to introduced and by building up the resistance and resilience of people and the ability to help other people helps them be better citizens online.  And that's a lost opportunity that we have not nearly deeply explored enough. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Great point, Michael.  We are going to turn this question back on ourselves here.  I'm sorry.  Go ahead. 

>> PANELIST:  I wanted to point out with these wide definitions I don't think the Internet ever got safe space.  Rotten.com was registered in 1995.  All right.  These kind of scare pieces and attitudes have been there.  The open spaces on the Internet always these kind of attitudes and behaviors.  My first experiences were in the AOL Instant Messenger and public forums in probably '96ish.  And you had the same experiences back then.  And I think we also always had safe spaces where you could prevent that from happening.  Usually by your own circles of friends.  So these safe spaces there usually was a possibility to have these.  And this is a similar situation right now.  So when we talk about digital civility I think No. 1 we are talking about these public spaces on how to enable them.  I think in personal conversations we still behave quite differently. 

The second point is that the approach we are using or the approach that we are suggesting would be a digital collage or civil collage to speak up in the face of negative attitudes and behavior and to use counter speeches approaches.  If there is appropriate behavior to speak up and try to counter balance it with positive examples or to negate the negative speech that was raised in the first place. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Larry, do a quick response and then a new speaker ‑‑

>> PARTICIPANT:  With all due respect of history having gone online in 1999, if my friend Vint Cerf, back then the Internet was more a closed community and had greater civility.  And that brings up the question as that as the community expands the cities get larger typically crime gets bigger.  Historically not always.  Small towns historically have been safer than big cities.  Homogeneous communities seem to have more civility.  On the Internet there is a great sense of other.  There are people out there who are different than us.  And there is an undeserved license that people feel they have to be less civil to people who are other.  So I think if we go back far enough on the Internet we can, in fact, find a community with great disability.  But on the other hand, we will never go back there.  Going forward too seems we need to do some of the things that real cities are doing which is to create that sense of citizenship and acceptance of the fact, regardless they are the same color, sexual orientation or the same as you, possibly even admiration and comradeship.


>> PARTICIPANT:  Hi Elizabeth.  What I think is interesting is that we just need to go back to some of the basics, some of the things that we seen in the past.  One of the things that we are working on at the Council of Europe and we are matching that digital domains.  They are looking at values, skills, the knowledge and the As and attitudes.  These are not any different.  This is not something that's new, that's brilliant and shiny.  We just need to get back to a lot of the basics.  Somebody had mentioned earlier about when we are in a city and that you stop and help someone.  Not today.  Not always.  We can look at the case of the bystander effect in the legal cases where the woman was stabbed and how many times because somebody thought that somebody else was going to do something.  This is a true reflection of our society today.  There is a ‑‑ a majority of the time people are respectful and it is a safe place. 

But the problem is that we are seeing so many people with authority being able to be disrespectful and that it trickles down.  So we are having a massive problem I feel.  And I think that if we go back to some of the basics including parents teaching their children to be kind, it would leave you with a child, that the child that you handed something to them you would tell them to say please, we would prompt them.  We don't prompt our children online.  They just go and do. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Great.  Thanks.  So Tommaso is going to flip the question on the panelists and take us through some of the programs that are in play that try to address some of these issues. 

>> TOMMASO WAYNE BERTOLOTTI:  I was wondering when I was listening to your answers and questions and comments, so it seems that if on the one hand that we think the Internet is generally a safe and respectful or just as real life, we were more hesitant about digital civility.  Many of us wondered if it has ever been there and we all agreed that this ‑‑ the digital civility is something that should be ‑‑ we aspire to.  Something that should be achieved.  And we might achieve it just by enforcement.  We refer to the law.  We have punishment if we are not civil, but we might also achieve it by education which is what we do normally in real life.  We are polite because we think we have to be polite and not because we are going to get slapped if we are not polite. 

And if on the one hand usually we think about the virtue and as the virtue is something that informs and inspires direction this is not the unique view and, for instance, Aristotle, and other schools of thought like Buddhism believe that you can reach virtue through practice.  Practice might maybe get you to virtue.  And so maybe the campaigns that you brought on have something to do with achieving virtue through practice. 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  I wanted to come back to the report that UNICEF launched last week and the report sets out six policy areas to harness the power of ICTs for the most disadvantaged children  and protect the most vulnerable.  And you can see the different recommendations here.  It is about ensuring that all children have affordable access to high quality online resources.  The second recommendation I think it is very important for the discussion we are having today, protecting children from harm online.  But also exposure to unsuitable materials.  The third is safeguarding children's privacy and identities online.  And the fourth again is important for our discussion today.  It is about teaching children digital literacy.  And we should say digital civility.  Keep children informed, engaged, and safe online.  And I hear ‑‑ here I think the report quite clearly also states that, you know, we as adults we are actually role models for children.  And we should make sure that our own behavior also is respectful, compassionate, empathetic since we know our behavior is mirrored in other children's behavior.  And the fifth is about leveraging the power of the private sector.  And sixth is putting children at the center of the digital policy. 

