The GA work had two components. The former focused on administrative issues, such as reports on the work during the previous year and membership, while the later explored pertinent human rights questions, esp. privacy-related, on European level, and future EDRI actions referring to them.

By the time of this GA, EDRI had 25 members from 16 countries. A quorum of representatives of 18 organizations from 13 countries took part in the event, and accepted the membership applications of three new members—ANSOL from Portugal, Pangea from Catalonia, Spain, and EFF European office based in Belgium—raising the number of EDRI members to 28 from 17 countries, including three APC members (GreenNet, Metamorphosis, and Pangea).

The 2007 GA approved the progress reports submitted by the Board, stressing the importance and continuation of the EDRI-gram, the bi-weekly newsletter about digital civil rights in Europe. An unanimous vote by the delegates provided confirmation of the Board which is in the middle of two-year term.

Board President Meryem Marzouki provided a recap of some of the most prominent EDRI activities between the two GAs, which all focused on promotion of human rights and increasing the involvement of civil society in decision making. These included participation in initiatives related to international bodies, including the COE Cybercrime Conference, workshop on Nanotechnologies and Security, co-organized by DG Research of the European Commission (Nanotech unit). EDRI also has planned participation in events by COE, UNICEF, OECD and other.

EDRI also provided support of number of national or regional initiatives, such as the legal action from Digital Rights Ireland against Data Retention Directive, initiative against Data Retention SK by APC member Jimbonet from South Korea, IP Justice’s "Keep the core neutral" initiative.

EDRI also took part of the joint statement to WIPO on the Broadcast Treaty, organized a panel at the CFP 2006 with OSCE’s Representative on Freedom of the Media in Washington DC, received the positive Czech Big Brother Award, and took part in the International Conference e-Society.Mk in Macedonia, providing reach in the South Eastern European region.

Future issues on EDRI’s agenda include civic actions and projects for protection of human rights based on preliminary analysis by task forces and working groups in the areas of: Internet and telecommunications content filtering, privacy of payment systems, data retention, and biometrics.

Besides the work agenda, the GA, hosted in the lovely Newthinking Store, provided opportunities for the diverse representatives to get each other better, supplementing the existing collaboration over the internet with face-to-face interaction.


Source: APC Blogs, 13.09.2007.