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Internet Governance Has Become a Non-Issue

It's funny, but I recall the battle cry that the WWW was "free" back in its early days. When contributing game concept to the early and great gaming pioneers like Infocom, there was such a great esprit-du-corps amongst our team regarding the fun as well as utility that the WWW offerred. In retrospect, we were so naive. I recall the days when guys like Bill Gates prided themselves on being such a great "hackers" - it was a noble term back then.

The internet has become over the past quarter century so darn expensive that the huge tech multinationals that control the internet have become the world's new governments in fact. With war chests of billions of dollars in reserve and little debt on their balance sheets, certain ones are wealthier than the countries in which they are domiciled. Just compare the strength of our own country's Balance Sheet to that of one of our country's firms such as Microsoft or VeriSign - and you be the judge as to whom it is that "governs" quite more than the internet.

Smart hackers well know that there is only one form of telecomm that remains truly "secure". That's why they use satellite phone/internet/intranet connections for sensitive personal/corporate/governmental dialogue. By training, I'm a FCC Senior Licensed engineer and MBA/MIA with concentration in operations research, and a 35-year long career in international trade and affairs. The first code I learned was cable code in a 1,500-page bible written by Western Union back in 1969; I learned programming on Columbia's huge IBM360 where I learned to program in BASIC/FORTRAN/etal back in 1974.

Clearly, I am an open-source fanatic. Yet, with its encryption limitations, it's no longer practical for serious international trade and governmental communications.

In summary, "Internet Governance" has become sadly a non-issue by 2004.

It is governed by a few major multinationals that report to no one but their shareholders. Even smart folks actually believe that that little "lock" icon on their 128 SSL/TLS screen means no one is looking at their transactions. Their delusion in this regard has resulted in the exponential ascendance in "Identity Theft" as our country's most serious major felony growth industry.

Except when communicating by satellite, I do not kid myself that freedom of speech guaranteed by our Constitution has become a tragically abused right over the years.

By T1
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Re: Internet Governance Has Become a Non-Issue Daniel R. Tobias  –  Sep 28, 2004 12:17 PM PDT

I'm not sure what the heyday of Infocom has to do with the WWW, since the time of that famous producer of text adventure games preceded the existence of the Web by a number of years.  (Infocom was around from the mid '70s to the late '80s, while the World Wide Web was invented by Tim Berners-Lee in 1990.) Perhaps you're confusing the Web with the Internet, which dates back to the ARPAnet of 1969 and first became the "Internet" with the introduction of TCP/IP in the early '80s.

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