Prior to reading Lessig’s writings I was unaware of the all encompassing nature of internet regulation. I did not know that there was so much turmoil to do with internet regulation and free sharing. It is impossible for me to believe that people will stand by while bits and pieces of our internet freedoms are taken away. However even though people may oppose the loss of internet freedom, they may not know that things are changing.
The need for governments to have unlimited access is somewhat understandable from one perspective. Yet it encroaches upon privacy and basic freedoms. Regulation is already happening in China, and they have a communist government. The amount of control China has over their country’s internet is staggering, it begs the question where will the line be drawn for other countries of the world?
Governmental involvement like that is really looked down upon in the US and yet, several years ago there was an attempt to secure control with the ‘Clipper chip’, and if regulation was being sought then it it surely more appealing now with the growth and vast expanse of the internet.
The patriot act looks to observe and see what people are doing on the internet and nobody questioned it because it was a matter of national security. However it seems that the act was just waiting in the wings for a situation to arise where it would be accepted by the American people. Of course at first it was welcomed with open arms, but as a people we were not well informed of what we were supporting. It seems like a very tricky foray into control and regulation.
Much of what transpires on the internet is illegal and immoral, but the same can be said for reality. Yet in reality regulation is a more tangible thing. Over the expanse of the internet there are millions of people in millions of places. At the beginnings of the internet the government attempted to gain a monopoly on encryption software in a few different way, and yet they failed. Will an attempt to foster control fail again? At this point in time is it even possible to think that any kind of control over the internet by one entity is possible?
The concept of governments regulating and tracking what people do on the web is alarming. The entirety of the internet is not used for illegality, so the notion of governments, or some kind of ‘internet world police’ enforcing the use of digital IDs is ludicrous. Perhaps in the future we will see it as the norm to provide identification over the internet.