Who owns the Internet? Essay

Who owns the Internet? Essay

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What actually is the Internet? The Internet is not a singular item, but instead millions of computers that communicate independent of a central controller and dynamically changes size based upon the number of computers that are either connecting or disconnecting. The origins of the Internet can be traced back to U.S. defense research in the late 1950’s at DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) when scientists wished to link Radar stations together as a defense against the threat of a Russian nuclear arms attack (Waldrop 78-79). As the prevalence of computers has grown, so has the Internet, transforming it from a utility used for governmental defense into a consumer resource out of government jurisdiction. The ubiquity of the Internet, and nowadays, the Internet of Things, which is the idea of connecting ordinary everyday items to the Internet to create a smarter world, brings into question who has the authority to regulate the content and information that is allowed to be posted there. As the Internet spreads to more users worldwide, a growing number of nations choose to either shut off or heavily censor the Internet despite the objection by many U.S. leaders.
Recent revelations by Edward Snowden have brought to light omnipresent surveillance of U.S. citizens through the use of the Internet. The United States is contradicting its intrinsic values found in the Bill of Rights by unanimously spying on its citizens through the Internet. This brings up the controversial question of “Who Owns the Internet?”, because all of the hardware that makes up the Internet is privately owned. Because the Internet, as the most genuine form of democracy available, is a resource that every person deserves the right to use, it should not b...


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... we had never imagined previously and is growing everyday in new ways that we are still trying to grasp.


Works Cited

Markoff, John. "Internet Censorship Growth Hampers News, Study Says." NYTimes.com. New York Times, 11 Oct. 2011. Web. 1 Dec. 2013.
Roberts, Hal, David Larochelle, Rob Faris, and John Palfrey. et al. "Mapping Local Internet Control." Computer Communications Workshop (Hyannis, CA, 2011), IEEE. 2011.
Waldrop, Mitch. "DARPA and the Internet Revolution." Darpa.mil. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, 2008. Web. 17 Nov. 2013.
Weaver, Nicholas. "Our Government Has Weaponized the Internet. Here’s How They Did It." Wired.com. Conde Nast Digital, 13 Nov. 2013. Web. 1 Dec. 2013.
Zittrain, Jonathan, and Benjamin Edelman. Internet Filtering in China. Publication. N.p.: IEEE, 2003. Internet Filtering in China. Harvard.edu, Mar.-Apr. 2003. Web. 1 Dec. 2013.

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