Developpers worry: web too controled

Discussion in 'ten-forward' started by Paul Wilders, Jun 24, 2002.

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  1. Paul Wilders

    Paul Wilders Administrator

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    ARLINGTON, Va. - The Internet's potential for promoting expression and empowering citizens is under threat from corporate and government policies that clash with the medium's long-standing culture of openness, some leading Internet thinkers warn.

    At the annual Internet Society conference this week, the engineers who built the Internet and many of the policymakers who follow its development urged caution as governments try to exert control and businesses look to maximize profit.

    ``We're at a turning point in the evolution of the Internet,'' said William Drake, a fellow at the University of Maryland. A wrong turn means ``robbing it of its real democratic potential.''

    Vint Cerf, co-developer of the Internet's basic communications protocols, worries that big, traditional businesses could gain unprecedented control through technical manipulation of the next-generation, high-speed services that are delivered over cable and phone lines.

    Companies are inhibiting innovation, notes Cerf, by letting users receive information faster than they can send it.

    ``That leads to a lot of peculiar effects,'' Cerf said. Two people ``could each receive high-quality video but can't send it. They can't have high-quality video conferencing.''

    Cerf is a co-founder of the Internet Society, an international, non-profit organization of Internet architects and professionals devoted to maintaining the Internet's viability and addressing issues it confronts.

    With governments and businesses taking a growing interest in the Internet, the INET 2002 conference's theme was ``Internet Crossroads: Where Technology and Policy Intersect.''

    The TCP/IP communications protocols that Cerf and Robert Kahn developed in the 1970s favored open standards, neutrality and flexibility over proprietary techniques, a development that later allowed personal computers to connect and innovations like the World Wide Web to develop.

    That openness is increasingly threatened by ``profit motives of corporations and control issues of governments,'' said Eric Schmidt, chief executive of Google. He pointed to the current ``balkanization'' of instant messaging, where a lack of standards prevents America Online users from communicating with people on rival services.

    Steve Crocker, an Internet pioneer who promoted open protocols at the standards-setting Internet Engineering Task Force, said today's decisions ``could stunt the Internet to where it becomes a mechanism for delivering entertainment, ads and conducting consumer-oriented business for large players.''

    Meanwhile, proposals by some service providers to adjust access fees based on a broadband consumer's data traffic volume could inhibit the development of video and other data-intensive applications, said David Farber, a University of Pennsylvania professor and former chief technologist at the Federal Communications Commission.

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    source: www.bayarea.com
     
  2. root

    root Registered Member

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    Legitimate concerns to be sure. I keep waiting for at least one of the governments to get in there and screw things up.
    The internet is a good thing. It promotes freedom of thought and expression. It allows free sharing of ideas, technology, concepts, art, music, information in general. Something like that strikes fear in the hearts of those Government officials that would control us. You can rest assured, all over the world, there are power mongers plotting their next move to gain control of this wonderful tool. It is too powerful to be left alone.
    I do believe the only thing that saves us right now is that no one entity is going to be able to just assume control of the net. The other players won't allow it.
    If they ever get together and agree on how to do it, we are doomed.
     
  3. Prince_Serendip

    Prince_Serendip Registered Member

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    This is a quote from my posting in Ten-Forward at "UK Gov't Spies on US Citizens (and others),"
    The Internet is the greatest communication medium this planet has ever seen. It has tremendous power! I am not surprised that the big-wheels are interested in gaining "control" of it. I expect that there will be and already is a power-struggle occurring and continuing at this very moment for dominance of parts of or all of the Net. The many users of the Internet, must be vigilant, if they are to protect their interests!
     
  4. Mr.Blaze

    Mr.Blaze The Newbie Welcome Wagon

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    I wish some country with mass satilites and mas servers made there owen verstion of the internet.

    sold a satlite reciver to anyware in the world and charged a loww monthly fee for satlite internet and said the h.e.ll with big compnys and usa laws .

    im suprise germany with all its satlites hadnt thought about it since there broke and dont need there spy satlites any more.

    imagine people sighning up for germany or rushin internet and droping there usa service providers
     
  5. Prince_Serendip

    Prince_Serendip Registered Member

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    :D Radical as always MRBLAZE! Maybe not too far off? I don't see Germany providing that. Don't they get funding from US interests? I wouldn't put it past the Russians though. You can buy space travel with them. I am so glad that the USSR collapsed (under its own inefficiencies)! Good ideas though MRBLAZE! :D
     
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