Technical and cultural aspects of UA discussed at EuroDIG 2020

EuroDIG 2020, European Dialogue on Internet Governance, took place on June 10-12, 2020. This recognized open European platform regularly brings experts together to exchange experience and discuss issues of internet governance. This year, despite the remote format, the forum was as representational as usual. Moreover, all internet users were able to follow EuroDIG 2020 discussions and speeches streamed on YouTube.

Russian experts also took part in EuroDIG 2020. The Coordination Center for TLD .RU/.РФ was represented by Chief Analyst Maria Kolesnikova with a report at the session “Universal Acceptance – a technical or a cultural issue?” The report focused on the use of local languages on the internet in Russia and Eastern Europe. Maria Kolesnikova spoke about various local initiatives to preserve cultural and language diversity in the countries of the region. The report also presented the main conclusions reached during the large meeting of the Cyrillic on the Internet roundtable discussion held on the day that marked the anniversary of .РФ ccTLD. Kolesnikova also talked about ways to address technical issues related to the introduction of Universal Acceptance (UA) at the regional level, in particular, about the results of the UA Regional Coordination Group for CIS and Eastern Europe.

“The main conclusion we arrived at during the discussion is that, despite significant technical progress in internet internationalization, there are still a lot of aspects on which we must work together to create a truly multi-language, multicultural and inclusive internet: internet for all,” Maria Kolesnikova said.

The session participants discussed various aspects of internet internationalization: how users’ national languages influenced the development of local content, which cultural aspects should be considered during the technical implementation of UA and how national cultures’ specific traits can be combined, among other things.

The speakers discussed ways to more actively involve many different groups including internet users, governments, businesses, and the technical community in the internet internationalization processes. One speaker stressed that it was necessary to consider all opinions and expand collaboration. Chair of the ICANN Governmental Advisory Committee Manal Ismail noted that these issues were important for various countries because introducing UA into the development of local content and domain space helped to attract new users, as well as develop the internet’s social inclusiveness, reduce social gaps, and help in achieving digital conversion. She also spoke about the committee’s Universal Acceptance and IDNs Working Group (GAC UA-IDNs WG) established following ICANN 66.

NetNod Technical Director Patrik Fältström spoke in detail on the developments in UA introduction. He noted that technical standards and the necessary specifications considering users’ demands for the use of the internet in their mother tongues had already been developed. According to Patrik Fältström, to date, most work focused on implementing these standards in commercial and free software. These standards must be considered when forming the requirements for the development and purchase of program solutions.

Moreover, EuroDIG 2020 hosted a session “The Impact of DNS Encryption on the Internet Ecosystem and its Users,” which Coordination Center experts helped to prepare. The participants discussed the impact of DNS encryption (mostly DNS over HTTPS) on final users’ confidentiality and security, problems internet providers face when introducing different models of DoH implementation as well as the influence of the browser-oriented management of most infrastructural functions on the internet’s policy and architecture. The session was moderated by Andrew Campling (419 Consulting) and Mikhail Anisimov (ICANN).

Previous News Next news