Internet Governance Essay

2166 words - 9 pages

The new technologies that are changing our world are not a panacea or a magic bullet. But they are, without doubt, enormously powerful tools for development. They create jobs. They are transforming education, health care, commerce, politics and more. They can help in the delivery of humanitarian assistance and even contribute to peace and security.One of the most pressing challenges in the new century is to harness this extraordinary force, spread it throughout the world, and make its benefits accessible and meaningful for all humanity, in particular the poor.- Kofi Annan, UN Secretary-General.IntroductionThe Internet and other forms of e-communication have dramatically changed the world around us for good. There has been a major shift from centralized control of content to the democratization of content, because of the ubiquity of access, because the tools exist for information to go both ways. We can see this at work all across the globe; especially in places like Darfur and Pakistan that used to seem so very far away. More people are in touch with what is happening in these places than ever before in history. What does this mean? It means that public opinion can become mobilized. Even if they cut the tether to the TV stations (as Pervez Musharra has done), people will still have access to blogs and the networks of people activating to make democracy happen. The power of the internet as a democratizing force comes from being uncontrollable and oftentimes chaotic. While this has done a lot of good for the people in places like Pakistan and Darfur and the states, many governments believe the internets unwieldiness is dangerous and should be governed. This brings about a debate on how government both domestically and internationally should deal with the internet. This includes the internet highway itself; in terms of IP addressing and bandwidth, the next stage in internet (WWW2), and regulation/taxation of internet commerce.This report will provide information necessary to further understand the issues related to 'Internet Governance' by looking at UN reports of summit meetings, The Constitution, congressional hearings and laws, and case law.HistoryAfter many years of development in the 1960s and 70s, the internet first gained prominence in the late 1980s with the original Internet Service Providers (ISPs), which offered expensive access to limited network servers, mainly used by large corporations to relay large quantities of numerical information pertaining to research, business practices, and the early predecessors of electronic mail. The World Wide Web, as we know it today as a collection of html documents viewed through a web browser, was ushered in the early 1990s by English physicist Sir Tim Berners-Lee, who will go down in history as the father of the World Wide Web we use, know, and love today.By 1992, Berners-Lee had launched the early web, building a string of web nodes containing domain names, html documents, and hypertext pages on a...

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