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IGF ISOC supports Internet growth in the developing world

ISOC supports Internet growth in the developing world
Presence of the global Internet community in Brazil symbolises role of developing online populations in the Internet’s future

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL, 14 November 2007 - The Internet Society (ISOC) today welcomed the presence of a global Internet event in Brazil as recognition of the energy and creativity that people in emerging Internet markets can bring to the Internet community.

"I am very happy to be here in Brazil for the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) this week as one of the representatives of the Internet community," said Lynn St. Amour, President and CEO of the Internet Society.

"It is an exciting time for the Internet,” said St. Amour. “Brazil and other countries with developing economies and huge populations - such as China and India - are now major drivers of global Internet expansion. As these economies emerge, we look forward to their engineers, developers, and entrepreneurs also continuing to emerge as creative forces in the Internet community."

“Facilitating the next billion Internet users should be one of the overarching goals of the IGF and of all stakeholder organisations involved in the Internet space.”

ISOC plays an important role, with many initiatives aimed at supporting the developing world. For instance, it provides a generous Fellowship Programme to help technologists from developing countries attend Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) meetings, where the major Internet standards and operational practices are developed. These fellowships have the dual benefit of building capacity in local communities and broadening the perspectives represented in the standards development process.

ISOC also conducts a broad education programme with a strong focus on emerging economies, in particular the Country Code Top Level Domain (ccTLD) workshops, involvement with regional network operator groups, participation in the FRIDA digital innovation grants program in Latin America, and support for various Internet capacity building events worldwide.

To further increase its support for local Internet communities, ISOC has recently established its first Regional Bureaus, for Africa and for Latin America and the Caribbean, with plans to establish an Asian Bureau soon.

Sebastián Bellagamba, Manager of ISOC’s Latin America and Caribbean Regional Bureau, explains that ISOC has a global membership base, with a growing representation from this region.

"Both individuals and organisations become ISOC members," said Bellagamba. "Groups of members often form ISOC Chapters - voluntary associations that share a common location or interest. Already we have eight active chapters in Latin America, doing great work in spreading awareness and education of the Internet, building capacity, and informing policy makers in their countries."

"The Internet has always been driven by the energy and ideas of those who actually use it," says Bellagamba. "It’s great to see so many new users getting online now in Latin America and I really look forward to the energy, ideas, and surprising innovations they will surely bring."
About ISOC

The Internet Society (www.isoc.org) is a not-for-profit organisation founded in 1992 to provide leadership in Internet related standards, education, and policy. With offices in Washington, DC, and Geneva, Switzerland, it is dedicated to ensuring the open development, evolution, and use of the Internet for the benefit of people throughout the world.
About ISOC Chapters

Internet Society Chapters are groups organised by ISOC members on a volunteer basis and officially recognised by ISOC. Chapters bring together people who reside in a particular geographic region (such as a city, country, or larger area), or who share an interest in a specific Internet related subject.

The role of Chapters is to help ISOC achieve its mission at both local and regional levels and to infuse ISOC with local and regional perspectives on developments and issues that affect the evolution of the Internet.