For those of you who know UNICEF we work in over 150 countries in the world and in the past couple of years we have 35 plus countries where we are working on research, policy advocacy and programs with Governments, Civil Society and the private sector to implement a coordinated response to child online protection issues.  And this is very much in line with the we protect model national response.  And we are kind of focusing on four areas.  So it is legal and policy reform, capacity building and key stakeholders, law enforcement, child protection services.  Reporting mechanisms for children and parents and the public and private ICT sector. 

And another area is about the data collection, research, monitoring and evaluation of policies and programs because we do recognize that without the research and understanding how children use ICTs we won't have the right policy and program response.  But the third area here is what we are talking about today, is awareness raising and capacity building on children, parents and teachers on risks, digital skills and responsible behavior online.  But also where children can actually report incidents of online violence when they experience it.  And with this new report we have just launched a new campaign.  In June 2016 we did launch the end violence online campaign where we had a targeted campaign to less than 13 to 17 years old called reply for all.  It was about educating adolescents and empowering them to protect themselves and their peers. 

One of you mentioned this in the audience, we should work with people on how they can talk to their peers and be a best buddy to the peer.  Now I just wanted to show you the latest campaign.  It is called think before you click.  It is again a digital youth activation campaign with the same objective as the reply for all.  And we are going to show three spots.

>> Yes, you had a comment? 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  Maybe just the last part.  Just one more. 

>> PARTICIPANT:  My colleague who had to leave who I was interacting with he is from the Internet Foundation, and they take down images working with content providers.  So it is kind of a self‑regulating mechanism.  And we were discussing the fact that if you look at the platform like What's Up, which is encrypted end to end, you are not able to take action in the same way.  And in Developing Countries what are we seeing?  Are implementation of key basics we see that there is a lot of predators who encourage people who get very small kids to perform sexual acts and then upload videos for payment.  And these are then circulating very, very freely.  How do you address the problem like that?  I didn't see it being addressed in this kind of video to help kids.  So I was just thinking that we may have a gap that we have to figure how to help them with that. 

>> CLARA SOMMARIN:  That's a very good point.  I do think that the last video actually tried to capture some of that.  It is kind of tracing through the ‑‑ you can trace where the children  are.  But yes and in many of the countries where we work we have seen that children are being Livestreamed online but also are suffering from child sexual abuse material.  It is true.  We didn't go in to that type of online risk so much today because we are speaking a little bit more about digital civility.  I do think for UNICEF at least it is really about working with law enforcement, working with prosecutors, working with judges but also the child protection system in the countries to make sure that you know we identify those children.  And we work with social workers to ensure that the children who have fallen victims received adequate support.  It is about working with children and parents. 

In some of these countries but right now doing a study in one of the countries where Livestreaming of child sexual abuse it seems to be quite common.  And ‑‑ but you know many times it is about the parents not understanding the risk that they expose the children to and even being facilitated by the parents.  And I think we are seeing this in more and more countries.  It is a much broader approach.  I don't think it is enough to work with the children in educating them.  It is about other stakeholders and the Government to take action in Civil Society. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Any platform responsibility?  Any responsibility of the platform? 

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  I will take that.  I just wanted to correct one thing that you said which was about a self‑regulatory environment.  This is very much a regulated environment.  We in the United States ‑‑ Internet Watch Foundation.  We work with them as well.  But in the United States it is regulated.  We have specific statutes on the books that when we are made aware on our platforms that child sexual exploitation and abuse imagery exists we have an obligation to take it down and report it to the U.S. National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.  And that organization works with law enforcement around the world to make sure that they are doing what they can to rescue children and prevent further abuse and so forth. 

So that's just one thing I wanted to note that it is a regulated environment as well.  And then secondly, Clara mentioned this in her initial remarks but I want to underscore the we protect global alliance to end child exploitation online.  UNICEF and Microsoft and others are members of the board there.  And that's run by the British Government but it is a multi‑stakeholder approach to child exploitation and abuse online.  If we go to weprotect.org you will see the charter and it covers a multi‑stakeholder approach from law enforcement to Government to industry and Civil Society and international organizations including UNICEF. 

In addition to the research that I presented we wanted to give a little more of a holistic approach to our campaign for digital civility which we launched about a year ago.  So we did ‑‑ we compiled what call our digital civil index for each of the 14 countries and an index across all 14 countries.  And it is basically based on the exposure of people in that country to the level of risk. 

As I said in my opening remarks about the research 65% of the people across the 7,000 plus that we talk to in this survey said that they had been exposed to some form of risk.  So if we could go to the next slide, this is the DCI based on each country.  So it works kind of like a golf score.  If you have a higher level of exposure to risk you are going to have a lower index and so on and so forth.  So it is perceived that you have a higher level of civility with a lower index.  A lower exposure to risk.  So it is the UK, Australia and the U.S. that are on the perceived level of being more civil where Russia, Mexico and South Africa are perceived to be at a higher level of risk and thus a less level of perceived civility. 

