[governance] [bestbits] Who governs AI globally

farzaneh badii (via governance Mailing List) governance at lists.riseup.net
Sat Jun 8 20:37:06 EDT 2019


In my opinion AI governance has nothing to do with Internet governance. AI
can be used on the Internet and against the Internet (censoring content
etc) but its governance is separate. This is something we are not clear
about in our discussions on AI and have derailed Internet governance
discussions with unrelated AI governance issues.

But I have an answer to your point. Many of us here from undemocratic
countries could not have participated effectively in multilateral processes
of the UN. Many countries have governments that do not represent them
effectively. UN is not an accountable organization. While any stakeholder
can participate at IG institutions, this is not the case for the UN
processes. Those who oppress us will represent us in the UN processes.
Their purpose is to protect their own existence and political institutions
rather than representing people. Sometimes they are not even aware of the
issues that affect their people. And we cannot fight for inclusion. UN is
for the nation states. They are the decisionmakers there even if they claim
they have also established multistakeholder processes.

I believe the mis-contribution to the civil society advocacy was,
unfortunately, the unnatural divide that was created by civil society
activists among the civil society itself. We were quite effective in WSIS
and other processes and to some extent still are at some IG processes. But
we are becoming more and more microfragmented. The more fragmented our
efforts are, the more we lack collective action, the easier it is for the
more powerful to pick us up one by one and make us ineffective. We can have
as many stand alone and similiarly themed workshops at IGF because we don't
agree with each other on some issues and don't cooperate to draft
proposals, we can have parallel and competing civil society meetings and
not get together. The ability is surely there but is it to the benefit of
civil society, the Internet community and globally connected people? I
think the answer is no!


On Tue, May 28, 2019 at 8:58 AM parminder <parminder at itforchange.net> wrote:

> OECD's digital economy committee has developed these AI governance
> principles http://www.oecd.org/going-digital/ai/principles/
> And now the World Economic Forum has stepped in to do global governance of
> AI
> https://www.technologyreview.com/s/613589/the-world-economic-forum-wants-to-develop-global-rules-for-ai/?utm_campaign=the_download.unpaid.engagement&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=73093912&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-9gRdOMFU_P4B7Q-HO5n-3dCwcrtYZbneXewQ5B6cKP8_2SWOESFXhaycLcYQwgtWjcbbicSXA3ZsZpMZt9KPEUNYH5Dw&_hsmi=73093912
> Maybe, at least at this stage the IG civil society would want to re-assess
> why they fought so bitterly against any such thing potentially being done
> at a UN body.... Where at least all countries are equally represented, and
> big business does not dictate terms openly. . (And had at the same time
> supported the WEF based NetMundial Initiative.)
> Interestingly enough, we were then told that the UN can have no role
> because there are countries like China over there. Really! The WEF
> initiative is headed by a USian and a Chinese... Going beyond the OECD
> initiative, it is an attempt to find common ground between the two digital
> biggies, and the emerging two poles of the digital world...
> So, we have what many of us have been warning all this multistakeholderism
> is about ...It is a way to subvert democratic institutions and thinking and
> make it more acceptable to have those who are politically and economically
> the strongest to dictate rules to everyone... From democratic governance to
> a market of governance, where what you can do depends on what power you
> bring to the table.
> We see this happening right in front of our eyes..
> And how bitterly did the civil society reps, and also tech community,
> oppose at the UN working group on enhanced cooperation for international
> public policies (and other forums), in the end, even to just have a day or
> two of annual dedicated meeting at the most innocuous Commission for
> Science and Technology for Development, where developing countries could
> bring up their Internet/ digital governance problems , and could maybe have
> just that small role in shaping global digital governance, including AI
> governance...
> But, no, multistakeholderism checks for your political and economic heft
> not your democratic legitimacy.
> Now, the developing countries can sit on the outside and wait for the
> richest countries (OECD) and the biggest global businesses (WEF) to develop
> global digital/ AI rules and convey it to them!
> Does the Internet governance civil society plan to introspect on this all
> important mis-contribution that it made? Or at least the developing country
> participants here?
> parminder
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