January 10, 2019

The Internet is a WMD (Weapon of Mass Delusion)

Some thoughts on the Internet as the root problem, based on this Washington Post Op-Ed.


When I was a kid, I remember reading about Robert Oppenheimer's work on the atomic bomb and his thought that scientists developing technologies that could be weaponized had some responsibility to counter its misuse. It was probably in the phase of reading bios.

If the Internet, the Web, social media, analytics and targeted advertising have been weaponized, turned into weapons of mass delusion, what are we doing to effectively counter this threat?

I see some focus on decentralization, but that doesn't seem to mitigate the problem. 
IETF, ISOC, ICANN, W3C, ACM, somewhere else? where?

 It seems like this isn't a problem that can be solved by fixing a handful of sites. Or applying sanctions to individuals and companies. how can we counter the susceptibility of mass communication systems to this kind of manipulation and the continuing escalating arms race of hacks and prevention hacks?

Pseudonymous postings seem to be essential, with an increasing sophistication of operational techniques.