- Predrag TASEVSKI
Usually May in Stockholm is cold, chilly and indeed refreshing. However, this year the weather surprised all the participants of Stockholm Internet Forum 2014. Although it is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, it was even more with rising sun every day. Especially coming from Nice where the weather was under storm, and sunny and long days in Stockholm were unforgettable. Before I continue with description and the nature of this year SIF, first would like to apologize for late post – I was under busy with examination, second would like to thank the organization for selecting me as a valuable participant.
Being in Stockholm for the second time it is a privilege. And indeed, this year SIF surprised me with the invitation. Usually the organizers are selecting each year new participant. From their explanation only 10% of previous year participants are invited where the rest are new. Consequently, there were around 450 participants, from different countries in this year SIF14. Nonetheless, it was an event for great opportunities for networking and meeting interesting people, or see the rear ones from the previous year.
Speaking of which the event and the panel discussions I might say that I’m a bit disappointed, because of the repeating of the participant from SIF13. Another point that I would like to stress out regarding the event is that in this event the participants are not only a hacktivists, policy makers, whistleblowers, activities, NGO, etc., but also companies and so forth. I love the idea of selecting for each panel to have one enterprise represent, however bear in mind that people will might exploit this and take and pursue a totally different aspect of the discussion. Therefore, I suggest for the organization to select wisely the enterprise panelists. For instance, make sure that the topic and the theme of the panels are emphasized and understood by the wide audience, as well as that the chair man and the panelists will control the floor and that the topic will not go outside of content. This is due to this event, some panel discussions were totally misunderstood by the audience and indeed some participants were frustrated, for instance me, but also many others.
Furthermore, coming back to the selection of percentage of the participant. I frankly love the idea that you like to bring different audience and different people each year event, however in my opinion and as well as from other that we discussed during the event is that will be much better that from the 10% is either 15-20%. This is due to fact that most if the time these topics and events only and usually bring new topics and questions, and not give answers to them. So in this respect you will have a continuing discussions and most probably some answers, coupled with outcome.
Also I would like to take an opportunity to respond to the participant that were emphasizing the participation of one of the hot topic and indeed well known person, today – Edward Snowden. In respect to their request where is Snowden and so on, I would like to point out few things: first in international law it is firstly impossible to bring him in Sweden because of his status in Russia; moreover there is no need for him to take participation in the event where we talk about freedom of Internet, as well as the espionage, privacy, policy, etc.
To sum, again thanks to the organization for inviting me once again to the event. Second, by taking into account the above suggestions, personally thing that the event will be more progressive, as well as proactive by having outcome. Further, bring people, panelists which are wisely selected compliance to the topic and theme of the event and/or discussion. In the end, looking forward seeing you in the next year, as well hope that I will be taking place this time as one of panelist. Where not only that I could contribute with the discussion but also bring some new important questions in the podium.