If we could go to the next slide, we can dwell on that slide forever but we won't.  In addition to the research, in addition to the digital civility index we launched what call our digital civility challenge.  And I will go in to that in a second.  And we compiled a number of academics and NGO leads and others around the globe in what we call our voices for digital civility.  When Microsoft put this out there our aim was that others would take up the notion of digital civility and put together their own projects and programs and initiatives.  Even if we just start to hear that phrase and that notion of digital civility we hope to populate and get that out there.  And we put together a series of best practices, new startup companies what they can be doing to encourage digital civility and better interactions online.  Also some guidance for Civil Society members and educators and school officials and so forth. 

And finally, the last slide here is what we call our digital civility challenge.  We asked people on social media using the hashtags challenge for civility.  And I'm for civility, to basically pledge to live by four basic tenants.  In short living the golden rule and treating others like you would like to be treated.  By no means thwarting any kind of conversation or dialogue, understand and be open to other perspectives and then pause before replying.  Don't just come out and Spam someone, don't just come out and flame someone but take that minute and see like in the UNICEF videos is that really something that you want to send. 

And then finally if it is safe and prudent to do so and this goes to the bullying place to stand up for one's self online and stand up for others online.  I encourage you to go to microsoft.com and look for International Safer Internet Day and some additional risks.  I wish the lady from the state department was still here because we are adding three risks to the 18 that we have already which is including misogamy.  Thank you for your time today. 

>> (Off microphone). 

>> NICHOLAS CARLISLE:  And we ‑‑ for the last year I have been talking to the tech companies around the world, academic researchers, parents, kids about online bullying.  And coming together to create a collaborative campaign around it.  And I'm very excited to share with you tonight that campaign.  It is called the Power of Zero.  Our next slide.  So and what we did is we started to look around was try and get at systemic causes of this that we could influence.  And many systemic causes for bullying, by the continuum of violence but what could we actually make a difference around. 

Next slide.  And as we spoke to researchers and I'm thinking now Stefan in the European Union, she was pointing us younger.  She was making the point children get online from birth and she was making the point that they don't really have the skills and they are not really onboarded in a successful way.  They start to experiment.  They start to select their own Youtube videos and they find their own way around.  That's a skill set that is pretty much self‑taught. 

In terms of their knowledge, they have very little understanding what the Internet is.  If you ask a kid many of them will say it is entertainment.  That translates in to drama in the teen years.  What's going on is just drama.  Online bullying is drama.  It is the same mindset and she is also uncovering in younger kids that they don't really get taught by their parents about attitudes.  So that masses, if you are not taught about attitudes or digital civility really you start to mimic what's out there.  You just copy what other kids are doing.  So you don't learn to be an ali and to take the moral courage to step in.  You don't learn the courage to hold back and pause rather than flaming someone back. 

Also if you go to the next slide, starting to really dive down in to what is bullying.  It is really an important question.  What is bullying.  What's it really about.  In our heart bullying is really about power.  It is about power over.  It is about the abuse of power.  And power has become a dirty word.  But power exists in all of our relationships as closeness on the one hand or power on the other hand.  There are two tracks that you can assess any relationship you are in with anybody.  And there is such a thing as the good use of power.  So putting that together we move to the next slide, we started to look at the exemplars of good power.  And I am thinking here of Malala, of Nelson Mandela and Mohammed Magandi.  What unites them is a commitment to zero violence.  To zero abuse.  To zero bullying.  And so if we move to the next slide, we are close to launching a campaign which is going to be teaching the next generation how to use that power well in a digital world.  And we think that's ‑‑ that is essential to start young.  So we are targeting young children in the first phase of this campaign. 

And we really believe and we are competent that if we start well, if we embed digital civility in the younger generation, young children, we start to translate that in to how they are tweens.  Research shows from other campaigns that have built skills and values in young children, that those values do and those skills do start to come forward and resurrect in the teen years.  And that is a foundation for a life we hope of being digital citizens.  So that's the campaign.  I'm excited to announce it tonight.  If you got any interest in this campaign, if you would like to collaborate with us, come and see me after this. 

>> JIM PRENDERGAST:  Great.  Thanks, Nicholas.  And thanks to everyone, Clara, Jacqueline and Tommaso.  And thank you to the audience.  We do want to be respectful of everyone's time both here and the group that's waiting to take over for the next session.  As Nicholas said, you know, I know everyone would be more than happy to talk to you and maybe take it out in the hallway so we can let them set up.  Thanks for your participation and thanks to the panelists and remote moderator.  Have a great IGF and have a good evening. 

>> JACQUELINE BEAUCHERE:  And thank you for going the distance with us.