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Ajitora at DotAsia Announces Multistakeholder Collaboration to Develop Wildlife Friendly® Framework for Internet and ICT Companies

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2016.01.21, Hong Kong – DotAsia Organisation announces today a collaboration led by Tx2 Ambassador: Ajitora (http://www.ajitora.asia), bringing together the Hong Kong Internet Service Providers Association (HKISPA), Hong Kong Information Technology Federation (HKITF), Internet Society Hong Kong (ISOC HK), Asia Pacific Top Level Domain Association (APTLD) and Asia Pacific Network Information Center (APNIC), to develop a set of principles for tackling illegal wildlife trade online: “Ajitora Friendly” framework.  Upon the official appointment of Ajitora as a Tx2 Ambassador, Aji is starting to bring together different stakeholders to realize the Tx2 goal to #doubletigers by 2022.  Building on the work from organizations supporting Tx2, including Global Tiger Forum (GTF), WWF and TRAFFIC, a Tiger Friendly™ initiative was announced earlier with Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN).  This release marks another milestone by connecting the wildlife conservation community with the Internet community to develop industry guidelines and define wildlife friendliness principles for Internet and ICT companies.

“Wild tigers may feel remote to urbanites like you and me, unknowingly however the Internet is directly impacting our wildlife environment.  The proliferation of illegal wildlife trade online being one of the top threats.” said Edmon Chung, CEO of DotAsia.  “Ajitora is a center point of a multi-dimensional approach we are committing to the cause to promote sustainable development in Asia.”

“Internet service providers are always responsive in mitigating abusive behaviours online.  Taking down content on the Internet nevertheless puts the provider at risk of overextended policing.” said Lento Yip, Chairman of HKISPA.  “Appropriate intermediary liability protection and procedures are critical to effectively tackle illegal wildlife trade online.  HKISPA looks forward to participate in developing a serviceable approach with Ajitora and DotAsia.”

“I believe many Internet users care about a sustainable environment.  Nevertheless, privacy and freedom of expression must not be compromised in the name of security or measures against crimes carried out in our cyberspace such as illegal online wildlife trade,” said Chester Soong, Chairman of ISOC HK.  “As one of the most active Internet Society chapters, ISOC HK is excited to join Ajitora and DotAsia at the forefront of a global movement for wildlife and environmental friendly guidelines relevant for Internet companies.”

“Social innovation is not just about technology, but technology and social media amplifies social impact,” said Erwin Huang, Chairman of HKITF.  “Ajitora reminds us that the IT industry also has social responsibilities to a sustainable wildlife environment.  HKITF applauds Ajitora and DotAsia, and look forward to embarking together on this meaningful project for environment sustainability.”

“As with other online problems which cross borders, combating the online trade in illegal products requires cooperation among many parties, who cannot act effectively alone. It’s a good example of the “multistakeholder approach”, where a whole community of organisations and companies, individuals and Governments are engaged in achieving an outcome.” said Paul Wilson, Director General of APNIC.  “The collaborative approach led by Ajitora and DotAsia is a great start for this important and urgent undertaking, which is also aligned with the UN’s newly updated Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

“Tiger range countries are within the APTLD region, and we are supportive of Ajitora’s mission,” said Leonid Todorov, General Manager of APTLD.  “Our members are focused on supporting Internet identifiers and not the content.  We are pleased that Ajitora and DotAsia’s approach respects the narrow scope of TLD registries, and will encourage our members to also participate in the process.”

A series of roundtables will be planned in the first half of 2016 with a goal to develop a set of principles that could form a framework for countering illegal wildlife trade online.  The Ajitora Friendly framework will then be proposed at the Asia Pacific regional as well as global Internet governance forums to engage further industry refinement and support.

 

 

About Ajitora and Tx2
Tigers are a symbol for Asia.  Wild tiger population dropped 97% from 100,000 just a century ago, to as few as 3,200 today.  Tx2 is a vision by tiger range countries (China, India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Nepal, Laos, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Russia) to #doubletigers in the wild by 2022. Tx2 is supported by WWF, Global Tiger Forum (GTF), TRAFFIC, etc.  Unbeknownst to many is how the Internet impacts wildlife environment.  Proliferation of illegal wildlife trade online coupled with abusive mining of social media data for criminal poaching and deforestation, threaten the survival of tigers and other wildlife.  Ajitora is the center point of a multi-dimensional campaign from technology, Internet policy, to consumer market engagement to support tigers and a sustainable wildlife environment in Asia. 

Ajitora (http://www.ajitora.asia) is a PR character of DotAsia.  Born from the Internet when the Himalayas were connected by wifi, Ajitora (“Aji”) zips across cyberspace by traversing the dotted world from .NP to .CN to .Asia.  Aji is a cheerful, energetic and curious tiger on a journey to meet new friends and trace his own roots.  Jumping through javascripts online, our cyberspace tiger found himself a name combining “aji”+”tora” to represent both “King of the Cyber Jungle” as well as “Asia Tiger”.  Inspired by tigers’ symbolic meanings for sustainable development and a collaborative Asia, the Ajitora movement is not only about tigers, but about bringing awareness of how we are all connected.  As the Asian Tiger economies roar forward in the Asia Century ahead, our wildlife, technology and policy environments should be Roaring Forward Together!

About DotAsia
DotAsia (https://www.dot.asia) is a registered not-for-profit charitable organization (DotAsia Foundation: IRD 91/12820) with a mandate to promote Internet development and adoption in Asia.  DotAsia operates the “.Asia” top-level domain (TLD) as part of the core global Internet infrastructure, and is formed as an open consortium of official domain authorities in Asia, including .CN (China), .JP (Japan), .KR (Korea), .IN (India), .NZ (New Zealand), .PH (Philippines), etc., and regional Internet organizations including APNIC, APNG, APIA, APCERT, APRALO, APTLD, etc.  Since the launch of “.Asia”, DotAsia proactively contributes to the Asia community, supporting many charitable projects, e.g.: One-Laptop-Per-Child Asia Pacific (http://www.olpc.asia), Information Society Innovations Fund (http://www.isif.asia), Asia Pacific Regional Internet Governance Forum  (http://www.aprigf.asia), Food Revolution Day initiative with Jamie Oliver (http://www.frd.asia), NetMission.Asia (youth volunteer program &network — http://www.netmission.asia), Go.Asia (http://www.go.asia), and many more.

Media Contact:
Beatrice Chan: beatrice@dot.asia

Ajitora: ajitora@dot.asia
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