The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during an IGF virtual call. 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, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: It's two minutes past the hour. And let me just check the attendance. I think we can start. Thank you very much. Good evening, afternoon, morning, ladies and gentlemen. I know it's, for some people, it's a good time, and some people, it's not that good. But that is the cycle that we have.
A reminder that it's being recorded, there is transcription, and with that, I will give the floor over to Anriette, and of course please remember to use the speaking queue or put your hand up, we can see it as well. Thank you. Anriette, please. You have the floor.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thank you, Chengetai. Good evening, everyone. Apologies, I'm not putting my video on, and I'm actually on a very poor Internet connection. Chengetai is my backup. He will just jump in and take over the chairing if you cannot hear me. Welcome, everyone to the MAG meeting. This is our 10th call this year. This is a, I think, our last call before you will all start, which is a very huge part of MAG members tasks, which is the evaluation of session proposals.
But before I say more, let me give the floor to the Host Country of the annual Forum 2021. Any remarks or comments from you?
>> PRZEMYSLAW: Good morning, afternoon, evening, everybody, thank you for giving me the floor. A quick update on the situation on the pandemic situation in Poland, the situation is luckily improving, with over 50 million people vaccinated, with at least first dose of vaccine. The situation is improving. We have just started opening the economy, meaning for instance the open restaurants, reopen, and the restrictions are lowering, are leveling down, so lowering down.
So hopefully, we are, hopefully we are coming back to at least what is called the semi normal conditions, if I may say so in this difficult times. So we do expect that the holiday period, through the holiday period even more people will be vaccinated so the situation is getting better. But everyone of course is thinking and talking about the fourth wave of the pandemic for the autumn period. So many people are actually talking about this, and they are being afraid of that. So nobody knows what the future will bring, and what might show up. But everyone is, hopefully, in a more optimistic, if I may say so, mood, than it was a couple of months ago, when we had the peak of the third wave, and many people suffered, and of course, there were many deaths. But hopefully, we are recovering.
For my side, that's more or less all. If you have any questions, and comments, please do raise them. Of course, I'm more than happy ‑‑ I'm more than happy to know your perspective, your current perspective as always on the situation in your countries and regions. Thank you very much.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Please, everyone ....
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About the current situation in your country. For tonight let me go over the agenda, quickly. We have had the welcome from the Chair, I might make a few more remarks just now. We will have updates from the Secretariat. Then we will look at the next task, which is the workshop evaluation process, and then firstly we will look at the preparatory phase because as you will remember, we decided that IGF 2021 will have a virtual preparatory phase. That preparatory phase will include MAG members continue to work in your issue teams.
What I'd like to do at the end of this meeting is just review some of the tasks that you have prepared for, so that we can check in that everyone understands what they need to expect. We will send this to you in writing as well, tonight would be a good opportunity to review that. Some MAG members have in fact indeed, some of the new MAG members have asked what they should expect, and have actually expressed quite a lot of confusion, which is understandable. As I said before, everyone, please just be patient. Bear with the process. It has been challenging this year for the MAG, particularly for new MAG members to have had to plunge into all of this work without the benefit of a face‑to‑face meeting.
Before we go into the next steps, Chengetai, do you have any updates from the Secretariat?
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: I don't have any real updates from the Secretariat. As you know, the call for session proposals is open and it will close on the 26th of May. We are seeing the input rate is rather low. I would all encourage you to please just go to your respective networks, encourage them to submit. I do know that most of the submissions come within the last 48 hours, but it's still very good to spread the word around, and also underscore and remind them that physical participation at the IGF 2021 is not necessary, even if you are workshop organizer. You can be a virtual workshop organizer. So please do encourage people to get in early because in the last couple of years, as I said, it's always the last 48 hours, and Luis is up all night, and there is technical issues, and etcetera. This year, we really do not have that buffer to extend the deadline. The earlier people start the workshop proposals and enter them into the system, I think it will be the better.
The other thing that I just wanted to mention, I'll mention it here, it is just for the first, for the second open consultations and MAG meeting, we did select 30th of June for the date for the second day of the MAG consultations, and I wanted to make sure that you are all aware that this would also be the last day for the EuroDIG meeting. So there may be clashes of, if there are any concerns or any clashes, and people who want to attend the last day and MAG members who should be in the second day of the MAG meeting, if anybody has any concern, can you please say so now, before we set these things in stone and publish the schedule, etcetera. So this is basically the last call, should we maintain the second day of the MAG meeting for 30th of June, that is the Wednesday, which is also the last day for EuroDIG, I know it's almost impossible to choose a day when nothing else is happening. But I want everybody to be cognizant of that fact.
