Press release - 363(2010)

EuroDIG: Europe´s strong views on openness and responsibility

Madrid, 03.05.2010 – The Internet should be a space, where users, operators and governments have clear rights and responsibilities. Open access to content and services, avoiding over-regulation, and the promotion of democratic processes online were underlined as part of the public value of the Internet. These were some of the key messages delivered at the third European Dialogue on Internet Governance held in Madrid on 29-30 April.

Some 300 representatives from the private sector, governments, parliaments, civil society, the media, governments and institutions, including 10 national Internet governance forums, held an open dialogue about the hottest issues concerning the governance of the Internet.

There was an intense debate on various topics such as net neutrality, privacy protection, and the online content policies in Europe, notably on liability – who is responsible for what on the Internet. The extent of the role of Internet service providers in respect of the blocking of content was a contentious issue. With regard to fighting child pornography online, the blocking of websites carried out in some European countries was considered as only “the second best solution” to taking down these websites.

In the opening session, Philippe Boillat, Director General of Human Rights and Legal Affairs of the Council of Europe -,which provides secretariat support to the EuroDIG - considered it opportune to invite the US State Department to the Council of Europe to discuss creative solutions to issues such as cross-border Internet traffic, the responsibilities of the private sector vis-à-vis privacy and data protection, as well as government attempts to regulate the Internet.

An important novelty of this edition was that 60 participants followed the event and intervened via remote participation hubs in 10 cities, most of them in Eastern European countries.

The EuroDIG debates will serve to prepare the contributions of European stakeholders to the Internet Governance Forum to be held in Lithuania in September.

The conference was organised by the Spanish IGF (Internet Governance Forum), the Council of Europe and the Swiss Federal Office of Communication (OFCOM) together with a number of other stakeholders, with the support of Telefónica and Fundación Telefónica, the Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Commerce of Spain (through and the City of Madrid, coinciding with the Spanish Presidency of the European Union.

Summaries of the discussions of the workshops can be found at,

Press contacts: Jaime Rodríguez, Council of Europe, +Mobile +33 (0) 689 99 50 42,

Council of Europe Directorate of Communication
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 25 60
Fax:+33 (0)3 88 41 39 11