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Global Internet Governance Fight Looms 155

Posted by Soulskill
from the whether-the-bear-wins-or-the-fox-wins-the-rabbit-loses dept.
QuietLagoon writes "The global fight among governments over control of the Internet is heating up amid a flurry of documents, the opening of the United Nations' General Assembly (GA) and next week's Internet Governance Forum (IGF). Will the change in Internet governance result in states like China and Russia exerting more control over what is allowed on the Internet? The United States has so far comprehensively outmaneuvered attempts by other governments to seize control of the Internet, helped by the fact that it holds the keys and represents the status quo. But how long will it continue to be able to do so?"
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Global Internet Governance Fight Looms

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    The internet was better when engineers ran it, not politicians.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      The internet was better when engineers ran it, not politicians

      Yes, you're right. It was much better when it was nothing but usenet chatter about Star Trek and ASCII-art versions of Playboy centerfolds.

      • Now eternal september is upon the face of the net, and all is woe (hand wring).

        • by Baron_Yam (643147)

          I'm old enough to remember when Usenet became useless every September. Old enough to remember when it was USEFUL after the freshmen calmed down and grew up.

          Also, after UUDecoding my jpeg pr0n, it took 10-15 seconds to decode a still image on my computer. Bah!

      • by tqk (413719)

        The internet was better when engineers ran it, not politicians

        Yes, you're right. It was much better when it was nothing but usenet chatter about Star Trek and ASCII-art versions of Playboy centerfolds.

        Oh, fsck off! [wikipedia.org]

        "We believe in consensus and running code."

        And besides, Vint Cerf hates your guts!

      • I dunno. Now it is nothing but facebook chatter about Star Search and Hi-res full length movies of naked women (and men, and sheep, and the occasional pony). Little has changed, in other words, but the volume and resolution.

        I am still buoyed by the eternal truth: "The Internet interprets control as damage and routes around it." It doesn't really matter what political groups devoted to the repression and control of communication do at this point. Punching a hole through a control barrier is routine
        • by elrous0 (869638) *

          Why you got to hate on Pony porn?

          • Why do you think I'm hatin'? After all, pony porn dates back at least to Catherine the Great, and any sexual act good enough for an actual Tsarina of Russia is, well, good for her neigh...bors as well. Even though I'm sure she was just horsing around.

            It just emphasizes that there really is little new about the Internet. I'm sure that pony porn was invented no more than a couple of days after photography was invented. In fact, Daguerre's first known photograph was of a pony being led by a young boy (s
  • The world will be made up of Internets.

  • by digitaltraveller (167469) on Tuesday September 27, 2011 @09:26PM (#37535094) Homepage

    U.S. is still one of the best places for free speech.
    The criteria for any expansion of governance in an international context should be directly linked to a country's free speech laws. So theoretically countries like Estonia and Norway deserve some power, but in reality, the only people who care about internet governance are those who want to suppress free speech.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      in the past decade, U.S has shown itself to be one of the worst (in the western world). you are living with blinders on.

      • Total BS. When have people been rounded up and prosecuted for exercising their 1st amendment rights of free speech? Keeping in mind that the 1st Amendment is not absolute and never has been since it's inception. There are certainly limits and exceptions that can be argued in open court when conflicts arise. If you have never lived in a country like N. Korea, China, Iran, Syria, Russia (getting better than the old USSR KGB controlled system but journalists are still being killed when they publish or persue c
      • What can I do? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Quila (201335) on Wednesday September 28, 2011 @08:27AM (#37538818)

        Can I stand up on a soapbox promoting the Nazi platform in Germany?

        Can I deny the Holocaust in France?

        Can I express a belief that homosexuality is shameful and to be condemned in Canada?

        Can I criticize the government or its treatment of religions in China?

        Can I make fun of the king in Thailand?

        Can I preach Christianity on a street corner in Riyadh?

        The First Amendment makes the equivalent of any of these possible in the US. You have to cross a line from expousing an ideology or opinion into actually committing crimes in order to be prosecuted.

        Yes, abuses have happened, and they have shaped our laws to what they are today. Attempts to suppress street preachers and Nazis alike have been successfully thwarted. The only place I see the censors currently winning is the gag orders on Patriot Act record requests -- and that's being worked on.

        Even our libel laws are better than the UK. Here, truth is an absolute defense.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      With FBI blacklists and carte blanche human rights abuse within the US, the US does not support freedom of speech. The US is a police state, a plutocracy with two castes. The middle class has been eliminated gradually. All for the republican hope of being a millionaire... just a chance like any casino provides. You only believe you have freedom in the US if you believe the propaganda.
    • orly (Score:2, Flamebait)

      U.S. is still one of the best places for free speech.

