Advertisement

Coercive Cyberspaces and Governing Internet Futures

  • Rex Troumbley
Part of the Public Administration and Information Technology book series (PAIT, volume 17)

Abstract

This chapter describes how earlier images of cyberspace shaped the Internet’s development and discourses about it, especially the “cyberpunk” science fiction genre and images which viewed Internet freedom as a technologized neoliberal marketplace of ideas, before considering how economics, security, and environmental change are driving Internet futures. Using Google as a case study, the chapter finds that Internet companies shape what Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein call “choice architecture” of online services to push the Internet towards corporate futures and encourage users to behave as predictable consumers. Additionally, the chapter argues that corporate futures constitute a monopolization of creativity evidenced by the recent creation of an alternative system of Internet governance based upon “multistakeholder” principles. The chapter ends by presenting three alternative scenarios for Internet futures based upon these drivers and trends; one in which the primacy of commercial interests construct the Internet as a centralized collection of services, one in which cybersecurity interests drive the Internet towards an aggressively securitized and surveilled system, and one in which environmental change causes the Internet to be regulated as a scarce resource.

Keywords

Digital politics Internet freedom Corporate futures Internet governance 

References

  1. Alves S (2014) The Internet Balkanization fragmentation. http://www.diplomacy.edu/blog/internet-balkanization-fragmentation
  2. Barlow J (1996) A declaration of the independence of cyberspace. https://projects.eff.org/~barlow/Declaration-Final.html
  3. Borowitz A (n.d.) China censors Google searches: ‘Human rights’ becomes ‘Hunan rice.’ http://www.smirkingchimp.com/thread/andy_borowitz/27540/china_censors_google_searches_human_rights_becomes_hunan_rice
  4. Brandon J (2013) Moving services to the cloud may reduce energy use up to 87%. http://www.businesscloudnews.com/2013/06/12/moving-services-to-the-cloud-may-reduce-energy-use-up-to-87/
  5. Bumiller E, Shanker T (2012) Panetta warns of dire threat of cyberattack on U.S. The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/12/world/panetta-warns-of-dire-threat-of-cyberattack.html
  6. Cerf VG, Ryan PS, Senges M (2013) Internet governance is our shared responsibility (SSRN Scholarly Paper No. ID 2309772). Social Science Research Network, Rochester, NY. http://papers.ssrn.com/abstract=2309772
  7. Chun WHK (2008) Control and freedom: power and paranoia in the age of fiber optics. The MIT Press, Cambridge, MAGoogle Scholar
  8. Connolly WE (2002) Neuropolitics: thinking, culture, speed, 1st edn. University of Minnesota Press, MinneapolisGoogle Scholar
  9. Connolly WE (2013) The fragility of things: self-organizing processes, neoliberal fantasies, and democratic activism. Duke University Press Books, Durham, NCCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Deibert RJ (2014) Black code: inside the battle for cyberspace. McClelland & Stewart, Plattsburgh, NYGoogle Scholar
  11. Deleuze G (1992) Postscript on the societies of control. October 59:3–7Google Scholar
  12. Engel R, Windrem R (2013) CIA didn’t always know who it was killing in drone strikes, classified documents show. http://investigations.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/06/05/18781930-cia-didnt-always-know-who-it-was-killing-in-drone-strikes-classified-documents-show
  13. Foley DK (2003) Unholy trinity: labor, capital and land in the new economy. Routledge, Oxford, UKCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Fuller M, Goffey A (2012) Evil media. MIT Press, Cambridge, MAGoogle Scholar
  15. Galloway AR (2012) The interface effect, 1st edn. Polity Press, Cambridge, UKGoogle Scholar
  16. Galloway AR (2014) Laruelle: against the digital. University of Minnesota Press, MinneapolisCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Gibson W (1986) Neuromancer, 1st edn. Ace, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  18. Glanz J (2012) Data centers waste vast amounts of energy, belying industry image. The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/23/technology/data-centers-waste-vast-amounts-of-energy-belying-industry-image.html
  19. Google (n.d.-a) About Google Scholar. http://scholar.google.com/intl/en-US/scholar/about.html
  20. Google (n.d.-b) Our products and services. http://www.google.com/about/company/products/
  21. Google (n.d.-d) Removing content from Google. https://support.google.com/legal/troubleshooter/1114905?hl=en
