The Internet has revolutionized the ways presidential candidates connect with potential voters. But what have the presidential candidates done in exchange to protect the network that's become essential to their efforts? Not much. No candidate, Democrat or Republican, has supported strong, pro-consumer encryption measures. Trump and Cruz have all challenged Apple's right to protect the security of its users from government snooping, and both Democratic candidates vaguely advocated for the FBI and Apple to work together for a solution. It's one thing for candidates to use the Internet to help mobilize their base. But it's not enough, unless they also recognize that protecting an open, secure and affordable Internet is essential to their own best interests, and to the future of democracy.
The framers of the Constitution couldn't have foreseen a time in which technology allowed more than 2.7 billion people to communicate worldwide via interconnected digital platforms. This exponential growth of speech is without precedent -- and it requires us to be clear on who the real speakers are.
STOCKHOLM -- The Internet has already become the most important infrastructure of the world. And that's just the beginning. Soon it will also be the infrastructure of all of our other infrastructures. So far, the governance of the net has been a biosphere of informal and formal institutions with multiple stakeholders having a say, but none having a dominating influence. But the dynamics of its development would not have been possible without the strong role of the tech community.
We are all on this life journey together. We all have a voice. I use mine to communicate, to understand others, and to make the world a kinder place to live in. By spewing your commentary, it makes me wonder what else you do in life that pushes us all backwards in anger, instead of forwards in compassion.
Over the last few months, things have been looking good for keeping the Internet open to everyone. A little too good, as far as Congress is concerned, which is why members and the corporate lobbyists who write them hefty checks have launched a last-ditch legislative effort to scuttle net neutrality.
The Internet is simply an effective tool for connecting people. Whether the network becomes a force for good or evil is up to its users. It's only because millions of people have mobilized in defense of our rights to connect and communicate that the Internet pendulum occasionally swings toward doing good.
Have human rights principles been consigned to a museum because they prevented the combined forces of China's dictatorship and business community from asserting themselves? That at least is the impression you get from the moral lessons that the Communist Party's censorship apparatus increasingly deliver in no uncertain terms to Internet freedom advocates.
The challenger countries will once again try, as they did last December in Dubai, to wrest control from the coalition of stakeholders that has been governing the Internet under a contract with the U.S. government. If they succeed it will be the end of the world as we know it. There will be no Internet. There will be many nets: ChinaNet, Euronet, maybe Deutsche Net and France net and Brazil Net and Russia Net. It will resemble the world before the Internet with many private networks and a constant challenge of interconnection.