Category Archives: Internet

14 Memories from my ICANN Fellowship Experience

P.S: Allow sometime for the Gif to Load 🙂 

1. My reaction when I finally made it to the Fellowship List! anigif_enhanced-buzz-14062-1386449562-12Source:

It was not Singapore, It was not London but it was Los Angeles!

2. First, Thanks to Joseph for the support and BCD travel for booking window seats in Emirates.anigif_enhanced-buzz-13421-1374711194-0Source:

And for Coordinating and managing all our travel trips!

3. And Thanks to Jet Lag. ErrGIF-Wake-up-earlySource:

4. Kidding, The first day morning I  was like..tumblr_inline_nbyydqRHOn1ss32phSource:

5. And when Fadi Chehade delivered his opening ceremony speech to an audience of over 2000 it was WOW!Goose_BumpsSource:

6. When everyone said the ICANN ecosystem is complex and it takes New comers sometime to get used to it, I was confident of proving everyone wrong. 20Source:

7. At the end of a long day, when we finally understood something.anigif_enhanced-buzz-12150-1386451785-18Source:

Oh Yes, This is Impressive!

8. Finally! Music Night happened and Mama J set the floor on Fire!anigif_enhanced-buzz-31573-1414781263-19Source:


9. The next day morning! 355Source:

10. Guided by our level headed mentor Sarah, Who kept us “Sane”, We all bonded together and formed a formidable force called SMACK. 549477756_188721Source:

From Left to Right: Marilia, Carlton, Osama, Sarah, Krishna, Aida and Random Penguin.

11. We were tired but we were determined and passionate to learn more from the sessions.  11Source:

12. And on the last day I was like,


Naah, I am not emotional.

13. ICANN is a Family            output_re50YSSource: Omars Cam and Credits to the humble soul who clicked this moment

(Moving on to some serious stuff) Having been a beneficiary of the open internet, My primary motive to attend an ICANN Fellowship meeting was because I believe in the concept of one Internet and wanted to get a firsthand experience on how the medium I love functions with its unique Multistakeholder model. To me, the Multistakeholder model is the logical enhancement to any democratic society. I see it as the next step to evolve from the age-old top-down decision making process that has consciously kept people away while making key decisions that affect everyone. Looking back, the first thing I remember is the Ice breaker mail from Janice and warm wishes from the ICANN returning fellows into the community which I found very welcoming. I got free consultation from alumnus Edwin (ICANN 50) and Zakir (ICANN 49) on what to expect and how to prepare for the fellowship. When I had no clue on filling the bank forms and other details, Kwasi immediately sent a mail and helped me with it. Once I got introduced to my mentor and team, there was no looking back. We were able to collaborate via mail and discuss on issues and our expectations from the ICANN meet. Our Mentor Sarah constantly sent us mails with links to study materials to ensure we weren’t getting laid back in our approach.

When I had to figure out my stay for the additional day, Valentina pitched in with airbnb suggestions and Seun with his own room. However, I landed 8 hours earlier than Seun and still had to find a place to hangout. I met Sonam when he was going through the Hotel address in Super Shuttle and that was enough for us to get acquainted. He offered me his room for the time being, which I accepted with no second thoughts. Here I am talking about people with whom I had no previous interaction and had no time to build any form of trust but the fact that I have been chosen for this fellowship was sufficient enough for them to trust and help me. It was a reflection of trust that they have on ICANN, more than me, which I found beautiful.

Over the week, right from the Hotel staff who helped me find my way each time I was lost to Steve Crocker, who was kind enough to answer our questions and pose multiple times to our photo requests, I met humble people who were willing to spend time and share their knowledge with the community. I was left overwhelmed by the amount of effort that every member has put in from their free time to participate and keep the Internet together, Very much in line with the ethos of Internet that has fueled its growth so far. I feel the ICANN Fellowship is an opportunity that was presented to me at the right time that has not only broadened my understanding on how the Internet functions but has also helped me figure out on where I would fit in and how I can contribute back to the community.

To sum it up, my first ICANN meeting was all about the wonderful people I got to meet from all around the world. Be it the long walk to Beverly Hills or drinking Pumpkin beer and uttering sentence that made no sense or the wonderful book that I got as gift or Visiting Bj’s frequently and nagging their staff for a separate bill for everyone or the secret lunch that was arranged by our anonymous friend or winning the Foosball game during Music night or the random moment when I ended up throwing Ice cubes on a bowl of fire, There was never a second I regretted during the ICANN meet. We bonded and made wonderful memories together, hence I stand firm with my heading – ICANN is a family. Like every family, ICANN too is not perfect, it is complicated. However, it has people who understand Internet, who love Internet, who have worked for Internet all their lives and people who will pass on that knowledge to us to Keep the Internet as One and that is what I believe powers the whole Multistakeholder model which I am proud to be a part of.

Note: I did attend the scheduled sessions based on my interest from 7 AM – 6 PM, details of which are still being processed inside my head and kept confidential 😉

14. This post is dedicated to our wonderful Mama J. MAMA J Credits: Omar (Our unofficial Photographer!)

Thank you so much for taking care of us and this wonderful Experience!

In the age of Transhumanism, Giving up your data is giving up your Mind

We are perhaps the last generation of humans standing on the boundary drawn between humans and their upgraded versions, analyzing and debating on how we make a successful and ethical transition to our upgraded version “the H+”. While many ethical questions remain on dehumanizing the human race, it is good to take care of our available rights from the beginning to avoid absolute submission when the transition takes place.

