Since the eruption of the Arab Spring, nation-states have become increasingly aware of the role individuals can play thanks to technology. In particular, I’m talking about hacktivism, the ability to penetrate web security systems so that information passes into virtual worlds where geographic boundaries no longer exist. According to Michael Joseph Gross, in his article “World War 3.0” it’s a world where,
“The youngest citizens of the Net don’t even recognize allegiance to a country or to a political party. Their allegiance is to the hive… the Web gives individuals immense power without instilling the ‘compassion, humility, wisdom or restraint to wield that power responsibility.” (“World War 3.0,” by Michael Joseph Gross quoting Joshua Corman, who track hackers, “Vanity Fair,” 5/2012)
At the moment, nation states are squaring off against one another, debating about how much or how little they should control the Web. Most of the western nations want to keep the Web fluid, but nations like India, China and Brazil want greater control. Add to this the conflicting commercial interests of the entertainment business and those of Silicon Valley and we end up in Lilliput land where little guys must band together to fend off giants.
Frankly, I consider the struggle for control of the Internet to be a matter of free speech. That’s why I believe the arguments in Gross’s article are important. Tomorrow I’ll attempt a palatable synopsis. Anyone not interested should skip Wednesday’s blog and join me again on Thursday. Either way, please stay tuned.
Virtual Book Tour for May 22: Jaidis @ Juniper Grove