      Mod [wikipedia.org] parent [slashdot.org] + [slashdot.org] 1 [slashdot.org] Funny [slashdot.org]

      • by mellon (7048)

        I think "funny" does not mean what you think it means.

      • Re:orly (Score:5, Insightful)

        by JoshuaZ (1134087) on Tuesday September 27, 2011 @10:07PM (#37535394) Homepage
        Parent is correct. The US is one of the best places for free speech. The general situation is just that much worse.
        • The US is not a signatory to various important UN conventions on human rights. This means that while the US government might make a nominal effort to protect the free speech of it's own citizens, it has no obligation to protect the rights of the other 96% of the worlds population - and consequently, it makes no discernable effort to do so.

          We (the 96%) consequently don't intend to entrust ourselves to such an organisation - better for it to be left to no-one, or otherwise the UN, who will, at least recogni

          • by readin (838620)
            The UN isn't elected by people, it is made up of governments - many or most of which rule by fear rather than by legitimate democratic means.

            A UN convention is more often a taint than an indicator of good intentions.

            "otherwise the UN, who will, at least recognise my inherent rights" Is this the same UN that recognizes the inherent right of the People's Republic of China to do whatever is necessary to take away the freedoms of the people of Taiwan?
            • The UN isn't elected by people, it is made up of governments - many or most of which rule by fear rather than by legitimate democratic means.

              The US government is not elected by the people either. In that the vast majority of people don't elect the US government, so they should not be subjected to it's whims. What is that saying? Oh yeah. No internet control without representation. Sound familiar? The British government of the 1800s was democratically elected, yet I notice that the unrepresented people of the time didn't find that compromise satisfactory.

              A UN convention is more often a taint than an indicator of good intentions.

              Was it good intentions that led to 100s of thousands of deaths in Iraq? What about Pakistan?

              • The vetoes wielded by the permanent members of the security council are to prevent a bloc of small despotic countries from consolidating their votes to protect and advance their authoritarian rulers and dictatorships. Just look at the members of the UN Human Rights Council. There is also enough disagreement amongst the permanent members to prevent one powerful country from always getting their way. The permanent members are far from perfect in their behavior but it is these countries who shoulder the large
                • Hence my point - the U.N. is flawed, but unilateral control of the internet by the U.S is dictatorship - a situation that is unacceptable.
          • The US is not a signatory to various important UN conventions on human rights. This means that while the US government might make a nominal effort to protect the free speech of it's own citizens, it has no obligation to protect the rights of the other 96% of the worlds population - and consequently, it makes no discernable effort to do so.

            We (the 96%) consequently don't intend to entrust ourselves to such an organisation - better for it to be left to no-one, or otherwise the UN, who will, at least recognise my inherent rights and make some effort to uphold them. The US government does not, and would simply rollover and screw me if requested to do so by the Chinese or the Russians.

            This would the same UN that had bloody Libya, Iran and Syria, among other bastions of freedom, on their Commission on Human Rights (now the Human Rights Council). You really think turning over the keys to the kingdom to that bunch of morons is a good idea? Really?

            And if you really think the US would just do whatever China or Russia wanted with the Internet just because they asked I want some of what you're smoking.

            • by AmiMoJo (196126)

              This would the same UN that had bloody Libya, Iran and Syria, among other bastions of freedom, on their Commission on Human Rights (now the Human Rights Council).

              If we want those countries to respect human rights it is better to involve them in the process rather than just preaching at them. At the very least it forces them to consider the issues and form a diplomatic position on them.

              Sometimes you have to work with the bad guys. We tried to stop the IRA by force for decades and failed, but once they were involved with the peace process and subsequent democracy they quickly came round and ended up working with their sworn enemies.

              • This would the same UN that had bloody Libya, Iran and Syria, among other bastions of freedom, on their Commission on Human Rights (now the Human Rights Council).

                If we want those countries to respect human rights it is better to involve them in the process rather than just preaching at them. At the very least it forces them to consider the issues and form a diplomatic position on them.

                Sometimes you have to work with the bad guys. We tried to stop the IRA by force for decades and failed, but once they were involved with the peace process and subsequent democracy they quickly came round and ended up working with their sworn enemies.

