Version 4 (modified by Mallory Knodel, 10 years ago) (diff)


Statement by Mallory Knodel: Member, Leadership Committee, May First/People Link, United States

I represent May First/People Link, a membership organization comprised of over 400 progressive organizations and an additional 100 individual activists, mostly based in the United States. Our primary political work is acquiring, developing, and sharing among our membership resources of the Internet that enhance the scope and effectiveness of community organizing for social justice.

Recent events have made clear the Internet's importance in facilitating organization and coordination of political movements, most recently the protest of the Arab Spring. But the contribution that Internet communication makes to a better, freer and more democratic world has been demonstrated every day for over a decade and it's growing every day. With the Internet, isolation is impossible, repression and oppression cannot be hidden, truth bursts through corporate control and government cover-ups and people can communicate, express themselves, share their lives, and support each other.

The human race invented and developed the Internet to facilitate the world-wide communication and coordination so necessary for our survival.

The Internet's success in fulfilling this purpose depends on the principles which have driven its development: free and complete access for all people in all countries on earth; absolute privacy and security; basic software that is free, completely accessible and based on fully available source code; complete net neutrality and equality of Internet functionality; and the complete absence of censorship over all Internet communications.

These are the world's communication priorities. They feed democracy because democracy flows from this information. We believe that these principles enhance development because without basic infrastructural development, these goals cannot be achieved. (They enrich the potential for coping with such challenges as climate change because people can share information about their environmental challenges and the remedies they are developing. And they nurture the potential for world peace because, when people speak to each other over the din of government and corporate lies, we can reach agreements that benefit us all.)

The governments of the world must unite in supporting these principles. The people of the world are uniting to fight for them. We are proud to be part of that fight.