United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Moscow
Director, Alexandre Gorelik attended an open meeting of the organizing committee of the “Year of Safe Internet in the Russian Federation" on 25 August 2009. The event was devoted to taking stock of the progress accomplished in the first six months of the Committee’s activities and exploring avenues for further action.
Alexandre Gorelik, UNIC Moscow Director at the open meeting of the Organizing Committee
The meeting was held under the chairmanship of the Deputy Minister of Telecommunications and Mass Communications Mr. Alexei Soldatov (which testified to the government’s awareness of the subject’s importance), and was attended by a number of leading members of the ICT community, experts, officials from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and other institutions, mass-media and civil society activists. According to the progress report of the Committee, the body was up and running and had successfully implemented a wide range of communications, advocacy and educational activities. Panelists reviewed children’s online behavior, cases of harmful and illegal content, cyber bullying, and stressed that threats must be addressed by all actors, including policy-makers, regulators, parents and educators, as well as the industry. In his brief comments, the UNIC Director stressed the United Nations’ interest towards the protection of children in the cyberspace. Among other things, he also reminded the audience of the Guidelines on child online protection to be presented at ITU Telecom World, 5-9 October, in Geneva, and invited the Committee to consider how best to publicize the original Russian experience at the global gathering.
Participants at the meeting of the “Year of Safe Internet in the Russian Federation" Organizing Committee
A Work Plan for the second half of the Year of Safe Internet was adopted at the meeting. The Plan highlighted educational issues, the “train the trainers” programmes, an emphasis on the positive content (including all-Russian contest that may become an annual endeavor), advocacy activities targeting media and public-at-large, a number of studies and, finally, a concluding conference of the Year in February 2010.
The UNIC participation in the session was useful in terms of promoting the UN system’s views on a very topical issue. UNIC Moscow’s links with the organizing committee were then rather strong, which enabled Centre not only to follow activities of the Russian ICT community, but also to raise awareness of the international agenda and to stress the importance of collaboration with UN agencies.