[governance] FW: TP: city government exercising policy on Google Applications / consumer rights / Consumer Protection Act / trial period
lehto.paul at gmail.com
Tue Jul 12 08:19:10 EDT 2011
On 7/12/11, Daniel Kalchev <daniel at digsys.bg> wrote:
> Internet has happened and was successful decades ago, only because it is
> the largest independently owned PRIVATE network of networks in the
> world. Nobody own the Internet. Many own small parts of it. Governments
> resisted Internet for many, many years, throwing large amounts of money
> and political pressure as a means to stop it's development.
The internet originated in governmental efforts and could not exist
without the robust legal infrastructure and some physical
infrastructure provided by governments. Granted, the government
physical infrastructure component is more limited than in many other
areas, and governments have both been silent and/or had their further
involvement in the internet resisted in some powerful quarters, but
governmental silence or resistance to government does not mean
government doesn't play a formative role, past and present.
To give but one example: Who would deny that ICANN was started by the
US government, or that even after "freeing" ICANN that the US
government in particular does not retain some forms of actual or
potential power or influence on ICANN? Many examples could be given
of governmental roles and contributions (good or bad) beyond ICANN.
Your CAPITALIZED assertion that the internet is PRIVATE combined with
its attempt to give all credit for the internet to the private sector
is a distortion of the facts, past and present. The internet is
essentially "more private" than other sectors.
But, what "private" really means in this area is that large corporate
"stakeholders" in the internet directly and de facto make the law of
the internet, via contracts and terms of service that are then
enforced by governmental courts around the world. Functionally, this
means that private corporations have stepped into governmental shoes
to a large extent as law-makers, making the private laws of contract
that nevertheless bind other users, and do so in court, if desired and
necessary. But this takeover of the law-making function by private
entities is not total (as you seem to imply), nor should it be.
And, nor COULD the internet be entirely private, even in theory:
Even the most radical libertarian "free" market theorists agree that a
rather robust series of governmental involvement in the form of
contract laws and so forth are necessary structures to support "free,
private" markets. There's a great deal of choice in how those
contract rules are drafted, and debate as to what rules best support
"free markets" even among like-minded theorists.
Thus, there's no getting around the necessity for government
involvement at a material level. The real issue is to what extent, if
any, government ought to abdicate or forego its traditional roles in
the context of the internet.
Paul Lehto, J.D.
> This world has seen enough failed 'telecomunications infrastructure'
> attempts. Internet is what it is because it is not that. The day it
> becomes part of the taxation scheme and therefore strictly regulated
> will be the day Internet will die and be replaces with the next
> multi-stakeholder private network. Internet by itself is free, because
> those who built it and operate it wish so. In most countries the
> government cannot steal private property with ease.
> If we talk about providing services based on Internet and taxing these
> services, that is something completely different. It is more related
> with trade practices (and taxation). The existing model is way outdated
> and needs replacement. The same could be said for the copyright
> practices etc.
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Paul R Lehto, J.D.
P.O. Box 1
Ishpeming, MI 49849
lehto.paul at gmail.com
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