One Internet, Indivisible – Ethan Zuckerman

From Inc.com (link):

A major reason the Internet has been such a boon to business is that it’s been a single network, accessible to anyone from anywhere. Any entrepreneur can create a website that can be accessed by literally hundreds of millions of users. What country a customer lives in or what Web service he or she uses may affect how fast a website loads, but we’re all connected to the same Internet. Unfortunately, that is changing rapidly.

The principal of maintaining the Internet as a single, interconnected network with no preference for one type of bits over another–what geeks call “network neutrality”–is under assault. Foreign countries have led the charge. Saudi Arabia blocks content that runs counter to the clerics’ interpretation of Islam. China bars its citizens’ access to sites created by, among others, practitioners of Falun Gong. What results is the fragmentation of the Internet. The network that we’ve grown accustomed to over the past decade is, in a very real sense, becoming multiple Internets, because the Internet you encounter from within China is different from the Internet you encounter in the United States.

May 23, 2006 9:09 PM
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