Illustration of Derek Powazek by Adam Ellis

On The Network Manifesto

I’m thinking about starting a podcast or something called “On The Network” to counter all the idiocy I hear in traditional media about the internet. If I did, here’s the beta version of the 10 principles that would guide it.

  1. The internet is neutral. It is neither good nor bad. People have motivations, the internet does not.
  2. We change the internet more than it changes us. Human motivations may change, but they change very slowly.
  3. People are messy. The technology we invent is messy, too. Deal with it.
  4. The internet is not in opposition to traditional media, it’s just more media. All media works better when it works together.
  5. All reality is virtual. Thought is and has always been virtual. The internet enables us to think together.
  6. Technology is not the opposite of humanity. Inventing and using technology is one of the defining characteristics of being human.
  7. The internet can be used for good or bad, but it is a net positive force in the world, because it connects us to each other.
  8. More information is better than less. Freedom to connect to others is a fundamental human right.
  9. Access to the internet broadens horizons. Hearing other people’s stories makes us more empathetic, smarter.
  10. People make the internet what it is. If you don’t like it, make it better.

Interested in this? Follow onthenetwork on Twitter. If it gets 1,000 followers, I’ll take the next step (whatever that is).

ps – The 11th principle is that it’s “internet” not “Internet”. We capitalize technology when it’s new and scary. It’s time to decapitalize it, just like radio, newspaper, and television.

UPDATE: We hit 1,000 followers in 12 hours. So here’s the next step: There’ll be more. Stay tuned.

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Hi, I’m Derek. I used to make websites. Now I grow flowers and know things. I’m mostly harmless. More.