Thank you for your interest in the Asia Internet Coalition (AIC). There are some things you need to know before joining us.
MEMBERS and FRIENDS
There are two categories of participation: MEMBERS and FRIENDS. Please tick which category you are applying for.
- MEMBERS: Any corporation with an Internet-related business in at least two (2) locations in the Asia Pacific region can apply to be a Member of the AIC. Once you are accepted as an AIC member, you will be able to take part in all AIC activities, attend, propose a motion and vote at any AIC general meeting. Member fees are USD30,000 annually, payable on the approval of your application, and thereafter, upon renewal of your status as a member.
- FRIENDS: Any local business, non-profit organisation, trade association or industry co-operative in the Asia Pacific region which is making great use of the Internet to grow its business can apply to be a Friend of the AIC. There is no fee to become a Friend but (unlike AIC Members) a Friend of AIC will not get to participate in AIC general meetings nor be involved in charting AIC’s policy directions.
AIC POLICY POSITIONS
In submitting this application on behalf of your company/organisation, you are also agreeing to AIC’s shared values listed below:
- When it comes to user privacy, our approach is based on transparency, control and security because we believe that’s what matters to our users.
- We know from experience that privacy means different things to different people. So the best approach is to be upfront about what data you collect and how you use it, and then give meaningful controls that allow users to exercise their judgment and make an informed choice.
- We don’t collect personal information or serve ads based on personal information without user permission.
- The manner by which user consent is sought and obtained should avoid being too prescriptive. Rather, we believe that co-regulation (joint efforts between government and industry) to educate users about these mechanisms would be most effective.
Copyright and Trademarks
The AIC supports copyright laws that protect artists and foster innovation in new online services that help people create, distribute, and engage information.
- Provide flexible limitations that allow the online environment to function: New technologies won’t be built if every innovation requires an amendment to the copyright laws. As internet companies, we are also keen on retail competition and an open market, thereby ensuring that the public have access and choice to legal products at a great value.
- Ensure online platforms’ responsibilities are appropriately limited: Online services shouldn’t be held legally responsible for copyright infringing content created by Internet users, so long as they take that content down after receiving a valid notice from a content owner.
- Enforce copyright protections in a smart, tailored, and proportional way: Enforcement is important, but it should be tailored to avoid chilling legitimate innovation and expression. Enforcement without exceptions would throttle internet startup companies and many existing companies in Asia that depend on the internet for their primary and secondary source of income.
- Support efficient licensing mechanisms: When it’s hard to license copyrighted works efficiently, that’s bad for artists, consumers, and service providers alike. And where works are “orphaned” — such that you can’t contact the rightsholder — then the law should permit re-use.
Net Neutrality/Open Standards
What makes the Internet an engine of economic growth is its inherent openness and interoperability at every level of the network. AIC members have a commercial interest in, and a philosophical commitment to, the open Internet. This means that anyone can use a device and plug in. Any service can be created on top of it. Anyone with a connection to the network can communicate with anyone else on the network. These basic concepts enabled innovators to build sites and services unimaginable just a few years ago.
A good scenario for network neutrality should include these broad principles –
- Prohibition on blocking of all legal content, applications and services
- Strong non-discriminatory provisions which would outlaw practices (such as economic and technical blocking) that prioritize / favor operator developed content over third-party content, applications and services
- A platform agnostic approach to net neutrality (i.e. applies to wireless, fixed line, mobile Internet etc)
We would support Government initiatives to adopt open standards and in some cases open source development so as to foster innovation. By contrast, other ‘cloud’ offerings require on-premise systems that are based on proprietary standards. Closed, proprietary systems constrain businesses’ choices and create lock-in. Open systems give customers more choice, reduce lock-in, increase inter-operability, and allow third parties to build functionality on top of open platforms
Cloud computing is about moving everyday information, tools and processes online. Applications (email, word processing, etc.) are delivered over the web, through a browser. No servers to set up, no client software to install. The reason that we call it the ‘cloud’ is because all this information is kept in a virtual space on the Internet. By putting email, documents, calendars and other information in a secure spot online, users can access their information from anywhere they might be, anytime they need it, from any device that’s connected to the internet. Cloud computing is what best enables collaboration — because these documents, photo albums, calendars etc. live online, you can invite multiple people to work on them together at the same time.
Content Regulation/Intermediary Liability
The AIC believes that Internet access is a human right and that restricting the flow of information through Internet blackouts is a violation of this right.
When governments block a legitimate Internet site, impose improper licensing conditions, or erect other barriers, they impede technology and the ability of members of the AIC to provide core services. Very simply, when our services are blocked or filtered, we cannot serve our users effectively.
The AIC reject the premise that intermediaries should be held liable for refusing to take action on requests to remove content that would limit universal access.