I’ve been discussing fairly extensively the makeup of the web marketplace and how major companies like Google, Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, and others contribute to the stagnation of creativity and limit competitive development. My arguments are published throughout our blog so feel free to read back a ways to get caught up to speed. Essentially, my belief is that these massive elephants have squeezed themselves into a very small room of their own construction, and are now competing to gobble up what small bits of food (creative invention and development) they can find. The combination of this behavior, through patent trolling, litigation, and copy catting, ends up guiding user behavior, rather than support it. In the long run, the human interactivity and potential of the internet as a modicum for advancement and evolution is nullified.
If I think that is the case now, it will only be more true if the greatest bloated behemoth tries to push its way in. That entity? The government! The perfect example of a ‘corporation’ using previous successes to fuel unnecessary size, unnecessary functionality, and stifling development.
Under the ostensible excuse that it here to protect end users, the United States government continues to expand its ability and willingness to shove its way online. By using powers granted to it built around its governance of telephones, newspapers, and other technologies, it adds to a long list of excuses as to why we need it.
Invariably this will only further burden the advancement of the internet and make it a more ‘unsafe’ environment for the fostering of ideas and the discussion of political viewpoints. Just like McCarthyism played on a broad number of fears to allow significant violation of Constitutional rights, the US government now uses the banners of privacy, cyber terrorism, and more to shove its bloated behind where it isn’t needed. If you look at other countries with similar levels of government involvement, you’ll note that many of them are going through periods of violent unrest and uprising, where the government has attempted to shut down internet communication in an effort to control protest and free speech.
Don’t think that our government would ever do anything like that? Just take a gander at this article . Our wonderful, representative government wants to use social networks to attempt to control and guide your thoughts through user profiles and other methodologies. That sounds a lot like entrapment and illegal wire tapping to me. Will they on the surface be required to get a warrant to authorize such actions? I certainly hope so. But then the anonymity of the internet becomes an advantage for them but not for anyone else. By being the entity responsible for policing the web, the government becomes capable of ignoring and manipulating it. Power corrupts anyone?
Right now, the big giant fat repugnant slobbering disgusting nasty revolting companies that make up our web economy are slathering at the opportunity to have the government help them control the growth and development of the internet. In fact, they’re sending some of their executives to work for the government! Internet governance is a discussion that must be had sooner than later, and on a large enough scale that end users are informed about the liability of adding the government to the mix creates.
I don’t mean that web designers and search engine optimization companies should sit down and talk internally about this. Many of the tech magazines need to be publishing this, as should many of their more antiquated relatives who still rely on print media. The greatest difficult we face as a society is in trusting the government we are supposed to know enough to guide, to guide us.