Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the world-wide web, has officially launched a plan to fix the web. Ironically backed by usual suspects like Google and Facebook, the key aspect to the solution is a Contract for the Web, a set of principles designed to fix the internet and prevent us from sliding into a digital dystopia.
Berners-Lee told the Guardian “I think people’s fear of bad things happening on the internet is becoming, justifiably, greater and greater. If we leave the web as it is, there’s a very large number of things that will go wrong. We could end up with a digital dystopia if we don’t turn things around. It’s not that we need a 10-year plan for the web, we need to turn the web around now.”
The contract, which has been worked on by 80 organisations for more than a year, outlines nine central principles to safeguard the web – three each for governments, companies and individuals. The contract lists nine core principles for governments, companies, and individuals to adhere to, including responsibilities to provide affordable, reliable internet access and to respect civil discourse and human dignity. At launch, the initiative has received the backing of over 150 organizations, including tech companies such as Microsoft, Google, DuckDuckGo, and Facebook, and nonprofit groups such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation. While its interesting slash ironic that its backed by Google and Facebook, Amazon and Twitter are absent from the list of companies which have signed up.