I think it's about time they do that. My AOL coasters ain't in any shape anymore to be presentable, I need replacements!
And why would I want to verify my identity? Last time I checked I was pretty sure that I was myself, no need to verify anything.
Odd. What you describe sounds like my early adoption of internet usage. Everyone made fun of me using that slowpoke, expensive pastime that could never compete with "normal" computer use, since you could barely transfer text sensibly when GUIs already ruled the computer world and 3D graphics were approaching the gaming world. And here I was, that nerdy little idiot, watching text trickle down my phone line and being happy about communicating with someone via text when I could simply have called him (and considering the amount of time and effort it took it would probably have been cheaper, too)...
How this information could be useful? Just imagine you could have predicted any of the youth trends of the past. Pick any one. Still no idea how you could profit from that in some way?
You are aware that the basic idea behind creating such a social network is harvesting personal information about the users and how they interact with each other, yes? Then who in their sane mind would WANT to create an API to decentralize that?
And I guess you overestimate their attention span. FB will be "lame" sooner or later. Give it 2-5 years and everyone will be jumping on that next best thing.
So whatever "standard" the majority sets will be "good", and to hell with you if you don't agree with groupthink? Am I really the only one who thinks that this might be a dangerously slippery slope in a world where every country is basically dependent on the others?
"Interesting that you think $whistleblower is a hero, we think he's a traitor. And look, there our friends do think so, too, or else they're not our friends anymore (insert glare towards smaller countries cowering in the corner and nodding quickly here). So you want to be our friend, too, or do you want us to kick you out of "our" internet?"
And it won't be "the evil US" who do it because it's all decentralized and everyone agreed that it's a fine idea... because everyone shits their pants 'cause they don't want to be left out in the rain.
You repost by posting again. You are allowed to do this.
My point, which appears to have flown above you like an exploding Hindenberg showering corposes all over (sorry, too soon?) is that if the entire world started focussing on a different terrorist target, terrorists would be unlikely to immediately think "Let's kill people in NYC" as their first thought.
And let's be honest, nobody would miss Tallahassee. Not even those of us in Florida. Rick Scott's an asshole.
Also Texas, while (obviously) having a lower population density, probably has more people in it than Manhatten. So diverting terrorists there would both make it more difficult for them (more work per person killed) and would ensure that if they did they do the world a few favors by getting rid of the largest number of loudmouthed jerks possible.
Look people. Can we knock it off with the "Terrorists attacking New York City" scenarios? If we're going to protect NYC in the long term, we need to start playing up the relative importance of cities we actually wouldn't mind being attacked.
Can you repost your scenario as an attack on Tallahassee, or Phoenix, or some city in Texas or something?
NYC is awesome. Sure, the inhabitants get a little arrogant from time to time, but you kinda understand their point. We need to divert the terrorists to somewhere else, somewhere where the country would benefit from a terrorist attack.
FWIW, it doesn't matter if Google buys a baby mulching building (all running OpenBSD, natch'...), starts selling your information to advertisers (I mean really, not selling services to advertisers that work more effectively because Google has information about you, I mean actually selling your name, address, and fetishes to anyone who wants to advertise with them), arranges a Presidential assassination, blows up the Empire State Building, and worst of all, builds a private monorail to ferry employees between San Francisco and its offices.
Even if Google does all of those things, Android is still open.
This story is not about whether Android is open. It's about whether Google is putting pressure on its partners to ensure they stick with Google's vision about Android when distributing it, and likewise whether Microsoft are doing what they've done since the dawn of time.
Is Google right to this? Probably not. That said, the backlash seems far greater than it ought to be, probably because of a combination of anti-Google shill campaigns of late, because people expect Google to be better than this (nobody expects this of Microsoft which is why it's not a shock), and because several other things they've done lately with Android, such as pushing GMS, which were actually aimed at ending criticisms of Android for being "Fragmented" have been closed and against the entire perceived ethos of Android.
Also their search engine is worse than BIng these days, and that's not because Bing is any good.
Android? It's still open. Ask Amazon. Ask CyanogenMod and the non-commercial phone modding community. Google can't, and probably won't try to, close it. They will continue to try to control it, understandably, but the cat is out of the bag.
That's maybe the biggest question here. The US hands over control of the internet. Ok. Fine. Sounds good on paper. But who gets control? And please don't say "nobody". Like it or not, certain things need to be policied by some entity. The two things that immediately spring into the mind are domain name control and IP address assignation. Pretty much anything where "globally unique" is a key feature will have to have some kind of controlling entity.
And the very LAST thing I could possibly see as beneficial is if that control was handed to certain entities that would all too eagerly take control of it. Namely corporations with an interest in controlling those resources. Can you imagine what it would be like if a for-profit organization takes over certain aspects of the net? Especially the "globally unique" ones? If you thought domain name turf wars have been problematic, you ain't seen nothing yet.
I'm certainly not someone who thinks it's a perfect solution to hand the control of an important resource to a single country. Far from it. If anything, handing it to the EU sounds sensible, considering how much infighting is going on there and how much bickering, the chance that they could use it against the rest of the world is sufficiently small. Ok, I'm kidding. But I guess it is easy to understand how it's hard to find a good governing body for something like this. Who should take over?
The UN? Please. Take a look at how much success they had with world peace and world hunger and ponder how much more important those two things are compared to the internet. Then consider how much success they'd have policying and governing the internet.
A multi-national consortium? Where's the difference to the UN?
The EU? As I said, considering how much in-fighting and bickering is going on there, it probably carries the lowest risk of anything bad happening. But also the lowest chance of ANYTHING happening when something needs to be done. Plus the highest chance that it will eventually be sold off to the highest bidding corporation.
Decentralize it? Good idea on paper, that was essentially the basic idea behind the internet, but it has deviated from that a long while ago. It's very unlikely that this can still fly. Most likely we'll be running into severe problems before long. Especially when certain countries decide it's a good idea to do a few things differently so they can more easily avoid doubleplusungood ideas to reach the plebs.
Who should take control? I can't really think of many good alternatives, but I'm eager to hear suggestions.