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Plea for Digital Human Rights

gbs submits digital charter proposal to United Nations

70 years ago, on December 10, 1948, the UN General Assembly in Paris adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The digital revolution was still in the distant future. Just in time for the 70th anniversary the Giordano Bruno Stiftung (gbs) now submitted its proposals for a Charter of Fundamental Digital Rights to the United Nations.

The "digital human rights" proposal, presented in German and English, is intended to fill a growing gap. In a resolution from December 18, 2014, the United Nations General Assembly stated that human rights also apply online and that privacy must also be protected in the digital domain. Given the far-reaching consequences of digitization, this is not enough. The Giordano Bruno Stiftung argues that the fundamental digital rights of individuals should be explicitly recognized as UN Human Rights in order to maintain the status they deserve in the political debate.

The official delivery of the proposals to the United Nations office in Vienna is planned to take place in the coming weeks. The submission is addressed to the Secretary-General as well as to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Data Protection. The proposals for a "Charter of Digital Human Rights", submitted in advance by mail, can be found here (German version / English version). They are part of a more detailed position paper by the Giordano Bruno Stiftung on IT issues (German version: "WIE muss Technik?" / English version: "How should IT work?").

"Digital human rights" were first discussed in March 2018 at a workshop attended by representatives of various organizations and later formulated in cooperation with other ethics, legal, and IT experts. In addition the draft incorporates the results of the discussion on a European Digital Charter (