Our lives are digitized, what we type, what we speak, what we read, what we shop, every minute detail gets digitized and stored forever, with companies creating more and more variations of handheld personal assistants, voice assistants and wearable gadgets that can monitor our interactions, health and enhance our thinking capabilities, It is imperative that we keep a track of what we share on these proprietary platforms that give complete control to its creator, irrespective of the amount that we pay to own them.


In the age of transhumanism, giving up your data is giving up your mind, When Eric Schmidt, proudly says,

We can suggest what you should do next, what you care about. Imagine: We know where you are, we know what you like

he means the unquestioned submission by the human race under the false perception of control over themselves and their devices. As the convergence of humans, internet and electronics take place, it is this exclusive access to our mind, taken out through the Internet and passed on to authority that is of serious concern.

With no laws to govern the Internet, no rights to be protected, the internet leaves its users more vulnerable than ever, to be plundered by data miners, big data analysts, government spy agencies and MNCs that for now play by the line of doing good. In the age of Transhumanism, when our digital profiles across platforms get consolidated, we are at the risk of allowing ourselves to be governed by one mind that takes control of all these developments.

As Bruce Schneier puts it,

For if we are observed in all matters, we are constantly under threat of correction, judgment, criticism, even plagiarism of our own uniqueness. We become children, fettered under watchful eyes, constantly fearful that — either now or in the uncertain future — patterns we leave behind will be brought back to implicate us, by whatever authority has now become focused upon our once-private and innocent acts. We lose our individuality, because everything we do is observable and recordable.

Take Control. Share Wisely.

Internet is the new Oil; Your Liberty is its payment.

Dear People,

Even before we realize the power of Internet, It is being usurped by various interest groups that never project themselves in the mainstream. Be it the ITU, Independent UN body, Individual governments etc. the main focus is on who gets to control the Internet.
As we share our contents everyday, “like” our friends statuses and comment on photographs, there are organizations that project themselves as saviors of internet and get support from similar organizations and form a network within themselves. They then negotiate with governments across the world to push for their policies. It gets deeper and more sophisticated every year as we turn a blind eye to whats happening around us.

Everything happens secretly and without considering public opinion. They don’t consider public opinion because it has been that way all the time. They are pretty sure that we will accept everything in the name of law and act civilized within the set of rules framed by them. Which in other words is “Liberty” in real world.  The freedom that we enjoy in the virtual medium is slowly but skillfully being pushed in to a closed cage by projecting  “terrorism” “cyber war” “abuse” etc. as our immediate threats.


Too soon, we will have balloons flying over our heads, white spaces penetrating trees and mountains, providing seamless connectivity, access, interactions, etc. Everything at the cost of our “Liberty”.

The dark age for internet is over. The Internet experiment is now moving to its next phase and it can be even more darker if we don’t act now.
The real concern is in allowing people to handle power by themselves.
Let us do something. 


“How long do we expect rational people to accept using terrorism to justify and excuse endless executive and state power?”- Actor John Cusack

“Everyone’s worried about stopping terrorism. Well, there’s really an easy way: Stop participating in it.”
– Noam Chomsky

The Fight for Internet: Let the battle begin!

Down through the centuries, this trick has been tried by various establishments throughout the world. They force people to get involved in the kind of examination that has only one aim and that is to stamp out dissent.

Pete Seeger

When the internet was introduced, we were all promised a level playing field which not only triggered information and digital revolution but also revolutions against oppressive regimes around the world, our voice only grew louder with everyone Jumping into the bandwagon to be part of this huge experimentation, to create a global community that would allow one to develop, cherish connections, be an entrepreneur, be an activist, have a voice and freedom of thought.
But, now that the results have come out and experiments have reached their conclusion part, its time for us to get back to our routine and follow orders, Immerse ourselves in unreal reality shows, read and watch opinions thrown at us. (At least that’s what we are doing now)
The World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) to be held in Dubai this December will be attended by 193 countries meeting to decide on the fate of internet which none of the media houses consider worth giving coverage. From hereon we will be mute spectators, Diverted from the main battlefield that would be fought between oppressive countries, corporate owned countries, anonymous and civil society activists. Perhaps its the disinterest of a majority of people that provides support to improper governance and corruption and its interesting to watch how different governments frame each sentence in their proposals which promise no harm to liberty and freedom of its own citizens and yet shamelessly hang and suffocate freedom of speech in the real and digital medium. (P.S: Even if you “Like” it you will be put in Jail)
My question is “If people own the internet, Why are the serving governments fighting to gain control over the internet?”
Government actions across the world raises more concerns,
  • Do they really want us to speak or restrict ourselves from making any comments?
  • Are our freedoms restricted within the framed rules?
  • Is freedom all about hearing and watching what is thrown at us? and
  • Do governments serve people or people elect the government to serve them?
Back in the battlefield, while the corporate owned country want its corporate to thrive and retain power in the pretext of freedom to people, the oppressive regimes (not surprisingly, includes Russia, China, Brazil, India, Iran and plenty more) are lobbying for region specific restrictions on the internet. Though their ways are different, their motive is to bring an order to the chaotic internet space that’s ever-expanding and connecting people at a rapid pace, unimaginable.
What if the chaotic crowd in the internet realize that governments across the world do the same with different country names?  What if they realize their borders are only to divide and rule? and What if they protest at the same time across the world? This can be facilitated only by the people owned Internet medium and not by corporate owned media houses and hence it becomes necessary to put an end to the chaotic mob when it is distracted by celebrity gossips and trivial issues.
So will the governments gain control over the boundary less crowd ? or will there be  a common ground to work on?
All depends on the active participation of the real stake holders, the 2.45 billion people who use the internet to connect but if the participating governments prefer to neglect the billion stakeholders, Revolution is the only option.

Power to the People.

Take action!
Sign and Pledge your support: