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Testimonial of Souphavady Praseuth, an APTLD Fellow to APIGA 2019
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Testimonial of Souphavady Praseuth, an APTLD Fellow to APIGA 2019

It has been a wonderful
experience being part of the APIGA 2019 program under APTLD Fellowship.
APIGA is a 5-day program on Internet Governance that is very comprehensive and
fun learning experience for youth. From the day of arrival to Korea until the
day I finished off the training, I feel that was learning and getting new
experience everyday even in the group discussion with my peers were very
interesting.

Prior to the actual training, this program
had provided many online courses for the participants to complete. It has
introduction materials on every sessions of the training which provide us with backgrounds
and internet governance history. I feel that this is a very important step to
prepare ourselves for a fruitful discussion during discussion.

The
first day of the training was the opening ceremony, APIGA, KISA and ICANN gave opening
speech to welcome the participants from various countries. In the afternoon and
evening sessions, the speakers had presented the History of Internet Governance,
after that they have divided the classroom into small groups for brain storming
and presentation about today’s internet governance issues and how to resolve them
in our view. At the end of the first day, the facilitator presented on the
preparation of mock ICANN conference, that we will be doing for the last day.
We were also divided into 3 groups for group-work and better communication.

The second day, the first session was reviewing yesterday’s discussion.
The second session, the speaker introduced the definition and process of multi-stakeholder.
They also encouraging everyone to get involve and participate in ICANN
community to understand more about policy process. I remember the 3 main keywords in the development of policy that I will
never forget which are: 1)
Open, 2) Transparent and 3) Bottom-Up. The last session for the second day is continue
to prepare
the mock ICANN conference. After dinner, we all got
together for a group meeting to prepare for the next day presentation. I feel
that all of us take the program very seriously and we put our best effort in
it. Our group finished meeting at almost midnight.

The third day, the facilitator presented the topic on Local Internet
Governance and Internet trends. After that each group had been preparing for
last night divided into 3 groups to
present about Internet Governance issue that they were working on and how to
solve those issue. During the group discussion we can see a lot of interesting
ideas especially the youth ideas in this issue. We had also discussed about the
solutions these problems exchanged views in the Q&A session. In my group, we had chosen the topic on “A safe Internet”. The
cyber-security in the society in my opinion is very important because young
people and general users don’t have enough awareness and knowledge on the use of
Internet safely. The Internet should protect the privacy, personal data
(sensitive data) of the users, but this only possible if users have knowledge
and providers have high accountability for their services. Our group feels that
each country, should have a committee to supervise and there is a need of sharing
experiences among the countries for learning from each other. We end the day by
another workshop of preparation for tomorrow mock ICANN conference.

The
fourth day was that last day of the training session, we had a mock ICANN
conference which was
very interesting. We talked about should Domain Name Abuse be regulated and
should Whois database be regulated by GDPR. We were divided into 3 groups representing
3 Stakeholder groups which are GAC, GNSO, and ALAC, my group was GNSO. Each
group had to discuss and brain stormed on the issue. There were also real life
experts Skype in so we can discuss the issue and ask them questions. This was
very helpful in my opinion because we get to hear real-life expert’s opinion on
the issue. After that we selected a leader to present our stand.  This was the first time I participated in a
round table discussion, it had a lot of meaning for me because it was a brand
new experience and helped me imagine how ICANN conference are organised, how
different groups of stakeholders have different views, how multi-stakeholder
groups meetings are like and most importantly, what are the processes to arrive
with consensus.

The
fifth day, everyone received the certificate of the training and the organizer gave
the closing ceremony. In the afternoon, we had field trip, they were organized
for us to visit KISA (Korea Internet and Security Agency) it was very
interesting and special learning experience. In the evening we had opportunity
to have dinner in E-land Cruise and view with Han River by night. I enjoyed it
very much because we get to finally relax after 4 days of intense training. We
listen to music, chatting on general topics with our peers, I had a lot of
laughter and fun memorable moments together with the peers.

After the APIGA 2019 training, personally,
I have gained a lot of new knowledge and experience that is an important step
for me to learn and growth in my future career and also, I have created a great
network with the participants from other countries, as well as mentors, experts
and everyone at the program. This is a valuable and lifelong experience that I
can hold on to for both personal and professional purposes. I can also apply a
lot of knowledge that I learn from here in my work because I am working for
ccTLD for my country already. I would like to express my appreciation to Korea
Internet & Security Agency (KISA) and ICANN for organizing this program and
especially big thanks to APTLD for giving a great opportunity for me to access
to the new knowledge and technics of the program and lastly to the Secretariat
of APIGA 2019 to support and prepared everything for my travel to Korea until I
returned back to my country safely.

Vientiane,
23 August 2019

Souphavady
PRASEUTH