I'll just pause now to see if there is anybody.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Chengetai. We have already had one participant saying they are moderating a session, and I think we should not clash with EuroDIG. I think that's, if we can avoid that, we really shouldn't, but anyone else? I see Giacomo your question, anyone else who wants to or will be participating in EuroDIG on the 30th? I don't see any more, maybe you should send out a final reminder, Chengetai, and ask people.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: I'll send out a final reminder by E‑mail, as you suggest, Anriette. We will consider the matter closed by the end of this week, maybe Thursday. Thank you. I think that is all for now. Oh, yes, and the final thing is that please, please if anybody else needs support for Internet costs, please send an E‑mail to me, cc'ing Anja as well, please, because I might miss to cc. people.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks for that. Everyone, before we look at the evaluation, I posted in the chat what are the next main tasks, the three primary milestones that you need to be focused on in the coming months. Firstly, the evaluation of the workshop proposals, and to do that, you will work in groups. For new MAG members, the tradition has been, for the Secretariat to randomly assign MAG members to these groups. This is done in a way to look at how many proposals we have received, and then to make sure that MAG members are more or less evaluate the same number of workshops, and these will be groups that work on the different issue areas, and the idea is that, for example, the main focus area on inclusion, that everyone who is evaluating workshop proposals that respond to that main focus area, can then do it together and talk about it, and assess whether they feel the topic is being addressed comprehensively enough or not. These are different from the issue teams. I know this can be confusing. This is how it has been done in the past.
Secondly, you will be working with the Secretariat, you will review, we will start showing you an outline tonight, the draft schedule of the IGF 2021 virtual preparatory phase. You will recall, we said there will be two components to this, yes, IGF 2021 virtual phase, preparatory phase and then the annual Forum in Katowice which will be hybrid. We need to plan for the open consultation and MAG meeting, and on 21 and 22 June. Then there will be the meeting. These are the main milestones that you need to hone in on. The work on the preparatory phase will be done in issue teams as well. But those will be the same issue teams that you joined earlier this year, when you developed a policy questions and draft descriptive text for IGF 2021 focus areas.
Are there any questions? Let me go back to the meeting page to see if there are any questions or any hands. But these are the main tasks that you will have to undertake in the coming months. Evaluation of all the proposals will start once the date has closed, and we will send you more information on that, as the time passes. As Chengetai said earlier, I think you should all focus at the moment on encouraging people to apply, I've been approached by some people in the IGF community who were actually confused by the hybrid IGF. Adam, this is for you and Therese and your working group to take into account, they understand hybrid as meaning they have to be face‑to‑face, and or at least some of them, and that are proposing a ...
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Because they cannot yet know whether they will be there or they have already decided they can't travel, they are not putting in session proposals. This is actually I think a communications issue, and we need to make it clear to people that they can still apply to host sessions, even if they are not physically planning to travel to Katowice at this point. In the form itself it is clear because we tell people they can confirm at a later stage. But at this point we need to encourage people to put in proposals because they have been coming in very slowly.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: If I could indicate, we did update the entry page for the call for proposals, trying to make it clear in bold that they could so we did that today. Hopefully that will help.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: I hope so too. I think it will help. Thanks for that, Chengetai.
Can we have a look now at the workshop evaluation process, and then after that we will revisit the preparatory phase, so that we all have a clear understanding of what that will entail. But your next big task, someone asked me already how much time should you budget, my estimate is that it takes at least three full days, and you can spread it out. But it does take time to evaluate the workshop proposals, because you need to read them. You need to read the proposal, and you need to then also engage in discussion with the groups. But to give us an update on the process and the steps and the criteria for workshop evaluation, and let me hand over to Roberto who will update us on the work that he has done with Luis, and everyone else in the workshop process working group. Roberto.
>> Thank you very much, I will ask Luis if you could share me rights.
>> LUIS BOBO: Sure.
