The World Wide Web was invented 25 years ago this year. Today, on its homepage, Google asked school children this question: If you could invent one thing to make the world a better place…
For obvious reasons I am not eligible for Google’s question but it made me to think of this.
If you could invent one thing to make the world a better place…I would invent a World Wide Web where everyone comes out of hiding. Where everyone uses their real name. Where everyone stops trying to re-invent themselves as something they are not and lives the lives they have, containing their success and failures, just like real human beings.
I would invent a World Wide Web that accepts the fact that while people may be entitled to privacy they are not entitled to anonymity and it various disguises and hiding places. Anonymity cannot be construed to be capable of granting freedom nor equality; it does neither.
I would invent a World Wide Web with a place where where users could opt to become citizens and, as such, have greater freedoms and rights not available to all, just like being a citizen of any other community or country. I’d accomplish this very simply: Give each opt-in individual the ability to communicate with anonymous users or not. No over seers required. Rights. Privileges. Responsibilities: Just like it says on any diploma you’ve ever earned.
I would invent a World Wide Web where we stop pretending the web is unlike the real world and see that it is exactly like the real world. In fact, the World Wide Web is just like the real world-only more so.