The U.S. and the Shadow Internet

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

James Glanz, investigative reporter for The New York Times, and Clay Shirky, faculty member at the Interactive Telecommunications program at NYU and the author of Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age and Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations, discuss the shadow internet and the U.S. involvement in supporting more internet access around the world.


James Glanz and Clay Shirky

Comments [11]

Robert from NYC

Is the US government in favor of distributing this technology to groups such as the FARC ( in Colombia), as well? How about the 'Red Shirts' in Thailand, etc...?
Or is it to be used only, to destabilize foreign governments that don't tow the Party- line on the wonders of Capitalism?
The line that people in the US even, have complete access to free information is just an insidious hoax perpetrated by the prevalent corporate media.
Americans who are dissidents and independent thinkers, are as regularly monitored here, as did the Stasi in E.Germany.

Jun. 15 2011 11:11 AM
Jeff Pappas from Ct.

Your last caller should push to outlaw matches since some people are Arsonists.

Jun. 15 2011 10:46 AM
William from Queens

I would like to see our supposedly liberal politicians leverage this issue towards securing free speech and right to public assembly.

Jun. 15 2011 10:44 AM
Jerome Harris from Prospect Heights, Brooklyn

Given the potential of this technology to be used by people and organizations with nefarious intent (including anti-U.S. intent), I'm shocked that our government would try to implement this.

On the other hand, private groups hoping to support democracy (and to evade repression) will probably continue to develop this capability...of course, so will nefarious private groups.

It reminds me of the submarines that South American drug cartels have built to transport drugs. Tech giveth, tech taketh away...

Jun. 15 2011 10:43 AM
Bill Israel from Dix Hills, NY

The flip side of this is a scenario straight out of the movie "Seven Days in May" where the military seeks to overthrow the government and a key part of the plan is to seize the telecommunications networks to control the message.

A shadow internet can work both ways.

Jun. 15 2011 10:42 AM
Ben from Manhattan

Should we worry that such a shadow internet could be used by terrorists? If we are setting it up, would the CIA secretly monitor it to make sure it isn't? And if they so, how are we any better the the regimes that monitored the internet in the first place?

Jun. 15 2011 10:36 AM
Jacob Budin

Do Americans get to use the open Internet too? Or just the NSA-monitored one?

Jun. 15 2011 10:36 AM
Glenn from Park Slope

This is the same U.S. government that tried to shutter Wikileaks? The same U.S. government that has seized and shut down 200+ domains at the behest of the MPAA and entertainment industry? The same government whose NSA performs wholesale collection of internet traffic?

Jun. 15 2011 10:35 AM
David from West Hempstead

Telecom companies can't really even do business in the US if their phones aren't tappable, it should be pointed out.

Jun. 15 2011 10:32 AM
David from West Hempstead

PATRIOT Act still around?


Jun. 15 2011 10:30 AM

This is comical. Many, particularly in Europe, have raised the possibility of building a new net to circumvent growing US intrusiveness and American threats to implement a "kill switch."

Barack Obama is emerging as _more_ conservative than Bush on government transparency, treatment of whistleblowers, and internet accessibility. Obama has made overt references to his desiring the kill switch.

The US is part of the problem here.

Jun. 15 2011 10:14 AM

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