|World Internet Conference|
|Inaugurated||November 19, 2014|
|Organized by||Cyberspace Administration of China|
Provincial government of Zhejiang
|World Internet Conference|
The World Internet Conference (WIC, simplified Chinese: 世界互联网大会; traditional Chinese: 世界互聯網大會; pinyin: Shìjiè Hùliánwǎng Dàhuì), also known as the Wuzhen Summit (乌镇峰会; 烏鎮峰會; Wūzhèn Fēnghuì), is an annual event, first held in 2014, organized by the Chinese government to discuss global Internet issues and policies. It is organized by the Cyberspace Administration of China.
At the first World Internet Conference in 2014, an unknown party distributed a draft joint statement affirming the right of individual nations to develop, use, and govern the Internet, a concept Chinese Communist Party (CCP) general secretary and paramount leader Xi Jinping calls cyber sovereignty. Attendees received a draft of the statement overnight, slid under their hotel doors. As some objected to the statement, the organizers made no mention of it in the conference's final day.
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2nd World Internet Conference
The second World Internet Conference in 2015 was attended by notable figures including co-founder of Alibaba Group Jack Ma, Chinese leader Xi Jinping, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and the prime ministers of Pakistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. Xi promoted his concept of "Internet sovereignty", urging the world to "respect each country's Internet sovereignty, respect each country's right to choose their own development path and management model of the internet". Xi's speech was praised by Ma. The official Chinese media commented that Xi Jinping's speech showed China was bullish on Internet growth and China would build a "Digital Silk Road for Win-Win Cooperation-Information Infrastructure Partnership". The second World Internet Conference releases the Wuzhen Initiative, which calls on all countries to promote Internet development, foster cultural diversity in cyber space, share the fruits of Internet development, ensure peace and security in cyber space, and improve global Internet governance. However, the event was criticized by Amnesty International, which called on technology companies to boycott the conference. Amnesty International urged tech firms to reject China's position, calling it an attempt to promote censorship (on fake news).
In December 2015, Fadi Chehadé announced that, after he leaves his post as ICANN CEO in March 2016, he will become co-chair of a newly formed advisory committee to the World Internet Conference. The first meeting of the committee will take place in mid 2016.
4th World Internet Conference
In December 2017, the 4th annual conference was held in China. Apple Inc.'s Tim Cook and Google's Sundar Pichai made their first appearances at Wuzhen Summit. A Qualcomm director gave a keynote speech about advances of 5g and AI. Bob Kahn, known as one of the fathers of the Internet, addresses the opening ceremony.
5th World Internet Conference
6th World Internet Conference
The 6th edition of the World Internet Conference was held on October 20–21, 2019, with the theme of "Joining Hands in Constructing a Community of Shared Future in Cyberspace" (携手构建网络空间命运共同体).
Lack of open access
The 2015 World Internet Conference organizers denied entry to reporters for certain U.S. media outlets, such as The New York Times. In response, Reporters Without Borders called for a boycott of the 2015 World Internet Conference.
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- "China Delivers Midnight Internet Declaration — Offline". China Real Time Report. 2014-11-21. Retrieved 2015-12-16.
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- Handley, Lucy (2018-11-09). "The 'world's first' A.I. news anchor has gone live in China". CNBC. Retrieved 2019-01-28.
- "携手构建网络空间命运共同体 (Joining hands in constructing a community of shared future in cyberspace)". Official Website of the World Internet Conference (Chinese). WIC organizing committee. 2019-10-16.
- Zeng, Vivienne (2015-12-15). "Not shared by all? China blocks New York Times from World Internet Conference". Hong Kong Free Press. Retrieved 2015-12-16.
- Carsten, Paul (2015-12-16). "China calls for Internet front to fight hacking, cyber 'arms race'". Reuters. Retrieved 2015-12-16.