Macron and tech giants launch Paris call to fix web woes

Microsoft was among the US tech giants joining with France to call for more nations and corporates to adhere to new internet regulations and do more in the global fight against cyber crime, online censorship and hateful dialogue online, CNBC reports.

 At an international convening on cyber security principles in Paris, Emmanuel Macron put his cards on the table with the launch of a document called “Paris call for trust and security in cyber-space”. The French President hopes the initiative will reenergise momentum for much-needed internet regulation after negotiations broke down last year.

While many European nations support Macron’s message and its cause, China and Russia remain uncommitted as global demand grows for more robust reinforcements against hacking and instances of cyber crime that threaten to influence political systems and compromise the security of trade secrets.

Tech giants are behind the latest push for more regulation in Paris, but French officials have redrafted the documentation to factor in recent contributions made by UN experts.

An official statement coming from the French president’s office said:

 “The internet is a space currently managed by a technical community of private players. But it’s not governed. So now that half of humanity is online, we need to find new ways to organise the internet.”

“Otherwise, the internet as we know it today — free, open and secure — will be damaged by the new threats.”

The documentation’s launch comes a day after Remembrance Sunday and global commemorations on the 100th anniversary of the end of World War one. Macron hopes to harness the occasion’s groundswell of unity and peace to encourage cooperation among nations in the fight against increasing nationalist sentiment, much of which is stoked through messages of hatred broadcast online.

Due to a perceived threat to US sovereignty, the White House remains reluctant to join international efforts to implement more stringent internet regulation.

However, French officials have said that tech giants such as Facebook and Google would commit to the new directives.

Another French government spokesperson said:

“The American ecosystem is very involved. It doesn’t mean that in the end the U.S. federal government won’t join us, talks are continuing, but the U.S. will be involved under other forms.”

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