>> Roberto: Thank you very much. Sorry, I'm going to cut the other sharing. And as you said before, thank you very much, Anriette, I'm Roberto, second year MAG member. As you mentioned before, Anriette, we already received your mail regarding the tasks that we are going to fulfill during the following weeks, which mostly are related with evaluation process, and in that document you will find the link to this particular document that I'm sharing, which are the evaluation form, actually this is working version still, because we already set all the Wednesdays for meetings with the working group for evaluation process. Our main task right now is to conclude this document which I believe it's almost done. We still have some, I will say now, minor final comments that we are going to discuss tomorrow with the group. Again you are all invited to join the group. I have to recognize the effort of Theresa and Adam, who we are borrowing from the other group, I think they are going to be part officially of this workshop evaluation, support in a very good way. Anriette was also supporting during our last meetings, and once again, I urge you, I ask you, please, to join this group, particularly first year members. It will be important for you to participate in the following years regarding this process. As I was saying, the document is almost final. We have adjusted six different criterias. We have the first one, session content and description, we have the second criteria which is response to policy questions, the third one is about relevance, which has also major update from the last time we had it. Number 4 is format and approach to encouraging participation. This one is joined two previous criteria we had. We defined to have a particularly separated hybrid approach, criteria, and finally diversity. All those, as you can see, have an explanation of what the evaluators as you know, this is a task that we are going to perform individually. So and the idea is for you to have a clear understanding of what you are supposed to evaluate. In each of the criterias, you have that explanation, and also which sections are relevant or which sections are related with the criteria, and you will have the different grades that we are marking them, from in general terms we have criteria of absent, poor, needs improvement, good and excellent. Of course, the descriptions of the concept are different for each of the different criterias. Also, there is a proposal I think that is another final part that we are going to decide, but initially we have this weight that is assigned to each of the six criterias. We have total sum of course of 100 percent. But they are spread in this six criterias with the ways that you have at the final page of this document.
I'm hoping we will have it ended by tomorrow which is our final meeting about this document, and Luis will then work with the form, that we all are going to use for the evaluation process itself, and of course it will have all this content that we are defining here. That is why it's real important and since you already have all of you the link for this document, I'm sure you may provide some further suggestions to what we have done so far.
That is it on my side. Thank you very much.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks a lot, Roberto. Are there any questions at this point? I don't see anyone in the queue. I'm going to try and recap, Luis, can I share my screen now, please? Thanks.
>> LUIS BOBO: Yes, you can do it.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks MAG members. Thanks, Luis. I will do this review ...
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Maybe it's not a good idea. You're cutting a lot, quite a lot.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Chengetai, I'll stop the share and you can take over the chairing. The next thing we need to do is look at the preparatory phase, and or you can review, maybe you can review this document. You should have access to this as well. This is just the list of tasks for the MAG.
>> Chengetai: Anriette, is this the document? Maybe Anriette has gone off. Okay. I'll just carry on, until she comes back on, I think, the problem is that it couldn't take her screen sharing and speaking at the same time.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: I'm still here.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: You can carry on.
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: No, please, you continue.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: No problem then. We have so this is just a draft, so the first thing that we have is the build up phase that is from July to September, and that is what the IGF intersessional activities, and this is mainly focused on of course the BPFs, the DCs and policy networks that we have. We should also concentrate on the stock taking sessions, that we are going to have in the IGF 2021.
We would like to organize discussions, mainly through the, either through the national regional initiatives, also through the other networks that we have, so that we can get people prepared, get people thinking about the issues that we are going to discuss at Katowice because we don't want to actually start the conversation there of course. We want to have a discussion that matures from now, until Katowice so we can have real discourse there, and have proper results that come out of there. We do have the high‑level track and parliamentary track which is still being worked on, together with IGF Secretariat, DESA and the Government of Poland as well, and it's still under development and we will be sharing those once it is at a stage that we can share.
As we have mentioned before, capacity‑building events, not just for the hubs but also for the national and regional initiatives, how they can best use online tools. We are also building a program for that, and not just us, but we are going to try and include the summer schools, Diplo and of course Luis is going to be helping with that.
As you know we are planning to have a third MAG meeting in September, hopefully the situation will allow that we would at least have some people who will be able to come to Geneva in September for a face‑to‑face, so we can also make this to be a trial of this hybrid meeting, because quite obviously other people will not be able to come here, but we are hopefully, we hope some will be able to come and we can also try this hybrid meeting.
So during this third MAG meeting, that we are going to have in September, we are thinking of having quite in depth meetings with the intersessional work that we have, and this can also act as just a place, because I think it is very important to have these milestones, to have these marks on the road to IGF 2021, where people are, I don't want to say forced but are encouraged to concentrate and formulate in a proper way the work that they have been doing. And we find that it is very useful to have that. So that is one of the things that we are going to be looking at for the September meeting.
