I'm excited about the new role!
It's only 3.5 years ago that I joined the Internet Society in September 2011. To understand why I joined "ISOC", as it is know by some, you need to go back and read my post about the big change then, but essentially, it came down to this:
I believe we are at a critical point where we have before us a choice of futures for the Internet - and we as a society need to understand those choices... and choose wisely!
3.5 years later I believe that even MORE firmly than I did then.
We need to fight for the open Internet! We need to make the right choices that will allow our children to have the "Internet of opportunity" that we've had the privilege of having... and we've got quite a struggle ahead!
Over the past 3.5 years my focus within the Internet Society has been primarily on the Deploy360 Programme, our project to accelerate the deployment and usage of critical Internet technologies such as IPv6, DNSSEC, TLS, and more. It's been an awesome opportunity. I built out the Deploy360 website ... set up all the WordPress-based systems so that we could rapidly create and distribute content... wrote probably 1,000 pieces of content... recorded videos and audio segments... spoke at our ION conferences all over the world... attended IETF and ICANN meetings... and met some of the most amazing and passionate people I've ever encountered!
Along the way, I've wound up doing a great bit of work with DNSSEC, aiming to help make the Domain Name System (DNS) more secure - and I'll actually be continuing all of this "DNSSEC coordination" work on into my new role.
As part of the Deployment and Operationalization (DO) Team, we've been out there telling the story of how these technologies and standards can make the Internet work better, be faster and be more secure. It's hard to know exactly how much impact we've had... but we've received a good number of messages from people thanking us for helping them. It's been great to see!
And it's been great to wake up each morning working for an organization with a very clear mission.
Along the way we've had a lot of conversations internally about how the Internet Society needs to tell its story better. We're a large organization with over 60,000 member and over 100 chapters spread out around the world. We don't have a huge staff (about 90 people globally) but we have a large community and ecosystem of volunteers and members. We have a lot of different parts and pieces (and hey, you can join, too)... and we've been working on a great number of activities around the world.
In 2015, we're aiming to focus a bit more - and to get better as an organization at telling our story and helping people understand the work we do and the challenges that we as a society and world face.
As part of that, we have a new head of our communications team, James Wood, to whom I'll now be reporting, and we have a great bit of other changes underway. It's an exciting time!
Effectively what I'll be doing is expanding my content creation beyond just the technology side of Internet Society work to also write about topics such as public policy - in fact I've already started that with posts such as my one about the fundamental tension between security and privacy and the series of posts I wrote from ICANN 52.
More than just writing, though, I'll be working with authors across our organization to have a better strategy so that we are consistently creating quality content and maximizing the distribution. We produce a lot of content... so this will be a challenging, but interesting, role!
I'll also be working on ensuring we as the Internet Society have on voice on new and emerging topics... being a bit more "forward-looking" than we've been in the past. (Which ties in nicely with my whole "view of the crow's nest" orientation).
And, as I mentioned, I'll still be focused around accelerating DNSSEC deployment around the world... so I'll still have a foot deep in the technology realm!
Content strategy, technology, writing, forward-looking thinking... all in the service of ensuring the Internet remains open for innovation and opportunity!
It's really a dream for me... the opportunity to be even more of a voice for the open Internet... and I'm looking forward to making it happen!
That's the news from here... and I do have to end with thanking my current manager of the DO Team, Chris Grundemann, and also Olaf Kolkmann, our Chief Internet Technology Officer (CITO), both of whom have been incredibly supportive of me moving into this new role. It's been great working for them - and now the good news is that I'll still be working with them!
P.S. And in truth, while the role officially starts on Monday, I'm actually going to be preparing for and then speaking at the NTEN conference in Austin, TX, next week (about our choice of Internet futures!)... and so the new role really won't get underway until the following week!
An audio commentary is also available at: