[LINK] TBL's Contract for a Better Web/Internet

Roger Clarke Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au
Tue Nov 6 08:45:34 AEDT 2018

[It's great that TBL's cashing in on his cred in an endeavour to get 
some action.  But Web 2.0, the digital surveillance economy, and the 
digital surveillance state, are all extremely difficult to combat, let 
alone reverse.  I suspect economic disruption and social revolution are 
more likely to get results.]

Web creator Berners-Lee launches contract for better internet
Principles defend free and open web.
Media Release Republished
Nov 6 2018

Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, has launched a campaign 
to persuade governments, companies and individuals to sign a "Contract 
for the Web" set of principles designed to defend a free and open internet.

Berners-Lee, who hatched the Web in 1989, said a sense of optimism about 
the internet had been damaged by abuses of personal data, online hate 
speech, political manipulation and the centralisation of power among a 
small group of major tech firms.

He said he wanted to rebuild trust in the web and increase internet 
access on fair and affordable terms by encouraging governments, 
companies and individuals to work together.

"The web is at a crucial point," Berners-Lee said in excerpts from his 
speech launching the project at the Web Summit conference in Lisbon on 
Monday. "We need a new Contract for the Web, with clear and tough 
responsibilities for those who have the power to make it better."

Berners-Lee said governments, companies and individual internet users 
had a role to play.

"Some policy things like net neutrality have to involve governments, 
some things clearly involve companies - big companies, small companies 
and start-ups," he said in an interview ahead of the launch.

"If you're an ISP (internet service provider) you (commit to) deliver a 
neutral internet. If you are a social networking company you make sure 
that (...) you allow people to control their data."

Individuals would pledge to "respect civil discourse and human dignity 
so that everyone feels safe and welcome online", according to one of the 
core principles.

However, it is not clear how such a principle could be enforced, given 
the inherent anonymity of the internet.

The contract's starting principles have already received the endorsement 
of more than 50 organisations including the French government, Internet 
Sans Frontieres and companies including Google and Facebook.

Berners-Lee said the full terms of the contract would be agreed in the 
coming months, with the objective to finalise it in May 2019 - the 50/50 
moment when more than half of the world's population will be online for 
the first time.

People will be able to get involved by using the hashtag #ForTheWeb, he 

Roger Clarke                            mailto:Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au
T: +61 2 6288 6916   http://www.xamax.com.au  http://www.rogerclarke.com

Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd      78 Sidaway St, Chapman ACT 2611 AUSTRALIA 

Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Law            University of N.S.W.
Visiting Professor in Computer Science    Australian National University

More information about the Link mailing list