Get the G8 to Protect the Net

Received by e-mail, From: AccessNow, Date: May 19, 2011. –

For the first time, the leaders of the G8 developed countries are going to discuss the internet’s role in society and the economy at their annual meeting next week in France. Worryingly, the French government — which holds the G8 rotating presidency this year — has largely shut out civil society and the interests of users like us.

Instead, the Heads of State of some of the most powerful nations are going to be advised by corporate CEOs, many of whom have paid $100,000 just for a seat at the table. From documents leaked by official invitees and our contacts with French activists, the discussions at this year’s G8 meetings are going to focus on issues like strict intellectual property enforcement instead of citizen-centered policies like net neutrality, privacy protection, and combating online censorship.

Unless we speak out now, decisions about internet policy are going to be made at the highest levels without our voices represented. Please sign this urgent petition calling on the G8 leaders to adopt sensible, citizen-centered internet policies, starting with saying NO to online censorship and the internet kill switch and YES to net neutrality and expanding internet access for all, which we’ll deliver at a press conference to the assembled world media on Monday in Paris.

In concert with other civil society organizations from around the world working towards the promotion of internet freedom, digital rights, and open communication, Access has been fighting to get press and public attention about the deals that governments and corporations are likely to strike next week.

That’s why we’re penning a letter to French President Sarkozy, dispatching one of our team to Paris to deliver your petition, taking part in a press conference, and educating key government representatives ahead of the meeting, but it’s going to take a global outcry to influence these key decision makers, so please sign the petition to defend our digital rights!

Sign the petition: For internet freedom.

The Access Team

P.S. After thousands of you from over 75 countries joined Access’s Worm in the Apple Campaign about mobile location tracking, we took your petition to Washington, met with top decision makers at the Senate Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology, and Law, and we’re continuing to push the US Government to reform critical privacy laws that affect users all over the world. Already another hearing has been set to delve further into these issues.

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