Then, we have the issue teams, we have the issue teams that were generated some months back, and when we talk about these issue teams and when we are also thinking about the main sessions that we are going to have, one of the things that we have been discussing is that these main sessions should not be stand alone main sessions as well, as what has been seemingly happening in the past. We really want to have an integrated IGF so there has to be coordination between the various streams, and the various focus areas to bring it together, so we are not having disparate themes but there is a kind of sort of like weaving, I don't know what you want to call it, weaving it and putting together various interconnected streams. So when we are talking about these intersessional teams, that the MAG is put into, we would want them to coordinate and also bring in all these other different aspects.
We are looking at, as we have been discussing, as Anriette has said, that it's not a wiki, but also we are looking at some sort of integrated environment that we can use to work, that we can have everything together that we can function. We are also doing that for the Web site refurbishment which is going on, I'm not too sure whether or not it's going to be ready by September. But hopefully, it is. We will see what we can use there. But we are also looking at other tools for that. Can you please go up a little bit? I've talked about the Web streams. My up is maybe your down. Can you go down a bit? Yep (chuckles).
Yes. I did think I mentioned the consolidating issue themes, pre‑meeting guide that we are going to have as well. Yes, during the run up process, encourage, through the regional meetings, yes, as well, just to get them prepared, just to get encourage the regional IGFs to consolidate their ideas, so it's, so they are better prepared to provide input into the global IGF. We do know that, of course, the regional and national IGF do not have to actually follow what the global IGF is doing, but we are encouraging them to please consider it and to please take part in it, of course, because we do want a richer IGF 2021. I think I've mentioned the training. I've mentioned the BPF, PMs, DC work development. Strategy sessions in cooperation with other stakeholders, yes, there are a few things that are in the works. We are talking to a few partners to see whether, what we can do to, not just for capacity‑building, but to, again, to enrich the discourse, to develop the discourse so by the time we come to Katowice, it is basically a matured discourse and we can get the best out of it. Microsoft is one of these partners that we are talking about to have some sessions, one in each quarter. I think we will be publishing more information about that once we finalized what we will be doing on that. I think that is about it. I hope you could understand me. I know I might have been meandering a little bit. But if you have any questions, or anything, please just say. (pause).
>> ANRIETTE ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks for that, Chengetai. Yes, does anyone have any ....
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: I think she just cut out again. So, I'll ask, does anybody have any questions? Does anybody have any questions? Any dates yet for September? No, we have not yet set the dates for September. It will probably, if nothing is happening, it won't be the first week of September definitely, but more to the middle or to the end of September, if that is okay. We will be checking to see, of course, that we don't clash with anything or we clash with as little as possible. But you will be, you will know in good time, by the end of the June open consultations and MAG meeting, we would have announced the prospective dates for your consideration. The prep phase will be fully virtual? Yes, it will, unless there are, I don't think there will be, but unless there will be some national, I mean some regional IGFs, which may have a, some part, which is face‑to‑face. But at the moment, I don't think there are any, and Anja may correct me on that. Yes, that is, Timea, you can speak, right, why don't you speak.
>> Thank you, Chengetai. I'm sorry for taking too much time. Yes, I'm a little bit confused. Thank you for giving me the floor as well, being a MAG member. I'm confused about the criterion in the workshop evaluation around hybrid format. I understand that IGF is hybrid even if a session is proposed fully online, there will be attendants who are participating in person who would want to tune in for that session from Katowice. I assume there will be some sort of room from where people can do that, or some sort of facility from where people in group setting can participate in a chosen workshop that is on the schedule. My question is, if there is an opportunity or the option for proponents to propose a fully online session, basically the date will not be there in Katowice, none of the speakers will be there in Katowice, everything will be from their perspective organized on line. What is it that they need to include in their workshop proposal to explain how they will include on‑site participants, when at the moment, at least in my limited knowledge, there is no information on how, what will be available in that room for those people. I'm asking, will they be able to ask for the floor? Can they get into a speaking queue? Will they have individual microphones? Will they have individual cameras? Will they have to come up to a mic in physical setting? So those things, while the proponents don't know how that room is going to be equipped, I think I don't see how a proponent who is thinking of proposing a fully online session can meaningfully think of a way to include participants who are participating off‑line. I'm wondering if that criteria can be maybe just ‑‑
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: You want us to flesh it out a little bit.
