8 Nov 2012
OII Professor Ian Brown comments on new trends in industry self-governance at the 2012 Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Azerbaijan. Brown begins by stating that multistakeholder governance, (with the IGF as a principal example), combined with industry self-regulation, (with a greater or lesser degree of government involvement), has been the default model for Internet regulation worldwide. Brown contends that this approach has some advantages in terms of attracting commitment from industry players, but it does not ensure that enough consideration is given to values such as accountability. Traditionally, the legislator has played this role, and Brown asks whether any lessons can be drawn from existing cases of self-regulation that complement and replace to some extent the role of government.