Update on the Efforts of the Humanized Internet

By Monique Morrow

The Humanized Internet is a Swiss-based non-profit organization with a core focus on ‘identity sets’ as it pertains to each of us as individuals, and also to those who are lacking from access and could benefit.

Technology is at its best when it allows individuals to take control of their own destinies and when it unleashes a whole new era of personal innovation, creativity, and free-thinking lifestyles, with recurring opportunities for continual development, and learning. This includes allowing every individual to have and express their identity. 

What is Identity? 

At first glance identity may appear to come from the cards that are issued to us at birth, or as citizens with names and dates of birth, or from coming of age at eighteen years old, on licenses to drive vehicles, and even on wedding certificates.

Another common perception is that our identities are based on our interests, skills, gender, and ethnicity, and overall that it is a  fixed and stable concept that can be taken for granted. But, for anyone who’ve ever lost their ID card, or passport when travelling abroad, it can then be almost impossible to do the simplest of things – from booking a hotel room, to renting a car, or even buying a SIM card to contact family. Losing a passport will not necessarily make us question who we are, but it will certainly deprive us of many opportunities to prove it! 

And, so what for those who have never had an official ID, or a birth certificate? Or, one has been lost  and there are limited funds with which to apply for a new one? Or, the country in which a person was born and grew up in does not recognize individuals from an ethnic group as a citizen? Or someone had to flee their country because of a natural disaster or a war and cannot go back to have documents re-issued, or a country has ceased to exist? 

In these cases, how is each of us to be identified? What gives such a piece of paper the magical power over our lives, and how did we arrive at a political and social situation where our worth is determined not by who we are, but by the type of documentation we hold? Ultimately why does one need to prove identity to exist within a community, or country?

Despite the ever-going interest in the topic of ‘identity’, especially in recent years, the concept remains something of an enigma. 

 “Who Am I?” is a question that has occupied the minds of many philosophers, scientists, thinkers, and artists, since the early days of humanity. Simultaneously, “what identifies me? is a question that has formed the basis for many theories, and arguments, but not yet been settled. 

So, who are we really? What identifies us and makes us unique? 

Some theories claim that personal identity persists over time because one retains the same body from birth to death. Others assert that personal identity persists over time because one holds memories of oneself in timeframes and forms a chain of connected memories.

Digital Sovereign Identity is about the level of control we  may have and includes the control we each have  over various media and influences.

Technologies are enablers in this process and certainly partnering with various organizations along the way is a must.  Artificial Intelligence (AI) and blockchain may for example be used to provide a ‘predictor’ function to a professional background.

Individuals can take an internationally recognized exam and have their  credentials time-stamped-hashed with a validator function on the blockchain.  

Recently, I had the opportunity to visit the Zataari Refugee Camp and spoke with individuals who have dreams to continue their education and practice their professions thank to being validated by this sort of technology

This is all work in progress and dependent on partnerships with various organizations and foundations, and most importantly the people who are impacted  whether they be refugees, or longer-term citizens, 

We are excited about the possibilities and hope that as connected citizens and a reader of this article, you will be too.

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