October 15, 2008

My _Guardian_ column on truth, Tim Berners-Lee, World Wide Web Foundation

Please, Sir Tim Berners Lee: try investigating how corporations rule the net

"Seth Finkelstein on Tim Berners-Lee who raises the issue of separating truth from fiction on the internet"

[Note: I didn't pick that title - my own suggested title was 'Tim Berners-Lee takes on "The Net of a Million Lies"']

Here I discuss the ever-popular topic of finding truth among the lies. But I hope I acknowledged some of the cliches about the subject, and got beyond them a little.

Long-time net civil-liberties people might enjoy the references to the old "PICS" ("Platform for Internet Content Selection") proposals, which I sardonically note were derided as "Platform for Internet Censorship System".

I also weave in the effect of Google, from the uncommon angle that it's algorithmic technology wasn't very successful until the company turned into a advertising-selling platform. There's a profound lesson there.

[For all columns, see the page Seth Finkelstein | guardian.co.uk.]

By Seth Finkelstein | posted in censorware , google , press | on October 15, 2008 08:20 PM (Infothought permalink)
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In your Guardian column on 16th October you write: "There's been an extensive and widespread attack on non-market civic institutions..." What does this mean, please?

Posted by: Peter Duffy at October 16, 2008 09:36 AM

It's a fancy way of saying "organization of people, but not business/corporations" - i.e. "universities to trade unions to government". That is, what are the big blocks of power in a society, especially those which are involved in ideas? Who is studying, reading, writing, etc?

Posted by: Seth Finkelstein at October 16, 2008 11:19 AM