Event Summary and Video

The 2018 GNI Public Learning Forum: “New World Borders: How Jurisdiction Affects Human Rights Online,” will take place at New America on Tuesday, 18 September, and will be co-hosted with the American Society for International Law and the Open Technology Institute.

Since 2012, GNI has hosted an annual Public Learning Forum, gathering members and outside experts to spotlight contemporary challenges for free expression and privacy in the ICT sector.

This year, two sessions will focus on the challenges jurisdictional issues pose for human rights online. Although the transfer of data across jurisdictions is a fundamental byproduct of the global, interoperable Internet, it can also put pressures on legal systems designed for the pre-Internet age. In some cases, this leads to government responses posing risks for freedom of expression and privacy.

Introduction and Welcome (9:00-9:15 am EDT)

Judith Lichtenberg, Executive Director, GNI
Sharon Bradford Franklin, Director of Surveillance and Cybersecurity Policy, New America’s Open Technology Institute
Wes Rist, Deputy Director, American Society for International Law

Session One: Cross-Border Access to Data (9:15–10:45 am EDT)

Government efforts to access data located in another jurisdiction primarily rely on government-to-government mechanisms. Perceptions that these avenues are too slow and/or cumbersome have spurred various government measures for cross-border access to data. The first panel will explore the legal and historical context of the existing Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties system, as well as its benefits and limitations, and compare the scope and implications of the different forms of “unilateral” measures and “bi/multilateral” frameworks for governments’ cross-border requests for user data. Speakers will include:

Jennifer Daskal, American University Washington College of Law
Sidsela Nyebak, Telenor Group
Greg Nojeim, Center for Democracy & Technology
Sharon Bradford Franklin, Open Technology Institute (moderator)

Session Two: Global Takedown Orders (11:00–12:30 pm EDT)

In recent years, regulators and courts in several different countries have attempted to compel Internet companies to limit the availability of content on their platforms to users in other countries or regions – even where the content at issue has not been deemed illegal and may be protected in those places. These decisions, which push the bounds of extraterritoriality in the exercise of jurisdiction by national authorities, have surfaced with respect to a variety of different categories of content. The second panel will discuss the legal and human rights principles implicated by such orders, understand the reasons why authorities have sought them, and explore the various implications they create for companies and users. Speakers will include:

Anupam Chander, Georgetown University Law Center
Emma Llanso, Center for Democracy and Technology
Jessica Dheere, Social Media Exchange
Mark MacCarthy, Software & Information Industry Association
Arturo Carillo, GW Law (moderator)

Concluding Remarks (12:30-12:45 pm EDT)

David Sullivan, Director of Learning and Development, GNI

Event Details

Tuesday, September 18, 2018, 9:00 AM – 1:30 PM (Add to Calendar)
**Coffee, tea, and light refreshments will be offered in the morning, and lunch will be served at the conclusion of the event**  

New America
740 15th Street NW, Suite 900, Washington, D.C. (Map)