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"Murphy was an optimist!"

Internet Access a Fundamental Right March 8, 2010 5:31 am

Posted by Doug McCaughan in : Communications, Of Interest, Technology
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In 1988, I was introduced to this thing called the Internet. At the time, I was told there were 25,000 nodes on the Internet. I have since tried to confirm that number and come up with a number more like 66,000. The Internet at the time was somewhat elitist. Today, the BBC published an article suggesting that 4 out of 5 people believe access to the Internet is a fundamental right. Even the UN agrees. This line of thinking places Internet access on par with roads, waste, and water.

It’s fascinating to have witnessed the growth of such a world changing technology. I’m embarrassed to admit that around 1992 when commercialization of the Internet was being discussed that I was among those saying commercialization would destroy the Internet. When the Internet moved from strictly the domains of the universities and military in 1994, I was proven wrong.

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1. NookSurfer - March 8, 2010

I don’t think it should be a “right”, it’s a luxury that people have gotten use to. Just like driving, you don’t have the “right” to drive, you’re given the privilege.

2. Doug McCaughan - March 8, 2010

Couldn’t we say the same thing about running water? I mean, using the United States as an example because I recognize that not every county has easily accessible or clean water, at one point not long ago people had to dig wells for water. Plumbing water into the house would have been considered a luxury. Now we come to expect that if we are thirsty, a water fountain or sink with free running water will be nearby. We have grown to think of water as a right. Or is water like driving in that we don’t have a right to water but we are given the privilege? I agree with your driving example in that driving is a privilege but the freedom to travel is a right (at least in the United States). So is water a privilege like driving or a right like travel?


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