February 28, 2006 | Suw Charman Anderson

RSA/The Economist - The Internet's Golden Age is Over

I spoke last Thursday at the RSA/Economist's debate, The Internet's Golden Age is Over, arguing for the motion that it's basically doomed. Well, to put it in a more nuanced manner, I believe that the internet never really had a golden age, but if we don't act now, it never will. The three main threats are, I think, data retention, the end of net neutrality, and intermediary liability. If you want to hear me flesh out my arguments a bit more, then you can do so as the RSA has an MP3 of the evening available for download. I was joined on the side of the pessimistic by Professor John Naughton, and opposed by the optimistic Danny Meadows-Klue and Karen Thomson. The debate was ably chaired by The Economist's Tom Standage.

Comments (5)

  1. Simon Gibbs:
    Mar 01, 2006 at 12:32 AM

    What with the Irish gig and the talks I recorded at the last networking evening, do we have enough ongoing material to justify an Open Rights podcast?

  2. Suw Charman:
    Mar 01, 2006 at 08:24 AM

    Aaaah, yes. The podcast. I've personally been planning to do an digital rights podcast for over a year now, but things got in the way. It's something that *personally* I really want to do, and once I've got a few things finished up, I am going to start one. I even have access to a studio lined up, so it's all set to go.

  3. Simon Gibbs:
    Mar 01, 2006 at 02:20 PM

    I was thinking of something very simple just to aggregate and "productize" all the audio already arising out of ORG activities.

    Given that there are already at least 4 audio files in the first few months, its reasonable to assume an ongoing trickle of audio material will be generated without any extraordinary effort such as hiring a studio.

    Then again, if the opportunity is there...

  4. Suw Charman:
    Mar 01, 2006 at 05:12 PM

    Best bet for that would be to start a new page on the wiki for all audio/video. Easiest and quickest way to solve this problem right now.

  5. squashed:
    Mar 05, 2006 at 04:59 PM

    what on earth is he talking, about internet being past its prime. I for one think, we haven't even begun yet.

    imagine a situation where user can create their own wireless network, hence their own personal internet. That is the next big thing, after the introduction of wifi G.

    The proliferation of bittorrent groups indicates there is a big demand for specialized/personalized network that the internet IP cannot yet satisfy fully.

    and then there is the mattr of government snooping around the internet. sooner or later somebody will have had enough of it and make their own wide network just to keep snooper out.

    The future of internet will not be single big protocol as currently exist, it will be a network of network. Even bigger than currently exist. more data flowing about.