When The Creators Of Both The Internet And The Web Come Out Against The ITU, Shouldn't You Too?

from the just-saying... dept

We’ve been talking a lot about the ITU and its WCIT (World Conference on International Telecommunications) lately, given the importance of various proposals on the future of the internet. While Vint Cerf, often considered the “father of the internet” for his early (and continued!) contributions to the core of the internet, has been quite outspoken for many months about the threats of the ITU towards the internet, now we can add the creator of the World Wide Web to the list as well. Tim Berners-Lee has spoken out against the ITU efforts at WCIT.

Sir Tim is director of a standards body himself – the World Wide Web Consortium. He said that governments can already influence changes but should resist further interference.

“I think it’s important that these existing structures continue to be used without any attempt to bypass them,” he said.

“These organisations have been around for a number of years and I think it would be a disruptive threat to the stability of the system for people to try to set up alternative organisations to do the standards.” Accelerating access

[…] “A lot of concerns I’ve heard from people have been that, in fact, countries that want to be able to block the internet and give people within their country a ‘secure’ view of what’s out there would use a treaty at the ITU as a mechanism to do that, and force other countries to fall into line with the blockages that they wanted to put in place.”

When the fathers of both the internet itself and the World Wide Web are both speaking out against the ITU’s efforts to have further control over the future of the internet, isn’t it time to step back and ask what benefit the ITU would really provide. To date, none has been shown. Instead, we get vague talk about increasing “fairness” by diverting money from innovators to telcos who haven’t innovated with the promise that this will lead to greater investment. Yet, the evidence suggests that this doesn’t work, and historically, such transfers and subsidies tend to be pocketed by execs (or governments) rather than invested in infrastructure.

So, here we have two of the most visionary innovators out there — who created the key platforms we rely on — highlighting how the ITU process is the exact wrong way to go about things. Combine that with the key argument being made by the ITU being unsupportable based on history. And shouldn’t we all be wondering why this big charade is happening in the first place?

Filed Under: , , , , ,

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “When The Creators Of Both The Internet And The Web Come Out Against The ITU, Shouldn't You Too?”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
out_of_the_blue says:

Starting off the with the old "appeal to authority".

“When The Creators Of Both The Internet And The Web Come Out Against The ITU, Shouldn’t You Too?”

Now, I’m against the ITU, but let’s look at the implicit basis for your lead question: “two of the most visionary innovators out there” — Get a grip on your adulation, frat boy. They came WAY late to the computer party, after basic networking hardware and software of OSs and such were done; even Bill Gates at most only compiled a specific version of BASIC from university sources, then was able to buy Seattle DOS and re-name it MS-DOS — SO, these two have no very great claim to authority, either.

“And shouldn’t we all be wondering why this big charade is happening in the first place?”

It’s only you who wonder, Mike: I’m sure it’s a power grab. Been trying to tell ya, The Rich are taking over everything.

[Charity comment: for Mike after 90 minutes of none, plus for his fanboy-trolls to ad hom it up.]

Don’t let internet pioneer Mike “Streisand Effect” Masnick be forgotten on his own blog!
Think how we’d all be better off if he’d never made his one quip!

G Thompson (profile) says:

Re: Starting off the with the old "appeal to authority".

IGNORANUS – adj: A person who is not only ignorant, but is also an asshole
eg: out_of_the_blue is absolutely and unashamedly an Ignoranus

yep that’s going to be my only Tagline and comment to anything ootb says any more. Anything else is just pandering to his ego by making people argue with him.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: lol U WOT ?

I was gonna post…..

inb4 “but Al Gore invented the Internet”

Never thought, I would have had to post……

inb4 Tim Berners Lee didn’t make the first ever Web browser

inb4 Tim Berners Lee didn’t make the first ever Web server(CERN httpd)

inb4 Tim Berners Lee didn’t EVEN MAKE THE NAME “”World-Wide Web””

I honestly did not comprehend your level of retard out there.

inb4 I am a Mike whiteknighting fanboy
You just went full retard over facts you don’t like.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: lol U WOT ?

