The Internet And The Emperors

This image shows Nicolas Sarkozy who is presid...Image via WikipediaI have liked what Sarkozy has done for Libya. (The Arab Revolutions And My Rethinks On Britain And France) But the guy is on the wrong side of history on the Internet. For a guy who has sought to bring American style individualism and entrepreneurship to his country, he is missing out.

Some of the rants by Sarkozy remind me of a story I read a long time ago that I just tried to look up on the Internet but was not able to find. There was this king. Some of his citizens came to him to report the river in the kingdom had flooded. Don't you worry, the king replied, I will command the river to stop flooding.

The Internet is a genie out of the bottle. That is not an argument to legalize drugs and prostitution. The opposite is true. The massive scale actions that need to be taken to tackle the biggest problems and challenges of our times can not even be imagined without the Internet. The massive data collection that we need to do to tackle global warming is about building an Internet of things. We have to add intelligence to our entire ecosystem so we take real time readings on all metrics to do with the global environment. Globalization minus the Internet would be chaos. But with the Internet globalization will lead to creations of unprecedented levels of wealth in all parts of the world. Cross cultural understandings are not possible without the Internet. Minus the Internet the governments of the world are too cocky, too inefficient, too inept, if not outright despotic and cruel. Minus the Internet a no name black man could not have ended up in the White House. The Internet is a tool with which to cure poverty, to end human trafficking, to end sex slavery. The Internet is the tool with which to bring democracy into every country.

This is the Internet Century.
“But the Internet is changing every institution in society. It enables new approaches to innovation, requiring new thinking about patents and copyright. It renders old institutions naked, requiring more transparency on the part of governments and corporations. It disrupts old models of learning and pedagogy demanding a change a relationship between students and teachers in the learning process. It offers new models of democracy based on a culture of public discourse, in turn compelling old style politicians to engage their citizens. It turns intellectual property into bits, that don’t know the old rules that governed atoms of how to behave. It drops the transaction costs of dissent, subjecting dictators and tyrants to the power of mass participation. It breaks down national boundaries and requiring a rethinking of how peoples everywhere can cooperate to solve global problems. And for the first time in history children are an authority on the most important innovation changing every institution in society.”
Don Tapscott: G8 and the Internet: Sarkozy Messes With a Good Thing (Via Infoneer Pulse)
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