>> TIMEA: Yes, either we give information on what is available on site, so that people can know how to include on‑site participants, or we change our criteria into generally a criteria on engagement, and we call it a day like that, because at this moment, I think it's a bit confusing to people. I've had a couple conversations with people in our stakeholder group that are thinking of proposing sessions for IGF and this is a big question for them. I would appreciate any, either from the Secretariat or Adam or anyone, much appreciated.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Let me put it this way. Let's not discuss it now. But we will clarify it in the documentation, and come what may, we assure you that there will be a possibility, I know the hybrid meeting group does want it to be a hybrid that we have, we do have at least somebody on site. But I don't think that, and Adam can correct me if I'm wrong, that it will be a disqualifying factor if nobody can be on site, because these are circumstances that are beyond our control, so to speak, in some instances.
I would think that it is much, much easier to have the on‑site participants be on line, because everybody has got a laptop, everybody, there will be the speaking queue, every single room will have a speaking queue like we have here, as part of the Web site, IGF, I wouldn't call it a Web site, I would call it information portal renewal, we are going to be having speaking queues for all the rooms. It doesn't really matter where you are, on‑site or off‑site. You will be able to go onto the speaking queue and you will be able to speak according to the order that your name appears on that speaking queue. So we are making preparations for things like that. In the actual venue itself, people will be able to go into a room and see the online meeting, because it's an online meeting. It doesn't matter. You can still have projection, every room has projection in it or you can be in your hotel room. So those are there.
Yes, we may not tell you exactly 100 percent how that is going to happen, because it is a developing situation. But the facilities will be there, definitely, that we will be able to have this type of a meeting. But yes, we will see what we can do to allay those fears or make it better in the documentation that we have. But thank you, Timea. That is a good comment.
>> Shall I just say, I see people's hands are up but I have a feeling that this could take us away from the ‑‑
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Exactly.
>> ADAM: Timea is right. It is confusing. I can see how somebody wish to submit a proposal on the way would be confused because it is not really described on the Web site. Everything you have described, Chengetai, I think has to go on the Web site, and should be sent to the MAG list, so that people are aware of it. One of the things that Theresa and I thought of was that people should be offering suggestions on how they would be working with this, which is extremely difficult because the basic answer is, I think, we will work with the IGF Secretariat to facilitate this session which is a rather catch all. But then you can have ideas, because that is one of the things that we are working on.
But the basic idea was that people would have a panel of some kind that would be all online or anticipating they would be all online because they were accessing from wherever they were located, they would go through the proposal, process, if accepted, like any other workshop, they would be allocated a room in Katowice, the workshop would be listed on the schedule. Anyone on site or anyone on line would be able to attend which is the hybrid element of the meeting. I must admit we didn't think through well enough what the hybrid element, the online element in this particular case would be for somebody actually operating and running that session. Yes, there would be a moderator in the room. But we don't know how that moderator would be arranged. There would be certain types of technology in the room, but we don't know how that technology would be arranged. Yes, it would be anticipated that the persons in the room in Katowice would be accessing via their own devices so they would be watching Zoom on their screen. You can think of various things that would happen from there.
But rather than continuing on, it's probably best to actually work out better answers, and not spend the next hour discussing this. Otherwise we won't get to the crux of this meeting, which is to understand and I need to understand as a new MAG member, how to do the evaluations. I'm sorry this has come up, and it's something we should have thought through in more detail. Thanks for mentioning this. In the meantime, I would suggest telling people please apply, you are very welcome, that is the purpose of it, to allow people to access and participate in the IGF wherever they are accessing from, wherever they are participating from. Thanks.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yeah, something will be worked out. It is very much possible and as I said, we do have the elements, but we can't tell you exactly what they are. But it will be possible. We have had plenty of discussions on this.
>> Thank you. I wanted to maybe put forward a potentially different suggestion, because it sounds like there is so much unknown, and I also as everyone here heard from the community about confusion and lack of clarity and us as MAG members needing to evaluate criteria that we don't have a good sense of. My suggestion would be that maybe we could have a section where we ask for their ideas, what are they thinking, or that they commit to taking, to doing one of the trainings, or they check a box that says I commit to making this an engaging format, and we will keep abreast of the latest developments, because it seems like ...
But it seems like this is a factor that could disadvantage people who are new to this process, people who have never been to an in‑person IGF and don't understand how they might adapt. Instead of trying to add a whole 'nuther level of explanation and description and potentialities, that we actually lighten the load, while requesting a commitment from the organizers that they will commit to engagement, and we can include language and links and all of that. I'd like to put that forward.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you very much, Courtney. That is in fact a very good arrangement. Let's not complicate it a little more. The form is complicated enough. Yes. Mattias.
