Oftentimes, it is when we lose touch with something is when we realize how much it has actually become part of our lives. The Internet has only been with us for a generation or so, yet many of us now wonder how we’ve ever existed without it. The Internet’s growing speed, accessibility, reliability and the freedom it allows us all to hear different voices and speak to them as well has made us more informed, insightful and willing to share opinions nearly instantaneously. Such is the power of the Internet in our lives.

This is why IID supports the Philippine Declaration of Internet Rights and Principles that we launch today. IID believes that these rights and principles are valuable and worthwhile. In civil society’s work in general and IID’s peace building, conflict prevention and solidarity work, the Internet and social media have both been a powerful stage and tool for our advocacies. IID also believes we must all remain vigilant as this new platform unfurls and connects us, and the rest of the world. We must ensure that the democratic space now afforded us by the Internet, in its content, operational parameters, and even its infrastructure, should remain open, democratic and accessible to all. Ensuring this now becomes one of our tasks.

With the Internet emerging as the new platform of democratic space and expression helping humankind shape its emerging dialogue and discourse, IID expresses solidarity with all stakeholders who support this declaration. Let us support and popularize the Philippine Declaration of Internet Rights and Principles. Through our collective vigilance and advocacy, let us ensure that the Internet remains free and unfettered for all. Padayon!