                You're right that engagement is generally preferable to unremitting hostility. However, that works where you're going to be negotiating and coming to common ground as opposed to handing over voting, and possibly controlling, interest to something that said powers are incredibly hostile to. Would we want China having a significant, or any, say in what should or should not be filtered online?

            • This would the same UN that had bloody Libya, Iran and Syria, among other bastions of freedom, on their Commission on Human Rights (now the Human Rights Council). You really think turning over the keys to the kingdom to that bunch of morons is a good idea? Really?

              Well, people just have to realize what the UN actually is. It's not a world government. It's a soapbox meant to have all nations be a part of it so that the ones with differences can sort them out without warfare. For things like the Commissions an

          • You do realize that the worst abusers of human rights in the world have signed those "UN conventions on human rights"? That those governments have been put on the UN Human Rights Commission (the UN organization that is supposed to investigate and sanction governments for violating human rights)?
            • Yes

              Your point - presumably - being, that those violators of human rights are nevertheless prepared to sign the conventions, whereas the U.S. is not prepared to do so, for fear that the acknowledgement of universal human rights might badly affect the strategic position of the U.S. on the world stage?

              And these are the guys you want us to trust with the management of the internet?

              Really?

              • My point being that those conventions are meaningless because many of those who have signed them have no intention of ever abiding by them. Even those countries which nominally abide by those conventions make it clear, by supporting membership on the "enforcement" commission of violators, that they only do so because of the political exigencies of the moment. The fact that a country has signed the UN human rights conventions tells you absolutely nothing about that country's actual human rights policies nor
        • Mod parent up. It sounds like apologism or a "the other guys are worse" cop out, but it's the sad, sad truth.

    • by joocemann (1273720) on Tuesday September 27, 2011 @10:48PM (#37535730)

      And in truth, no country NEEDS to come to any agreement about it. If china doesn't like facebook, they can try to police their people, or just cut the pipes off physically; and its up to the Chinese people to actually control their government and get what they want, if they even care. The same goes for every other situation out there, and even here in the US we may one day be faced with the situation where we use democracy to protect net neutral internet (right now actually) or literally stand up and regain democracy.

      If a GOVERNMENT wants to modify, restrict, manipulate, etc, the internet within its capacity, its borders, then so be it. If the people who are responsible for that government, its citizens, are not in agreement with their own government, then its their duty to force that agreement by democracy or popular revolution. They are responsible for what their government does, theoretically and realistically. And no matter how much you can disagree with me or pretend you're not responsible, you still are; scarily enough, there is no opt-out for citizenship in the world. There's no designated anarchist area for those who disagree and won't be responsible. If you disagree but feel the country is out of control, its your duty to inform your peers and restore informed democracy. Participation is obligate; responsibility is inherent.

      • by AmiMoJo (196126)

        The problem is that the US doesn't mind taking down foreign sites that use .org, .com or .net TLDs on the grounds of alleged copyright infringement etc with no legal recourse available. People on Slashdot often point out that some countries consider large parts of the net to be illegal because they show women no wearing full face veils etc. but apparently then it violates a US law it's okay.

        The fact that the US controls all TLDs is unacceptable to many people. That includes individual country codes which th

        • The thing is that there does not exist an international organization that has not demonstrated that it would be as bad or worse as the U.S. government on these issues.
        • by ccandreva (409807)

          The problem is that the US doesn't mind taking down foreign sites that use .org, .com or .net TLDs on the grounds of alleged copyright infringement etc with no legal recourse available. People on Slashdot often point out that some countries consider large parts of the net to be illegal because they show women no wearing full face veils etc. but apparently then it violates a US law it's okay.

          The fact that the US controls all TLDs is unacceptable to many people.

          Our of curiosity, if it was so acceptable, then why did you all connect to our Internet in the first place ?

          I mean, if I go to someone's party, and I don't like the music they play, I leave. I don't bitch and moan they should play what I like.

          • by ccandreva (409807)

            ARGH -- that shouldbe "if it was so UNacceptable ..."

          • by AmiMoJo (196126)

            No country decided to simply plug in, it was individual organisations and companies deciding to connect. The internet became essential for every major economy but it happened slowly over time. We are now in a situation where we can't just leave, and in fact much of what the US gains from the existence of the internet comes from the rest of the world so you wouldn't want us to either.

            Anyway, we invented the web. Germany invented MPEG audio and video compression that is now fundamental to many services. Much

        • Is there some reason that the U.N. cannot set up an international equivalent to ICANN and announce it to the world? Given time and the proper campaign, couldn't such a name distributor become mroe popular and, thus, exert more control than the U.S. ICANN? Or, hell, for that matter, is there a reason we can't set up an open, non-profit, distributed system like ICANN and try to get that established as the status quo?