>> Thank you very much. Mr. Chengetai, I would like to diverge from the topic because when you mention the parliamentarian sense I would like to give you a update what is going on, and how I am moving among the parliamentarian session, because I had a charter and I've been in touch with the ITU Secretariat, in order to promote the IGF within the parliamentarian section. And they are really ongoing, and they are focusing on the IGF topics, in order to widespread the IGF event as much as possible. This is the work that it doesn't begin two days ago, but they are really on the way and they are focused and I will give you my help in order to create the best convening of parliamentarian as much as possible. Thank you very much, Chengetai.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you, yes. We will be informing you as we go along, I mean the MAG as such. Of course we are very grateful for Mattias's help. Any other questions, interventions? Okay, none.
So, I will go to the next topic, if that is okay, which is building the issue teams. Now, we do have a document about the issue teams, and I will just ask if you can display it and go through it, thank you. Okay, thank you.
>> Yes, I will take you through the documents of the issue teams, although part of it is, has already been said, in the explanation of the preparatory phase.
I would like to focus on two points, or two main points, which I think are the most important. I have control over the document?
>> No, you haven't. I'm sharing, this is Luis. But I can move it.
>> Please move it a little, or go immediately to the second page, because I think that's the concrete ‑‑ yes, there. This is introduction, as let's say the first important point is that the issue teams, the idea is that they just build further on the teams that have been working in the defining the issues and helping the Secretariat also developing the narratives, with the proposals and sessions. It is not something entirely new. We start with the idea those people probably will be interested in working together on those teams. If necessary, they can ask for invite, or invite other people to join them. What is now the task for the issue teams, and that is under 2.2, it is mainly being the eyes and ears for the MAG on those issues, on their issue area. I think there are two things, important, the idea is that issue teams are expected to explore, the IGF community at large, the activities within the IGF community at large, from the perspective of their issue. When we say the IGF community at large, it's not only IGF, it is not only the main sessions or the session proposals, intersessional work, but try to have the widest largest possible overview they can have. This can include meetings that are held at NRIs that can be, this can include sessions and meetings that are relevant to the topics held by DCs or documents held by DCs. That is the first point.
The second point is issue teams are also expected to serve as a kind of focal point for the issue area, electing information on how a issue is being addressed within the larger community. What is the difference with the previous point, you will say, the idea is that by calling them focal points, they also serve as a point that organizers, people active in the BPF, people that are running a DC, other MAG members, or even organizers of individual sessions in their country or region, when they say go to the full IGF program and say, actually, we had a very interesting session at our local NRI, that they just know who to address and who to go to so they can go to contact those issue teams, so this might be interesting for the broader IGF community. That can be as easy as pointing the issue teams at the report or presentation or recording of a session that is available. Very specific the issue of the deliverables of the issue team, it is to help structure the IGF program, Chengetai called it a weaving a canvas with all bits and pieces of what is happening within the community, possible actions can be specific outreach to intersessional activities, also those wiki pages per issue area, Chengetai mentioned earlier and also involvement in the IGF preparatory process or preparatory phase. This is all fresh. There is still some more thinking and probably MAG members will also have concrete ideas of how issue teams could help in organizing IGF preparatory phase.
There is a note there, I think it's very important to understand that the issue teams, these issue teams are seen as something completely separate from selection process. Don't confuse the session selection process. On the other hand, after once the selections for the program have been selected, I think it can be tough for issue teams to go through the list of selections and identify from their issue area where there may be possible links that can be used somewhere else in the program.
