In April 2018, the U.K. Select Committee launched a public inquiry titled “The Internet: to regulate or not to regulate?” in order to explore “how Internet regulation could be improved, including through better self-regulation and governance, and whether a new regulatory framework for the Internet is necessary or whether the general law of the U.K. is adequate.”

In GNI’s submission to this consultation, we acknowledge that “novel and unique” challenges that emerge from rapid evolutions in technology may require equally “novel and unique” legal and policy responses. We emphasized that “regulation” can encompass a wide spectrum of possible ways forward, which are most effective when “carefully considered, evidence-based, and developed in consultation with experts and stakeholders.”

While GNI’s multistakeholder initiative focuses on situations where companies face government restrictions that pose risks for users’ rights, we note how initiatives like GNI demonstrate one useful form of “regulation:” “voluntary commitments by companies, informed by and assessed in collaboration with other stakeholders.” Our written evidence outlines GNI’s Principles, structure, and activities and explains how they set a standard for the ICT sector broadly, ensure transparency, accountability, and good governance of member companies, and foster shared learning and policy collaboration among all members.

The full submission can be found here.