Tag Archives: net neutrality

Tim Berners-Lee: It is up to all of us to build the web we want – for everyone

 

I’ve been meaning to write about this subject for the last week, but somehow Conference got in the way.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee wrote an important article in The Guardian about a week ago, which should be taken seriously by anyone involved in politics who a) cares about democracy and b) understands the significance of online campaigning – which I guess means most LDV readers.

As the inventor of the worldwide web, Berners-Lee has ardently campaigned for web universality and net neutrality, and he has put structures in place to try to ensure its independence from political and commercial interference. I wrote something about his concerns in 2010 when he marked the 20th anniversary of his invention with a warning article in Scientific American.

He repeats some of those worries in his latest article, demonstrating that the threats have not gone away, and indeed have been joined by new ones.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

Opinion: Do social networking sites support democracy and the Open Society?

The obvious answer is, yes. But do they?

Let’s track this idea back.

In 1979 Christopher Evans published “The Mighty Micro”. His bold and prophetic book looked at the impact of the microchip on society over the next 10-15 years.

In the same year, 1979, I wrote my first computer program on a teletype terminal and stored it on paper tape. Some desk top computers had been built, but they were very uncommon.

The chapter that really inspired me when I first read it was the one on Political and Social Issues. He predicted that the 1980s and 1990s would be dominated by “virtually infinite data transmission”

“This kind of development will encourage lateral communication – the spread of information from human being to human being across the base of the social pyramid. Characteristically this favours the kind of open society … the opposite effect on autocracies who like to make sure that all information is handled very firmly downwards”

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 3 Comments

Tim Berners-Lee on net neutrality: it’s needed for free markets, democracy and science

Only one person can start an article like this,

The world wide web went live, on my physical desktop in Geneva, Switzerland, in December 1990.

That’s Tim Berners-Lee, and after that succinct explanation of why he knows a thing or two about the web he goes on in a piece for Scientific American to to talk about the importance of net neutrality – a topic on which there have been mixed signals coming out of the Conservative Party at times:

Net neutrality maintains that if I have paid for an Internet connection at a certain quality, say, 300 Mbps, and you have paid for

Posted in News | Also tagged | 5 Comments
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    So Tory backbenchers and Tory frontbenchers who wanted to feed their personal ambition (along with the more brash Tories who temporarily joined UKIP) were main...
  • User AvatarTom C 24th Apr - 7:32pm
    The article states its case with force and clarity. Tim Farron's lack of agility in dealing with the issue is worrying, though. Make no mistake...
  • User AvatarDavid Cooper 24th Apr - 6:57pm
    @Robin Grayson This is a national tax, not a local tax. It is better than increasing income tax (which is undesirable since it reduces the...
  • User AvatarCaron Lindsay 24th Apr - 6:42pm
    Jennie, I've changed it to same sex marriage, but I do think the term equal marriage is justified because that is what LGBT+ Lib Dems...
  • User AvatarGeoff Crocker 24th Apr - 6:32pm
    I wasn't talking about the LD Party in Russia but about a generic liberal democratic agenda. Data on average per capita income, the effect of...
  • User AvatarRobin Grayson 24th Apr - 6:29pm
    Great idea! Can the new Mayors progress it?