Read or download Geneva Digital Watch: Issue 2, July 2015

About Digital Watch: You receive hundreds of pieces of information on digital politics. We receive them, too. We decode, contextualise, and analyse them. Then we summarise them for you.

You can add your own ingredients to the cooking recipe: How to draft a digital policy speech? (excerpt from Issue 2 of the Geneva Digital Watch Newsletter - page 8).

After watching many demonstrations of verbal dexterity in the digital policy events in May and June (WSIS Forum, CSTD, WSIS+10, ICANN), and inspired by the wonderful Geneva Perception team cookbook: Recipes for Peace, Rights and Well-being, our speech-writing cooks have come up with the following recipe for writing a digital policy speech, guaranteed to satisfy all appetites and keep your audience coming back for more.

  • Mix a handful of Internet opportunities with a handful of challenges, taking care to balance them carefully.
  • Select from the almost limitless larder of risks and threats, taking care to add one sweet ingredient for every savoury one - for example, security and privacy.
  • To fully engage with the audience, liberally sprinkle with the terms ‘multistakeholder’ or ‘multistakeholderism’ - it’s a popular ingredient that many would love to have more of. If you’re out of multistakeholderism you can substitute with inclusiveness.
  • For a touch of spice that might be too hot for some to handle, add measures of gender and youth.
  • To neutralise the spice, consider a cup of net neutrality.
  • Throw in a few first names of people everyone should know but no one is sure that they do, and don’t add last names - this will pique people’s interest.
  • No digital speech would be complete without a healthy topping of paternal references to Vint Cerf or another father of the Internet.
  • Gain credibility by adding a teaspoon of techie slang - particularly if you’ve never cooked before.
  • Additional credibility can be gained by the smart mixing of three ingredients in the form of Venn diagrams. Chose any. If in doubt, cybersecurity, human rights and business would work.
  • If you run out of ideas, add ‘connect the dots’ or look for the ‘weakest link’ if you want to add a cybersecurity taste.
  • And don’t forget those acronyms. Here you walk a delicate line between creating a mysterious taste or losing your audience entirely.

Mix well. Smile constantly. Add the occasional rueful shrug. Deliver with confidence.

Please enrich this recipe with your suggestions.  

Related actors:

The Geneva Internet Platform is an initiative of the Swiss authorities


Members of the Steering Committee are FDFA, OFCOM and the Canton of Geneva

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