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Only a Government Would Have Created the Internet

Duncan Black:

Eschaton: I think the aspect of the "government invented the internet" which isn't emphasized enough is that it isn't just some random fluke that it was born out of various public and publicly financed entities. A private company would not have created it. Before the internet (or www, depending on precisely what we're talking about) we had various pre-internets, which were all cool enough in their own way and offered various applications, information, and services to people. In some ways the were superior to the internet of old, but they weren't the "informtaion superhighway" which we could all just hook into any way we wanted. It wasn't so much the technology, though it was that too, it was the idea, and it isn't an idea a for-profit company would have pursued in nearly the same way.

In some ways we're seeing the return to the pre-internet version, though the actual internet still exists. Facebook polices content, and people expect them to for reasons I can't fathom…