Another issue when we deal with the Internet is of course money. It is related both directly to business, and to the business world’s control over and impact on the flow of information. I have no real overview, I am only a too eager user of the Internet, but being one I can notice a few things.
Some discussions have been going on for quite a while, about Facebook as part of the media world, for instance.
Idealism was there from the start. I don’t know all the issues connected to it, but international contact and the sharing and spreading of valuable thoughts and other interesting things are obviously positive sides of the Internet.
The sharing of music has given too many of us a habit of not paying for music, which is, too put it mildly, a problem for musicians and composers.
The Internet is used by companies not only to promote themselves on their own websites, but to survey existing and potential customers’ browsing habits in many ways – that means us – and to create tailormade marketing campaigns from the results of the surveys, directly into your Mac. Time is ripe for legislation, and it will be interesting to see whether the new EU rules will actually change things or not.
This is another example on the fact that the new technology gives new possibilities for choice – and I believe we must sometimes choose not to use certain opportunities, or even forbid things, if we are going to live a fairly normal life, whatever that is. We have to discuss where to limit the Internet and where not.
Thinking about ads directed towards children, we have all taken cover somewhere, I believe? Ads pop up constantly on the screens of my kids, and even if we can find reasons to reconsider staunch anti-commercial views from before the Internet if we had them, there is still a need to go through the old arguments too, and see where we land in this new landscape. Both blurring the lines between information and commercials and a generally suspicious attitude towards business are problematic positions or actions. Old arguments against commercial abuse, from before the Internet, could still be relevant, because of the Internet as it is today.
I am anyway tired of the bias towards marketing and revenue these days, on the cost of focus on actual production. As a customer I am after all more interested in products than commercials or the commercial success of one or another product or business.
You could argue that the Internet contributes to this tendency, but others can tell whether it is actually an important reason for business life to have had this bias for some years now.