This week marks the 30th birthday for the world wide web. We have come a long way, but still have a lot more to go to get where we want with the problems surrounding the internet. Problems such as regulation; regulating the internet properly both the business side and the content itself. Giving access to all people because it has become something that someone cannot live without or they will get left behind.
For a good history on the internet, check out Brian McCullough’s How The Internet Happened: From Netscape To The iPhone. The internet has gone through a lot: the dotcom boom, web 2.0 and I would say that we are in a web 3.0 transition with IoT and 5G emerging. The people who made the internet didn’t have anything in mind for it as it was used by the military then unis before going to the masses. It was at this point that there was a vision that could be used for something great.
Regulating the Internet
Internet regulation is a current problem along with others but this is the top priority. There is not fast internet everywhere for everyone and that’s because the wrong people are in place to provide these services. There is no proper way to regulate the internet. It was made to connect people to everyone with nothing hindering that. This has caused a lot of problems such as what the dark web can bring, cyberbullying, along with should it be regulated at the government level? Should a company make another internet? an internet 2.0 with proper security, rule and right people in place. Companies like AT&T feel since they own the pipes that produce the internet, they should own the content that runs through it.
The Internet going forward
In 1996, John Perry Barlow wrote a Declaration of The Independence of Cyberspace. Even though it is nothing official, as companies, governments, and others try to get a foothold on the internet, they have to keep this in mind that it shouldn’t belong to anyone, but everyone. A decentralized internet would essentially do that. There is a plot on the show Silicon Valley about this. This Wired article explains a decentralized internet that basically comes down to not having a middle man for people to have internet, but to have peer to peer networks. This more recent article also gives more insight into the matter. I am sure if this would come to fruition, it would raise more questions.
I am not sure what a perfect vision for the internet would be. I know that it is not perfect now. As I have stated in other blogs, my master’s thesis is “is the internet a human right”. I think right now it is, but there are too many barriers preventing it from it truly being a right that everyone can see that it should be one.