          I am asking this seriously. My background is not in networking, and I don't know enough abo
          • by AmiMoJo (196126)

            It would only work if every ISP decided to reconfigure their DNS servers and routers to use it, and there in lies the problem.

            • Did you say changing a couple settings was a problem? No. Wealth schizm is a problem. Materialism is a problem. Pocessed foods are a problem. Changing a couple settings and brief downtime is hardly a problem for people to endure.

              How about the worlds' resources being hoarded by an extremely small group of people, leaving most humans in a less than optimal condition? That's a problem.

    • Why ? Are you seriously under the illusion that even 50% of the human race even wants free speech ?

      I'm asking this question, not because I truly do not see the value of free speech, but because that's the question that's being asked in the "united nations" GA. There is general agreement that free speech and western imperialism are synonyms.

      That's the real issue with multiple cultures. You best be prepared for the realization that there's exactly 1 culture that values free speech. All other cultures want big

      • Europe's case is funny. Did you know that Germany's censorship was first introduced by the U.S. Army, which banned, confiscated and destroyed thousands of book titles, and censored the media?

        So much for the US being a defender of Free Speech.

        • by paiute (550198)

          Europe's case is funny. Did you know that Germany's censorship was first introduced by the U.S. Army, which banned, confiscated and destroyed thousands of book titles, and censored the media?

          So much for the US being a defender of Free Speech.

          Yeah, the U.S. Army totally repressed the hell out of that Schicklgruber fellow.

    • I don't know...

      I saw this study by Reporters Without Borders on freedom of the press [rsf.org], and the U.S. wasn't in the top 10%. Then, I saw this study by Privacy International on privacy [privacyinternational.org], and it wasn't pretty for the US. Freedom of speech must be correlated to freedom of press and privacy. And sure, you can find studies about everything with any result... these are mine. :)

      My point is that maybe, not in theory but in practice, sharing governance is the way to go if freedom of speech is the key indicator.

      • by JasterBobaMereel (1102861) on Wednesday September 28, 2011 @03:22AM (#37537160)

        Reporters without borders includes self censorship and financial pressure on journalists, which unfortunately means that in the US where you *can* publish anything, people tend not to publish anything too controversial, or that will lose them money, or that will annoy their sponsors, or that people will sue them over ... which means that a lot goes unreported

        There are other countries were you cannot publish specific things, but almost anything else is allowed and not discouraged in the same way as it is in the US ...

      • Since we're there, treatment of press is considered our responsibility. Historically, press has been generally restricted in war zones. That's also a generally dangerous place, so when a reporter gets killed it goes on our tally.

        They are also political. Mumia Abu Jamal is in prison because he murdered a police officer. However, since he also plays journalist they are on his side, and consider his incarceration to be an attack on journalism.

      • by TheSync (5291)

        "Freedom of speech must be correlated to freedom of press and privacy."

        Privacy is inversely related to press freedom. There are many countries where privacy and slander laws are used as weapons against the press.

        • My rationale was: if there's a free press, everyone can give its PoV. And, if everyone's privacy is respected, then anonymity is possible and they can speak freely without fearing retribution. But you raise an interesting point...

  • It's the only way to defeat 'governance'.. Nothing personal, mind you. It's strictly business..

    • by crutchy (1949900)
      it already exists. google represents a poofteenth of the "internet" at large

      much of the internet underground is driven by ppp networks (including torrent clients and the like)

      the corporate world is trying to take some measure of control over it (legal threats to torrent users) but it will never stop

      the online porn industry is also a major supporter of internet anarchy, and its one of the most profitable industries in the world

      if hackers decide to turn their botnets toward the root dns infrastruc
      • by JordanL (886154)
        This is actually quite true. The Internet already exists in a state where it could be dismantled even in pieces. Botnets, or even organized effort, directly against the root DNS servers would already cripple the Internet in every meaningful way. Or DoSing certain important routers/switches in the network.

        The point being, in this particular situation, governments can more easily censor, but people wield the WMDs. Self-destruction isn't a particularly good method of fighting, but suppose things began to ch
  • But how long will it continue to be able to do so?

    As long as it doesn't start seizing domains arbitrarily, domains that have been ruled perfectly legal in their countries. Like rojadirecta.me. As long as people do not feel the need to create Firefox extensions to circumvent some stupid domain seizures, and as long as your government doesn't fuck with Mozilla to try and fail to get the extension removed.