It might sound all a bit complicated, but I always see myself as with a simple example from, as you know, I have been active in best practice forums. I would try to explain it like this. Imagine there is a main session going to be organized on the specific topic, at the same year or previous year there has been BPF working on maybe different issue but have been discussing or defining a specific concept let's call it A, concept that is relevant for the topic we discussed. What has been happening a lot in, so far in privacy is I think that the main session and the BPF will have their own sessions at the IGF meeting and nothing will happen. Those issue teams could for example, maybe suggest or maybe link, once the session is organized it is flagged that BPF has been defined discussing the specific issue A and maybe five minutes of the main session can be used for the panel to comment on the BPF's definition. That way there is a linkage of different activities for us, in the past somewhere things were organized, in parallel to each other. Luis, you can go to the next page, there are two points left. So issue teams, team members and facilitation, I covered that. They are led by MAG members. The idea was that they were based off those issue teams that already are in place. On the documents for this meeting, there is still a link to the overview of those issue teams so that you can see who is in there, but if you are interested to join one of those teams or no longer interested, just flag or let the Secretariat know and we can make those changes. The last points I would like to make is under 2.4 in the first paragraph, and it's a point that Chengetai already mentions. It's that the work of the issue teams during the preparatory phase is, can be very crucial or is very crucial in getting information and collecting information from different parts of the IGF, and so that that can serve as a starting point for feeding diverse perspectives and experiences into the preparation of the IGF main sessions. So that main sessions where I think in the past, main sessions were kind of organized on their own, and often doing a great job in getting external experts, expertise, and high level speakers to the IGF so build a main session, the idea is that with the help of issue teams, this is complemented with another movement, where there is also a introvert look into the IGF community, that main sessions can also be fed, for example, with a discussion or from a discussion, that happen at DC or BPF or any other interesting event or initiative within the IGF community. That's all. I haven't seen if there are questions in the chat but I'm happy to answer or Anriette, if I missed something, please jump in.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Let me go from the bottom, will issue teams meet openly, so for example relevant DCs, well, if you can speak, why don't you speak, Mark, rather than me reading it out. Mark?
>> Thank you, Chengetai. I'm just catching up on issue teams and I'm involved in a Dynamic Coalition. I thought there is a potentially valuable opportunity for the DCs that are maybe on a specific issue covered by an issue team to connect in some way. It may provide useful input, and maybe add perspectives that will assist the issue team to take any decisions or develop guidance or whatever they are aiming to do. That was the point of my question. Thanks.
>> There is some part of the concrete of how issue teams have to concretely, have to function, I think we are still developing and thinking and probably the MAG members involved in the issue teams should also help to think about that. On the one hand, it's, I think it's very relevant and very important that, for example, the idea is, the idea of those wiki pages that they can serve as ‑‑
‑‑ platform or public space where people can see what the issue teams so far has collected, on the one hand. Whether or not there have to be open meetings or structured process or specific call for input or and how that should look like, that is still something that has to be developed and probably also the issue teams should look into that. My personal perspective or personal concern is as this is a new approach and as we are already midyear, that probably for this year, it will be more important to have informal way of working where actually individual team members will look and say try to do their best to find those linkages and reach out to people, rather than setting up a process to collect the inputs. If this issue teams are successful, probably from next year, from start, could be more elaborated and more, which process and clear calls for input, but my personal feeling is that probably for this year as we are already midyear, the issue teams are probably more benefited by trying to do their best and do a flexible approach and trying to get some, as much as input as possible. On the other hand, I think there will be, or there is the different issues teams have a mailing list and but other points like how exactly somebody that has a topic should contact the issue teams, that is the, has to be thought out.
>> Just checking the ‑‑ I don't see any. If there are any, can you please raise your hand or speak? If not, I'll give it a 6 count, and if there are not, we will go to the next topic. Six count. So then our next topic is, any other business. Is there any other topic we should cover now, given that we are still waiting. Anriette, I see one hand. I don't know where that is from. Yes, Mark, please.
>> Thank you, Chengetai. Yes. That was me. A quick question, I posted it in the chat, very early on. It was about networking sessions. I noted that the deadline for submitting proposals for networking sessions is the same date as the deadline for workshop applications. I was wondering, maybe there is guidance I haven't seen. Forgive me if there is and I haven't spotted it. But will these applications for networking sessions be assessed in the same way as workshops?
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: No.
>> By competition, with similar criteria applied, or, sorry, you are saying no. Okay. That answers the question then really. The view is for the Secretariat ‑‑
>> Yes, we would and it also depends on how many of them, etcetera, but of course, we will try and accommodate networking sessions, because I think that is a very important part of the IGF activities. Let's just say we are going to be treating it the same way as we treat Day Zero events. Does that make sense?
>> Yes, thank you. That is helpful. Thank you very much.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Adam, please.
>> Thanks, Chengetai. This is Adam Peake, the only events that the MAG is evaluating is the workshops, is that correct? So town halls open forums, networking events and all the rest go through another process. Is that right?
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: I will say that, these two things, there is evaluation, which is of course workshops. The other sessions from what the Secretariat is evaluating, we will of course share the list with the MAG. It's not going to be totally, I don't know if you want to call it sidestepping, but we will share with you the information. So if you have any comments, you will be free to comment on it. So and you will be able to give any insights as well, that you may have.
