[Cerowrt-devel] Fwd: geeks, internet

William Allen Simpson william.allen.simpson at gmail.com
Wed Mar 31 06:39:35 EDT 2021

Thanks.  I didn't know about the internet-history mailing list.
If I survive my covid vaccination today, I'll join it.
(My father died within 4 hours of his 1st Moderna dose.)

Strongly agree with Karl Auerbach.  I've had the opportunity of
living with a (now former) Member of Congress for 20+ years.

As I've said many times, all human interaction involves politics.
We Internauts designing and implementing standards are also
involved in politics, but are very bad at it.

On 3/31/21 12:17 AM, Dave Taht wrote:
> I note I really like the internet history mailing list.
> ---------- Forwarded message ---------
> From: Dave Täht <dave at taht.net>
> Date: Tue, Mar 30, 2021 at 7:50 PM
> Subject: geeks, internet
> To: <dave.taht at gmail.com>
> ----- Forwarded message from the keyboard of geoff goodfellow via
> Internet-history <internet-history at elists.isoc.org> -----
> Date: Mon, 13 Jul 2020 06:52:58 -1000
> From: the keyboard of geoff goodfellow via Internet-history
>          <internet-history at elists.isoc.org>
> To: Internet-history <internet-history at elists.isoc.org>
> Subject: Re: [ih] Keep the geeks in charge of the internet
> ---------- Forwarded message ---------
> From: Karl Auerbach <karl at cavebear.com>
> Date: July 12, 2020 at 06:19:26 GMT+9
> That piece demonstrates why "geeks" should *not* run the Internet.
> Bodies such as ICANN have demonstrated time and time again that they are
> incapable of resisting capture by organized business interests, such as the
> trademark industry, and the domain name registry industry (which, though
> ICANN's decades long self-blindness has created a multi $Billion per year
> money pump of monopoly-rent profit.)
> Over the years I've spent a fair amount of  time among both "geeks" and
> "policymakers".
> There are definitely many very intelligent people in those camps.  However
> there are relative few "geeks" who understand economics, law, or social
> forces.  The same can be said of the policymakers - there are many who's
> depth of understanding of the Internet is no deeper than having an AOL
> email account.
> The voice of experts who know how a thing works, from top to bottom, is
> essential.  But our world is like the fabled elephant in the tale of the
> blind men who each perceive the creature as only the small piece that they
> can touch and do not comprehend the total.  Those who are experts in one
> field are often somewhat blind in other fields.
> This is why we need governance by entities that strive for a synoptic view,
> that operate on the basis of respect for all concerns and listen (and
> consider) all voices.  The organs of decision of such entities ought to be
> filled with intelligent, open-minded generalists.  Those generalists may
> not comprehend the entire elephant, but they will know that whatever it is,
> it is more than merely a tail or trunk or tree-like legs.
> (This is part of the foundation of my argument that STEM education needs to
> be balanced by a strong dose of liberal arts - we need to tune our
> educations machinery to create those smart generalists.)
> For many decades the Internet had an air gap from society.  That gap no
> longer exists.  The Internet is now a fundamental critical infrastructure.
> It is also being comprehended as a marvelous tool for control, data
> gathering, public-opinion shaping, profit making, and a force in national an
> international politics.
> Take the 5G push for example.  At its edges it is starting to give off a
> scent of attempting to be the new ISO/OSI.  There's some good stuff in 5G,
> as there was in ISO/OSI.  But the decisions about deployment of 5G, it's
> frequency bands, its use in vehicle-to-X communications, etc go well beyond
> the merely technical.
> If we let "the geeks" run the farm we can expect a lot of new Facebooks and
> Zuckerbergs - lots of technology without comprehension of, nor care for,
> the social impact.
> Do we really want to resurrect a world run by trade guilds?  Is one going
> to be required to go through an new kind of apprenticeship in order to have
> a say, a say that must be heard even if not accepted, in how we pull and
> turn the levers and knobs of our networks, health systems, power grids,
> food distribution systems, etc etc?
> Democracy, whether direct or representative, is our imperfect answer.  That
> path is hard, slow, inefficient, and frustrating. But it is necessary.
> We have to take care to learn from the past.  We ought to take a lesson
> from things like ICANN, where the voice of the public interest is muted
> under thick layers of complicated procedures, costs of effective
> participation, and competition from well-funded industrial interests.
>          --karl--
> On Sun, Jul 12, 2020 at 1:09 AM *the keyboard of geoff goodfellow
> <geoff at iconia.com <geoff at iconia.com>> wrote:*
>> *By enabling people and businesses to remain connected while under
>> lockdown, the Internet has helped to prevent the global economy from
>> collapsing entirely. And yet the engineer-led nonprofit organizations that
>> oversee the stable functioning of the global Internet are again under
>> attack.*
>> The coronavirus pandemic has rapidly transformed the internet into the
>> most critical infrastructure on Earth.
>> By enabling people and businesses to remain connected while under
>> lockdown, the internet has helped to prevent the global economy from
>> collapsing entirely. Indeed, with fear and social distancing continuing to
>> separate many of us, it has become the connective tissue for much human
>> interaction and economic activity around the world.
>> But few appreciate how this critical global resource has remained stable
>> and resilient since its inception, even as its scope and scale have
>> undergone uninterrupted explosive growth. In an age of widening political,
>> economic, and social divisions, how has the “one internet” connecting the
>> entire world been sustained? And how can we best continue to protect it?
>> The answers to both questions start with understanding what makes the
>> Internet — which consists of tens of thousands of disparate networks — look
>> like and function as one network for all. These components, or unique
>> internet identifiers, include Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, which are
>> associated with every device connected to the internet, and internet domain
>> names (like ft.com, harvard.edu or apple.news), which we use to search
>> for and connect to computers easily.
>> These unique identifiers ensure that, no matter where you are or which
>> network you are connected to, you will always get in touch with the right
>> computer with the desired domain name, or reach the right target device
>> with an embedded IP number (such as a smart thermostat, for example). This
>> simple, elegant architecture reflects the genius of a handful of brilliant
>> engineers who created the internet a half-century ago. Since then, it has
>> never failed to help us locate the billions of devices that have been added
>> to the thousands of networks that make up today’s cyber economy. Should the
>> identifiers fail, we would experience immediate digital chaos.
>> Given the identifiers’ critical role, it is imperative that they not be
>> compromised or controlled by any authority that is not committed to
>> maintaining the internet as an open, global, common good. In the wrong
>> hands, they could be used to fragment the Internet and enable top-down
>> control of usage and users by governments with malign intentions. And such
>> fears are real, given authoritarian governments’ online meddling in
>> elections, national security networks and digital commercial transactions
>> in the last few years.
>> So, the key question is who should be entrusted today to maintain the
>> security and reliability of internet identifiers. The answer is simple:
>> geeks, not governments...
>> [...]
>> https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/geeks-not-governments-should-control-the-internet-by-fadi-chehade-2020-07
>> https://www.japantimes.co.jp/opinion/2020/07/11/commentary/world-commentary/keep-geeks-charge-internet/
> --
> Geoff.Goodfellow at iconia.com
> living as The Truth is True
> --
> Internet-history mailing list
> Internet-history at elists.isoc.org
> https://elists.isoc.org/mailman/listinfo/internet-history
> ----- End forwarded message -----
> --
> My email server only sends and accepts starttls encrypted mail in transit.
> One benefit - it stops all spams thus far, cold. If you are not encrypting
>   by default you are not going to get my mail or I, yours.

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