    Oh wait...

    • by mellon (7048)

      At present, you can't go to jail, or be compelled, to not run those extensions. This is actually a pretty big deal, even though I tend to agree with the sentiment of some here who think things are pretty bad WRT free speech in the U.S. We have a serious structural free speech problem, but we don't have government control of speech in the sense that it exists in a lot of countries.

      We also don't have control over the Internet, something that TFA sort of glosses over. Control over the root zone of the DNS

  • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Tuesday September 27, 2011 @09:34PM (#37535152)
    Give each country its own DNS. Then create a simple, automated, neutral central hub that connects all those servers together.

    That way, they can all play their own little games, and who the hell cares? The free and open parts of the network will still win out in the long run.
    • by exploder (196936)

      Give each country its own DNS. Then create a simple, automated, neutral central hub that connects all those servers together.

      That way, they can all play their own little games, and who the hell cares? The free and open parts of the network will still win out in the long run.

      Riiiiight, that should be real simple, both technically and politically.

      • Well, politics always dictate the solution. So yes, technically it would be a clusterfuck from there. But in theory, I could see each nation running their own set of root servers with trust relationships between. That's not to say however that your primary nation of residence will not override those records legally belonging to another nation.

        • "That's not to say however that your primary nation of residence will not override those records legally belonging to another nation."

          Precisely. But who cares? Let each nation do whatever it wants within its own borders. The idiots will sink themselves. The others will prosper.

          • In principle don't have a problem with that. However, that might pose a problem for businesses with international branch offices. At that point, you would have to rely on DNS requests tunneled through a pinned up VPN and/or local host files. PITA is what that would be.

            • Not at all. They would all be connected together, just as they are now. Why would you need a VPN?

              Of course, you could have a problem if you are trying to access an internet side for a subsidiary that is in a country that has blocked/censored its internet. But in that case, WTF are you doing, engaging in business there anyway? Shame on you. I have no sympathy.
    • by Pence128 (1389345)
      Or do away with DNS all together. I can't remember the last time I typed in a domain name.
    • by Willbur (196916)

      Give each country its own DNS. [snip]

      Each country already has its own DNS. Country code domain names have been around for a long time. Maintaining the root servers that point to the country codes doesn't need to be an automated system. I'd hand it over to the group that agrees on the country codes: the UN.

      What you're really suggesting is getting rid of non-country code domain names. All those 'blah.com' addresses would need to choose one or more country codes to occupy... 'blah.com.us' or 'blah.co.uk' or ... . This would be an improvemen

      • by perpenso (1613749)

        All those 'blah.com' addresses would need to choose one or more country codes to occupy... 'blah.com.us' or 'blah.co.uk' or ... . This would be an improvement on the current situation

        Why? The contrary seems to be true at first glance. If a user fails to enter a country code there needs to be some default. What should that default be? The local country would often be wrong and users now need to know where the company is located.

      • if you buy (online) from stuff.us then us laws apply, from stuff.uk then uk laws apply. Sounds simple to me.
        • It is simple. That's the way mail order has been working for close to 200 years, and I don't see any reason for it to change.
      • "Each country already has its own DNS."

        I could have made that clearer. What I meant was to give each country its own root server for use within its own borders. Others could access domains on that server if it were open, but a country could choose to close it off if it wanted... it's theirs, let them do as they please.

        But yes, each country would have its own TLD like now, except that every domain would be within that TLD.

        I don't get your point about the laws... they need not be any different than they are now: buy from a US site, obey the

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        What you're really suggesting is getting rid of non-country code domain names.

        HELL YES. There is nothing good about them. Let them all burn. Or more to the point, move them all under .us.

    • by geekmux (1040042)

      "Give each country its own DNS. Then create a simple, automated, neutral central hub that connects all those servers together..."

      (TLD4) "Ahhh, umm, Helloooo? Shit, who's country of computers do I gotta take over to get some respect around here..."

  • 1) Deprecate SSL in favor of a web of trust; a decentralized pool of user verifiable certifiers as mentioned before on this site.
    2) Use the above to encrypt all your web sites.
    3) Watch as the concept spreads and a significant percentage of personal content on the web is encrypted as such, after which businesses and browser makers follow through by popular demand.
    4) See the old status quo become deprecated. Meanwhile, all countries filtering this "illegal technology" see their internet go stale, and event
  • by cfulmer (3166) on Tuesday September 27, 2011 @09:46PM (#37535242) Homepage Journal
    Who are all these groups and people who think THEY have the right to control the internet? What happened to the idea that the Internet was going to be self-governing? The UN can't even manage its own budget.
    • Neither can the US, and they have a pretty atrocious record on free speech lately...

