Several rights organisations have stepped up their opposition to the upcoming eG8 forum, believing that the event will be used by governments to increase their regulation of the internet.
The forum, which was arranged by French president Nicolas Sarkozy, will bring together technology executives, businesses and world leaders to discuss the future of the internet.
Attendees are set to include Google chairman Eric Schmidt and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, as well as representatives from a number of start-ups.
The forum will take place for two days in Paris before Sarkozy hosts the official G8 summit in northern France.
Organisations from around the world, including the Dutch Institute of Network Cultures, the Spanish Free Culture Forum, the German Netzpolitik.org and the French La Quadrature du Net, are calling on people to oppose the eG8 event.
The organisations argue that Sarkozy will use the eG8 forum to rally support for more internet censorship.
"In spite of harmless-sounding rhetoric, the 'eG8 forum' is a smokescreen to cover the increased control of governments over the internet," said La Quadrature du Net spokesman Jérémie Zimmermann.
"It is a crucial moment in history when citizens have to mobilise to remain in control of an open and universal internet. Attempts to turn the net into a tool of repression and control must be opposed through every available means of expression and creation."
However, the UK-based Open Rights Group remains hopeful that the eG8 will bring positive outcomes for internet users.
"These forums need to focus on ensuring the internet remains a place of greater freedom and creativity," said Open Rights Group campaigner Peter Bradwell.
"The attendees must make sure that a commitment to principles of privacy and freedom of expression are embedded at the heart of internet policy making.
"There is an opportunity here, but the jury is certainly out on whether this new conference will help or hinder those aspirations."
Sarkozy has previously seemed to side with rights owners by pushing through a 'three strikes' law in France designed to cut off persistent illegal downloaders from the internet.
The idea has had repercussions elsewhere, including the UK which introduced a similarly controversial piece of legislation with the Digital Economy Act.
A new bill is currently being considered in the US, meanwhile, that will give federal government the power to shut down web sites deemed to be encouraging illegal downloading.
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