The Internet is not simply a sandbox for network research any more, it has become the primary means of electronic communication around the world. Before long, it will be the only such means and we will all be better for it. Please allow firms that depend on networking to invest efficiently so as to maximize their incentives to innovate.
When faced with the need to either stagnate or grow, Novell chose the status quo path. Let’s hope Orem doesn’t repeat the error with UTOPIA. It might have been a great idea in 2002, but the visions many of us had of networking in those days were blind to the progress that was possible for wireless. That was a serious miscalculation.
The web’s greatest shortcoming, as well the greatest shortcoming of the Internet before the web, is the absence of tools for commerce in the plumbing. The web needs to provide each user with a persistent identity – or more, and they don’t need to be real – and a dance card for all the permissions we’ve given for data collectors to record our activities.
The disconnect between the way the Internet really is and the way neutrality advocates wish it were came into stark relief today: while some Congressmen were outside the Capitol giving speeches on the importance of net neutrality, those inside the building voted to make significant, harmful changes to Section 230, the real protector of Internet speech. And they didn’t even notice.
We need IA, the ISPs, Congress, and the regulatory agencies to come together and draft a new section for the Communications Act addressing privacy, security, fraud and other criminal conduct, and market concentration.