  22. Google Testing Blog (2007) Introducing ‘Testing on the Toilet.’ http://googletesting.blogspot.com/2007/01/introducing-testing-on-toilet.html
  23. ICANN Panel on Global Internet Cooperation and Governance Mechanisms (2014) Towards a collaborative, decentralized Internet governance ecosystem. Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. https://www.icann.org/en/system/files/files/collaborative-decentralized-ig-ecosystem-21may14-en.pdf
  24. Hayek FA (2007) The road to serfdom: text and documents—the definitive edition. (Caldwell B, ed.), 1st edn. University of Chicago Press, ChicagoCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. International Telecommunication Union (2011) ICT facts and figures. http://www.itu.int/ITU-D/ict/facts/2011/
  26. Jacobellis v. Ohio, 378 US 184 (Supreme Court 1964)Google Scholar
  27. Kendrick WM (1996) The secret museum: pornography in modern culture. University of California Press, Berkeley, CAGoogle Scholar
  28. Kuang C (2012) In the cafeteria, Google gets healthy., http://www.fastcompany.com/1822516/cafeteria-google-gets-healthy
  29. Latour B (2013) An inquiry into modes of existence: an anthropology of the moderns (Porter C, Trans.). Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MAGoogle Scholar
  30. Lessig L (2006) Code: and other laws of cyberspace, version 2.0. Basic Books, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  31. MacKinnon R (2013) Consent of the networked: the worldwide struggle for Internet freedom (First Trade Paper Edition). Basic Books, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  32. Morozov E (2013) To save everything, click here: the folly of technological solutionism. PublicAffairs, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  33. Newman J (2011) 6 things you’d never guess about Google’s energy use. Time. http://techland.time.com/2011/09/09/6-things-youd-never-guess-about-googles-energy-use/
  34. Nietzsche FW (2000) Basic writings of Nietzsche (Modern Library Ed.). Modern Library, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  35. Office of Public Affairs (2014) NTIA announces intent to transition key Internet domain name functions. http://www.ntia.doc.gov/press-release/2014/ntia-announces-intent-transition-key-internet-domain-name-functions
  36. Ofosu EA (2011) Sustainable irrigation development in the White Volta sub-basin: UNESCO-IHE PhD Thesis. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FLCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Packowski J (2009) Google and the evolution of search I: human evaluators. AllThingsD. http://allthingsd.com/20090603/google-and-the-evolution-of-search-scott-huffman/
  38. Renzenbrink T (2014) How much electricity does the Internet Use?., http://www.techthefuture.com/technology/how-much-electricity-does-the-internet-use/
  39. Roth v. United States, 354 US 476 (Supreme Court 1957)Google Scholar
  40. Schmidt E, Cohen J (2013) The new digital age: reshaping the future of people, nations and business. Vintage, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  41. Schwartz A (2010) How much energy does a tweet consume?., http://www.fastcompany.com/1620676/how-much-energy-does-tweet-consume
  42. Sebastian A (2012) Just how big are porn sites?., http://www.extremetech.com/computing/123929-just-how-big-are-porn-sites
  43. Seeley TD (2010) Honeybee democracy. Princeton University Press, PrincetonGoogle Scholar
  44. Spivak GC (1988) Can the subaltern speak? In: Nelson C, Grossberg L (eds) Marxism and the interpretation of culture. University of Illinois Press, Urbana, pp 271–313Google Scholar
  45. Stephenson N (2000) Snow crash. Spectra, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  46. Thaler RH, Sunstein CR (2008) Nudge: improving decisions about health, wealth, and happiness. Yale University Press, New Haven, CTGoogle Scholar
  47. Vaidhyanathan S (2011) The Googlization of everything, 1st edn. University of California Press, OaklandGoogle Scholar
  48. Wiener N (1965) Cybernetics: or, control and communication in the animal and the machine. M.I.T. Press, Cambridge, MAGoogle Scholar
  49. Wiener N (1988) The human use of human beings: Cybernetics and society. Da Capo, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  50. Williams R (2005) Politics and self in the age of digital re(pro)ducibility., http://www.uta.edu/huma/agger/fastcapitalism/1_1/williams.html
  51. Zittrain J (2008) The future of the Internet—and how to stop it. Yale University Press, New Haven, CTGoogle Scholar
  52. Zuckerman E (2013) Rewire: digital cosmopolitans in the age of connection. W. W. Norton & Company, New YorkGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Humanities Research Center—MS-620Rice UniversityHoustonUSA

Personalised recommendations