Just because SXSW is over doesn’t mean that co-founder of Twitter, Evan Williams’ comments don’t deserve a little more debate. You probably heard by now that there was a mass exodus during his keynote speech (and if not why didn’t you read that in my SXSWi postings, get on it.)
Ev said re: firewalls & censorship “The Internet is a tidal wave” …basically unstoppable despite government’s like China and Turkey telling Google where to go. Ev you are thinking like a Westerner. Culturally there are boundaries. Don’t discount governments in other countries not putting their hand into the net and stopping it for the average citizen.
In China there is an infinite number of dialects spoken and many people live in the countryside so access to the net seems like a joke in comparison to their daily struggles. Africa is doing a lot with wireless access but just because of a small success in one area that doesn’t mean that entire continent will benefit from a ‘How To Kill A Lion’ app especially if that lion is about to tear you up.
A few days ago I watched this Aussie report on Google:
The information we give up (knowingly or unknowingly) on the net every day is collected for the all great Algorithm to get better. Beneficial or not it happens and sometimes it can be a bit creepy. Foursquare freaks me out a little bit because when the ‘nearby comments’ bring to life Jay-Z’s song “in Brooklyn we go hard.” These are my neighbours? Ignorance can be bliss.
Australia now wants the harshest filtering for search engines in a Westernized country. So is the Internet an unstoppable tidal wave? Certainly not everywhere. There is such a flood of content out there but as the net grows older, just like a human over 30 it has to get a little more responsible and come to grips that it’s no longer the wild, wild west. There are millions of intelligent consumers in the world who understand the power of the medium who understand what is going on and will not be fooled by engineers talking down to them using catch phrases to confuse them.