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The role that civil society played in the WCIT was limited but valuable. Civil society groups chided the ITU for a lack of transparency and on the failure to come to a consensus in revising the International Telecommunications Regulations (ITR's) as the WCIT closed last week. However, it is important to note that the ITU did take major steps toward transparency by webcasting plenary and committe five sessions.
The following can be attributed to Senior Vice President Harold Feld:
"There is definitely a need to keep civil society groups in the conversations surrounding ITR's and the ITU. Public scrutiny and the involvement of civil society held countries around the world accountable while thwarting the most dangerous attempts at global censorship.
"It's important that emmbers of civil society understand that these issues will continue to be raised at the ITU. The World Telecom Policy Forum will take place in May 2013 and the ITU Plenipotentiary conference is in 2014. Civil society needs to be prepared to push back against countries that continue to pursue a pro-censorship agenda."