The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) has been a consistent voice in discussions surrounding online communication. In fact, we have been debating issues of safety, privacy and human dignity in electronic communications and media for nearly two decades. In the last five years we have produced a set of coherent and robust opinions on the matter, which have positively influenced the current debate. The Committee, for example, wants to see online security concerns addressed and a comprehensive strategy to safeguard children online put in place. We want to see stringent rules and sanctions to combat illegal activities, and encourage the development of skills relating to the safe use of the internet and online applications. Most fundamentally, we believe it is vitally important that this discussion about the future of the internet is inclusive and brought into the public arena, to involve as many citizens as possible. This is where we can make a real difference. By providing a platform for Europe’s social and economic partners, we aim to ensure that every policy decision has the interests of citizens at heart. This is especially pertinent in 2013: the European Year of Citizens.