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Social contract for the internet community? Historical and philosophical theories as basis for the inclusion of civil society in internet governance?


Weber, Rolf H; Weber, Romana (2009). Social contract for the internet community? Historical and philosophical theories as basis for the inclusion of civil society in internet governance? SCRIPT-ed:90-105.

Abstract

Netizens are affected by decisions taken with regard to Internet governance and should therefore be able to influence such. However, the heterogenity of Internet users requires special efforts in order to find a method of consensus building which includes all interested parties and creates the opportunity to make decisions acceptable for as large a part of the civil community as possible. Notwithstanding the fact that the Internet society is a newly emerging civil society, considerations taken into account in earlier contexts can lead to valuable lessons. In this respect, a theory which seems to offer a feasible approach encompasses the concept of a so-called “social contract” that is historically and philosophically addressing issues of civil society’s participation. Through the establishment of a civil society, each individual is protected by the whole of the community. The inclusion of civil society requires the implementation of a bottom-up process allowing responsiveness of the concerned actors in a rational discourse which improves democratic quality of the structures. Furthermore, each individual should be granted with the same rights and obligations in the sense of the same chance to development for everyone, in particular with respect to the use of freedom by having the social contract which secures the self-determination of all individuals. Furthermore, a new forum should be created which could realise appropriate fairness in all decision-making matters.

Abstract

Netizens are affected by decisions taken with regard to Internet governance and should therefore be able to influence such. However, the heterogenity of Internet users requires special efforts in order to find a method of consensus building which includes all interested parties and creates the opportunity to make decisions acceptable for as large a part of the civil community as possible. Notwithstanding the fact that the Internet society is a newly emerging civil society, considerations taken into account in earlier contexts can lead to valuable lessons. In this respect, a theory which seems to offer a feasible approach encompasses the concept of a so-called “social contract” that is historically and philosophically addressing issues of civil society’s participation. Through the establishment of a civil society, each individual is protected by the whole of the community. The inclusion of civil society requires the implementation of a bottom-up process allowing responsiveness of the concerned actors in a rational discourse which improves democratic quality of the structures. Furthermore, each individual should be granted with the same rights and obligations in the sense of the same chance to development for everyone, in particular with respect to the use of freedom by having the social contract which secures the self-determination of all individuals. Furthermore, a new forum should be created which could realise appropriate fairness in all decision-making matters.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:02 Faculty of Law > Institute of Legal Sciences > Business Law
Dewey Decimal Classification:340 Law
Language:English
Date:2009
Deposited On:22 Mar 2010 12:04
Last Modified:07 Dec 2017 01:58
Publisher:AHRC Research Centre for Studies in Intellectual Property and Technology Law
ISSN:1744-2567
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.2966/scrip.060109.90
Related URLs:http://www.law.ed.ac.uk/ (Publisher)
http://opac.nebis.ch/F/?local_base=NEBIS&con_lng=GER&func=find-b&find_code=SYS&request=005391763

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