Nostalgia just isn’t what it used to be

To add to the category “yesterday’s views of tomorrow” – this “vision” from 1969 is in some aspects coming scarily close to what we call the ‘internet’ now:

Contrast this (rather narrow) “shopping/house/kids/surveillance/car/bills&taxes” outlook on the essentials of life with this view on the “computer network called ‘internet'” from 1993

“The internet is

  • Liberty
  • Friends all over the world
  • Fun
  • Information
  • Anonymity
  • Part of our every-day life
  • and much, much more …”

Was this optimistic or realistic? I think the internet has, over time, lived up to and even went beyound most of the expectations, only that Liberty and Anonymity (which, according to some, can’t be separated) are increasingly under threat now, and I am not (only) thinking of the standard-run-of-the-mill lunatic dictators, blood-thirsty tyrants and opressive regimes here.

Seems it’s due time to remind the league of our scare-mongering “western” politicians (again) that human rights and civil liberties are simply non-negotiable.

Those who sacrifice freedom for safety deserve neither.” (Thomas Jefferson)

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  1. #1 by cistronic on 2011/09/17 - 10:28

    Some clarification found in http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Thomas_Jefferson in the section “misattributed” (thanks to Sven for hints):
    “A society that will trade a little liberty for a little order will lose both, and deserve neither.” This has actually become a common paraphrase of a statement that is believed to have originated with Benjamin Franklin: “Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

  2. #2 by cistronic on 2013/03/19 - 20:53

    New Steampunk Book from MAKE and O’Reilly: Vintage Tomorrows
    http://blog.makezine.com/2013/02/12/new-steampunk-book-from-make-and-oreilly-vintage-tomorrows/

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