As a civil society representative and Treasurer of the Native Public Media (NPM) Board of Directors, Matthew Rantanten delivered closing remarks at the annual meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) on December 17, 2017 in Geneva, Switzerland calling for the inclusion and consultation of tribal and native communities in regards to Tribal connectivity.
NPM has a strong international policymaking record in media and broadband inclusion that includes representation at IGF and the International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).
Rantanen remarked, “[I]ndigenous populations are a part of the next 3.5 billion Internet users that are not being included in the process that is deciding their fate. We are willing and able to contribute, and we know our needs. Policymakers have the responsibility to remove barriers to indigenous community networking, not imposing their preconceived notions on what they feel those communities need without proper consultation and inclusion of the indigenous people in the decision-making process.”
View Rantanen’s remarks in the full IGC Closing Ceremony here.
Rantanen is the Director of Technology for the Southern California Tribal Chairmen's Association, which includes the Tribal Digital Village – a wireless network that provides services to 17 reservations in California.
The IGF is a forum for multi-stakeholder dialogue on public policy issues related to key elements of Internet governance issues, such as the Internet's sustainability, robustness, security, stability and development. The United Nations Secretary-General formally announced the establishment of the IGF in July 2006 and the first meeting was convened in October/November 2006.