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Sunday, February 6, 2011

Douglas Ruskoff "...The Internet is Entirely Controlled By Central Authorities"

If you haven't heard of Douglas Rushkoff, I suggest you check out his philosophy, writings, and lectures. His book "Cyberia: Life in the trenches of Hyperspace" is what turned me onto Computer Science, philosophy, media theory, and human interaction with technology. Rushkoff has raised a very interesting and very valid point about the internet as we know it. I mentioned this in my earlier post about the Egyptian revolution. Rushkoff, says that while we think our bottom up internet is free now, due to expressive sites like Youtube, Twitter, and Facebook, in reality, we are still under the careful eye of any ISP and in turn, the government. We can have all the freedom to post anything on Youtube, but if someone picks up the phone and tells Verizon to bring the internet down with a click of a button, then yea, we're not really so free.
I mean I don't think we'd ever see such a mass shut down on the scale of Egypt's..but even when the Wikileaks site was shut off, here in the US, I'm sure it wasn't the first time, a site has been shut down, but it was the first one that recieved public attention

"Isn't it good to have a circuit breaker somewhere? A trusted authority in charge who can prevent people from saying the wrong things to each other? Perhaps.
But if we believe our society is capable of engaging in the democratic process, we must trust its people to share their thoughts and ideas -- their words -- directly with one another, no matter how threatening to those currently in power."

At the end of the article, Ruskoff mentions a new type of networking called Mesh Networking, which would tye wireless connections to each other. So I can broadcast my wifi signal and someone else can connect directly to it, rather than through an ISP.

Whoops, forgot to post this originally..check out the full CNN report:


  1. Excellent post. I'm glad thoughts like these are being brought to light. Doug has some great things to say, and I hope everyone hears them.

  2. Nice post bro. Clicked the CNN report and it really made me interested.

  3. I really like that you share these with us..Great post

  4. well, the fact that the internet is controlled by authorities doesn't surprise me at all.

  5. Mesh networking isn't new, it's a topology. The application of mesh networking concepts in a wireless environment would be the new(ish) twist, I believe.

  6. They can know your IP and all the pages that u visit if they want :/

  7. Hmm. Definitely strange. Who knows if they'd do something like that here (shut off the internet Egypt style I mean).

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