Книга: Code 2.0

Part Five - Responses

Part Five - Responses

The argument of Part I was that the unregulability of the original Internet will pass. Architectures will develop to make behavior there regulable again. Part II described one aspect of that regulability — technology. “Code” will be an increasingly important part of that regulation, directly enforcing the control the law typically achieves through threats. Part III then considered three contexts in which changing technology would render ambiguous our commitments to fundamental values. This I called a latent ambiguity. How we protect IP, or privacy, or free speech will depend upon fundamental choices our framers didn’t make. Part IV then mapped this conflict to jurisdictions. Again, the lesson circles back to Part I: The tendency of government will push to an ever more regulable Net, this time to return the zones of geography to a borderless Internet.

Throughout these four parts, my central objective has been to force a recognition that is obvious once remarked: that there are choices to be made about how this network evolves. These choices will affect fundamentally what values are built into the network.

The question for this part is whether we’re capable of making those choices. My argument is that we’re not. We have so completely passed off questions of principle to the judicial branch, and so completely corrupted our legislative process with the backhand of handouts, that we confront this moment of extraordinary importance incapable of making any useful decisions. We have been caught off-guard, drunk on the political indulgence of an era, and the most we may be able to do is stay on our feet until we have time to sober up.

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