Some of the important people associated with crucial inventions regarding the internet:

Paul Baran (1960-1964) (Packet switching technology)
Leonard Kleinrock (1961-1979) (Packet network theory, TCP/IP, hierarchical routing)
Vint Cerf, Robert Kahn (1969-1976) (TCP/IP)
Paul Mochapetris (1983) (DNS)
Tim Berners-Lee (1989-1992) (World Wide Web, HTTP, HTML)
Marc Andreessen and Eric Bina (1992-1995)(Web browsers Mosaic and Netscape Navigator)
Lou Montulli (1994-1995) (Netscape Navigator, HTTP cookies, HTTP proxy)
Allison Mankin and Scott Bradner (1993-1996) (IPv6)

Of course there are more important inventions and I have left out hardware, but it is pretty much where things are at.

If someone asks “who invented the internet?”, the answer should therefore be “uhhhh, lots’a people!” or “Duuhhh?”

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: lol U WOT ? (me again)

Some players in the team score winning goals.
You can’t just disregard that.
I never disregarded anyone’s contribution. You did.

“”If someone asks “who invented the internet?”, the answer should therefore be “uhhhh, lots’a people!” or “Duuhhh?”“”

Agree, but if someone asks “who invented the www, the web browser, the web server and the type of hyperlinking the internet relies on ?”
Answer = Tim Berners Lee
Of course that doesn’t disregard all the invented technologies he relied on.
If anything when you look into it further you learn that without “that pass from the corner, he never would have scored the winning goal”.

He did score a winning goal tho.
He could easily have missed it.
No one else may have ever been in the position to score.
You can’t disregard that*.

Anonymous Coward says:

no one should be in control of the Internet. we can thank the US government for instigating all this crap. had they not tried to do exactly what the ITU are doing, tried to introduce ridiculous, freedom and privacy-removing laws, all done underhanded and lacking transparency, with no inclusion of the public, threaten other countries to fall into line and continue to do it even now under TPP, maybe, just maybe we wouldn’t be in this position where every self-serving, self-interested body on the Planet wants to be in control of what should be free for everyone and forever, not to make anything work better or be more accessible, but just to make more money! when you have industries like the US entertainment industries telling the whole world what they can do and cant do, what they can have and cant have, what they can download or view and what they cant download or view, we are in serious shit! they are even telling us that no one can have the privacy of anonymity on the net, again over money! what an absolute fucking shambles we have allowed them to put in place, all over music or movie files!!

The Real Michael says:

Re: Re:

These people at the ITU, as well as the content industries, do not care how many others’ lives they have to step on in order to get their way. They want an internet filtered from the top to the bottom, similar to state & corporate-run TV outlets. Using this method, they are in a comfortable position to control the ebb and flow of information, keep tabs on the public, filter out unwanted criticism and dissent, cripple independent culture, and give certain favored businesses tremendous advantages in the marketplace.

The only way for the people at the top to acquire more power and influence is for the public to sacrifice some of its own …by force.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Politicians are beginning to fear the Internet as it allows people to self organize without their services, such as mapping and translation efforts following disasters such as earthquakes, or hurricanes like sandy. People are beginning to realize that the libertarians have it right, voluntary co-operation can solve problems faster that the politicians who claim that their role is to organize and regulate people.
s their is no real organization to attack, the only other option is to control the communications to prevent this self organization.

shawnubis says:

Re: exactly

I agree. I think if our mighty government had had the insight to create their own, proprietary, self monitored, defense grade internet, that did NOT rely on the public sector in the first place, this would be a no-issue. The govt has not right to “own” the internet for the sake of our (the people’s) best interest. Any time the govt has to provide the people with security, we lose liberties.

Anonymous Coward says:

I don’t think governments understand how DNS came about, it was not imposed it was the one protocol that everybody agreed to use and trust, others tried and failed, any attempt to control the DNS system could undermines the trust people have on and make everybody migrate to another one, is not like is difficult, you just need to configure you computer to access a new layer and that can be done as easily as downloading the right software.

e.g.: GNUNet it has its own routing system including its own type of DNS.

Modplan (profile) says:

There’s an interesting counter point at Technollama that suggests much of this is overblown, and is more to do with maintaining the status quo rather than legitimate fears:


Berners-Lee seems to end up playing precisely into this with the quoted part:

“I think it’s important that these existing structures continue to be used without any attempt to bypass them,” he said.

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...