>> Right. The reason I'm asking, it's twofold, really. First of all, as a MAG member I'm fully aware that we have a lot of work to do to evaluate workshops. I'm not asking for more work. However, however, it starts to look like an increasingly large part of the IGF schedule, and this is thinking about response from a broader community, a larger part of the IGF schedule is emerging into a black box and I do not mean any disrespect for the work that anybody does to make those sort of evaluations and proposals and so on. But we hear about it, about them, from MAG members and we have it from other sessions, so if it ends up that a substantive amount of the actual agenda is selected outside of the MAG and the principals of bottom up inclusive of the processes that it's meant to represent, I'm not trying to suggest there is anything wrong in any way at all, but I'm saying that we as a group need to be careful about the perception that is perhaps ‑‑
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: I fully understand what you are saying, Adam. That is why I was saying that it's not, I wanted to stress that we are not trying to sidestep the MAG in any of these places as such, and as you said, there are two things, well, there are three things. First of all, yes, the core responsibility is the workshops. But yes, we as the Secretariat, I'm speaking as the Secretariat, if there is anything else that we are doing, we will show it to the MAG, to see if they have any input to it before we actually publicize. The other thing is that there is certain segments that, I mean just to make it clear, that we do have certain segments like the high‑level track which is with the Government and with I'll say the UN, as such, so they are the ones that direct it, but that does not mean there is nowhere that we say that we will not take any input from the MAG. I mean there is speakers, there is whatever. So there is some involvement, the level of involvement does change, and it's on a scale, there is full involvement in the workshops, there may be lists involvement in other topics, and there are things, I mean does the MAG really want to start, by the way, I'm just speaking because we have plenty of time, does the MAG really want to be involved in evaluating all the 200 sessions as such, but it's important that the MAG is informed, and if the MAG sees something that they would like to comment on, yes, of course. They can comment on it. We are open.
>> Anriette mentioned in the chat, let us look at the number and types of session proposal we get and try to involve the MAG as much as possible. I think that is a fair thing, and it's also unfair on you and a small team that is doing a awful lot of other work that makes the IGF happen to add things on to your plate, quite frankly. Yes, we should try to support you. And I wasn't, as I said I'm not trying to criticize the process. I understand how it's happened. But we should be aware (overlapping speakers)
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: I fully understand. If I want to go on but I know we understand each other, if we have four book launches, we can say, these are the book launches, we don't have to form evaluation committees for the book launches. Are they Internet Governance related, are they not commercial nature, are they, there are certain tick boxes you can say fine, we are allowed to have these during lunchtime, so let's not formalize everything.
>> While we are having this very nice conversation, I apologize to everybody else, but I do want to ask a question that I hope will be useful. It is a question about the evaluation. How many do you anticipate in a normal year, the total number of workshop proposals that would come in? Then how many groups will we be divided into, we are now 40, aren't we, as a group of MAG members, how many teams will this 40 be divided into, to give us an idea of what is coming down the track. Thank you.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Okay. Luis, it's your turn to answer.
>> LUIS BOBO: Certainly, Chengetai. As a initial point, we have divided the MAG in three groups, and the number of people is according to the expected weight of the sessions at the IGF. Initially it was thought that the two main focus areas will have, correct me if I'm wrong, 30 percent each of them, and 40 percent for issues. We have created three groups. One per focus area, and one for the rest of the issues. They have twelve, twelve and sixteen people. But we still need to see how many proposals we will receive in each of the focus areas. We might need to readapt and maybe readapt the number of sessions, the focus area, we could see later, but this is the initial discussion.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, we will adapt. I can't really answer you how many we are expecting. This is a nonstandard year. We have to see. We have had ranging from to 300, to 320 but there is no way of telling this year how many we will have. We will just have to wait and see, but we will adapt and adjust.
>> Chengetai, these groups are very well‑balanced in all terms, stakeholder group, regional group, gender and MAG and time at the MAG, etcetera.
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, thank you, Luis. We do want to have balance when people are on these and they are randomized groups. I think I saw a question about that. Do we have any other questions, if you have your hand up, or any other business? Else I will announce the next MAG meeting.
I don't see any other questions that are up. And thank you very much for your participation. I know for some of you it's very late, and some of you, it's very early. We do appreciate you attending.
The next MAG meeting is going to be on the 1st of June, and it's going to be from 1100 hours to 1300 hours UTC.
I think that's it. With that, I'd like to thank the Chair for coming in, and thank you all. So thank you very much and have a good rest of your day or evening.
>> Thank you.
>> Good night.
>> Thank you, bye‑bye.
>> Thank you.
>> Thank you, bye‑bye.
>> Thank you, bye.