      • by cfulmer (3166)
        Yeah, I don't want the US government in charge either. Have we lost the "Keep your hands off my Internet" war?
  • by Commontwist (2452418) on Tuesday September 27, 2011 @09:51PM (#37535280)

    The best thing about the Internet was the tearing down of borders and connecting the world as one big place.

    Governments (and some corporations) want to put borders back up. It's in their nature to attempt for more and more control over their fiefdoms.

    Fortunately, most citizens are used to the concept of the Internet as it stands right now and governments are facing a lot of accumulated inertia.

    Of course, the US government is tapped into a lot of their portion of the pie and China firewalls their nation. True global cooperation to control the Internet as a single entity is... unlikely anytime soon.

    Personally, I really hope someone develops technology that can take control of the Internet out of the hands of governments altogether, creating a virtual country in its own right. Again, unlikely, but I can dream, can't I?

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The US and EU have similar plans under NSTIC and Eurim_IdEa, which are public-private partnerships meant to shift casual web browsing into an identified state that's government-friendly. Watch what Microsoft and G+ do: probably they will both try to get a piece of this pie.

    I'm not happy with "over there" smugness about China and Russia: western governments are also building serious tools to increase their power at the expense of civil liberties, and in the end I think the more subtle tools they're building

  • "...But how long will it continue to be able to do so?"

    When the general view of "Freedom" is defined better by some other state, then I feel the power will shift. Right now, we hold the best definition, which is why we are favored. Whether that shifts or not entirely depends on our Governments continuance of tasteless discourse to destroy what many have given their life to defend. Our Military proves we are no match, but it will be the cancer of Government that will ultimately eat us to the bone.

    • Even if some majority of internet-using-nations decides to have a lesser sense of 'freedom' as a structure for the internet, my government will give me the freedom my constitution enforces. And if said majority tries to stop us, manipulate, or damage that freedom, I'll vote accordingly to send DEFENSE of my freedom wherever it is needed.

      The rest of the world can give it all up for all I care, but its not happening here --- my point being that even if it happens here, it won't. We the people will be free, a

    • "...But how long will it continue to be able to do so?"

      When the general view of "Freedom" is defined better by some other state, then I feel the power will shift. Right now, we hold the best definition, which is why we are favored. Whether that shifts or not entirely depends on our Governments continuance of tasteless discourse to destroy what many have given their life to defend. Our Military proves we are no match, but it will be the cancer of Government that will ultimately eat us to the bone.

      Wow; the best example of cognitive dissonance I've ever seen. You think you have the best definition of freedom but then go on to say you government promotes "tasteless discourse to destroy what many have given their life to defend". But, your "military proves you (we) are no match". Your government will "eat us to the bone". What was your original point again? Oh, that your government has the best defined general view of freedom. Umm. Huh? "What you talkin' about Willis?" Get off my lawn.

      • by geekmux (1040042)

        Wow; the best example of cognitive dissonance I've ever seen. You think you have the best definition of freedom but then go on to say you government promotes "tasteless discourse to destroy what many have given their life to defend". But, your "military proves you (we) are no match". Your government will "eat us to the bone". What was your original point again? Oh, that your government has the best defined general view of freedom. Umm. Huh? "What you talkin' about Willis?" Get off my lawn.

        My point was by looking at the Constitution, we have likely the best definition of freedom. It's just too bad that we barely recognize that document anymore, and the interpretation of those freedoms have been hashed over and over through the years, slowly stripping them away, under guises such as the ironically titled "PATRIOT Act". That being said, it's still likely the best interpretation out there by comparison.

        And yes, the upside is our military is no match. The downside is we've bankrupted an entire

    • When the general view of "Freedom" is defined better by some other state,

      .. well, freedom is well defined in the American constitution. if only it was applied to American politics.

  • Technology moves faster than law. As long as the Internet can route packets from point A to point B, the lawmakers will have little say over what those packets contain. We may be driven to encryption, darknets, or something besides DNS, but it won't really matter in the end.

  • The idea of states controlling even parts of the Internet is grotesque. The Internet is a network where almost any two computers can communicate, and it doesn't care about national borders. Globalization makes single states and their governments less and less important, so they try to seize new forms of power: power over communication.

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