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The Internet Health Report: Who controls the Internet? PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Mozilla   
Wednesday, 22 March 2017 07:56

"52% of all websites are in English, but only 25% of the world understands English."-Mozilla
Exclusive: "The Internet and the World Wide Web remain the biggest decentralized communication system humanity has ever seen. This was very much a part of the design: the inventors of the Web wished for all people to be able to create and access information. ...The Web is thriving beyond the “walled gardens” of social media. Over 1 billion websites exist as a result of the decentralized domain name system (DNS) that catalogues all Web addresses."

Source: Desktop Search Engine Market Share, NETMARKETSHARE, 2016, Mobile/Tablet Search Engine Market Share, NETMARKETSHARE, 2016

"But the benefits of a decentralized Internet are eroding. When we concentrate our online activity on just a few social networks and messaging apps – as billions of us do – it narrows our experience of the Web to one where we are pointed only at content that appeals to our likes in search results and social media streams. Here, we are consumers rather than creators.


The Internet remains decentralized, but the things we do on it every day are controlled by just a handful of global technology giants. These companies are starting to look more and more like monopolies of the past. Given the importance of the Internet in our lives, this is not healthy.

Healthy

The Web is thriving beyond the “walled gardens” of social media. Over 1 billion websites exist as a result of the decentralized domain name system (DNS) that catalogues all Web addresses.

Technologically, a new generation of software developers are dreaming up applications that build and reward decentralization. An example is peer-to-peer computer networks that employ “blockchains” –– the stuff that powers the cryptocurrency Bitcoin – for transactions of money, goods and services. And maybe someday, an Internet that doesn’t require Web servers.

Unhealthy

A small handful of companies – including Facebook, Google, Apple, Tencent, AliBaba and Amazon – dominate the global Internet sector. While these companies provide hugely valuable  services to billions of people, they are also consolidating control over human communication and wealth at a level never before seen in history.

Think of smartphones, where just two companies, Google (Android) and Apple (iOS), dominate the market. Everything from the phone’s operating system, to what applications can be purchased in their app stores, are ultimately controlled by these two companies. And speaking of apps – the global app economy is centered in just a few high-income countries (95% of the value is from just 10 countries) with emerging economies accounting for only 1% of app value."

"The Internet is an ecosystem. A living entity that billions of people depend on for knowledge, livelihood, self-expression, love…. The health of this system relies on – and influences – everyone it touches. Signs of poor health in any part impacts the whole. We’re all connected.

How healthy is our Internet? How might we understand and diagnose it? We believe this is a timely and necessary conversation, and we hope you’ll join in." -Mozilla

About Mozilla

Mozilla’s mission is to ensure the Internet is a global public resource, open and accessible to all. We’re a global community of technologists, thinkers and builders working together to keep the Internet alive and accessible, so people worldwide can be informed contributors and creators of the Web.

Source: https://internethealthreport.org/v01/decentralization/

 

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