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The web turns 30 today and here is what its inventor has to say

If we were to thank a person for all the internet that we are consuming these days, it has to be the inventor himself — Sir Tim Berners-Lee. What started as a small network for a selected establishment had grown on to revolutionize the way humans function.

Such has been the revolution, that the new billion dollar companies and billionaires of the world now hail from internet companies.

Commenting on the 30th anniversary of the internet, Sir Tim Berners-Lee has called for governments, companies and citizens to build a better web. He has also penned a special letter, certain notable excerpts from which are below.

The web has become a public square, a library, a doctor’s office, a shop, a school, a design studio, an office, a cinema, a bank, and so much more. Of course with every new feature, every new website, the divide between those who are online and those who are not increases, making it all the more imperative to make the web available for everyone.

says Lee in his open letter

The web inventor took notice of the online data breaches and scams, which have become a common these days. He goes on to say,

Against the backdrop of news stories about how the web is misused, it’s understandable that many people feel afraid and unsure if the web is really a force for good. But given how much the web has changed in the past 30 years, it would be defeatist and unimaginative to assume that the web as we know it can’t be changed for the better in the next 30. If we give up on building a better web now, then the web will not have failed us. We will have failed the web.

Lee also took a more lenient view towards blaming one particular Government or ‘social network’ for all breaches. While not direct, this could well be a point of solace for governments like China, who are at the center of the blame game when it comes to online scamming. At the same time, Facebook could also find some respite in the statement, considering it has been at the center of some of the biggest internet scandals of our times.

Sir Tim Berners has also stressed the need for governments to step up. He mentions that “Governments must translate laws and regulations for the digital age”. He also talks about how competition is important to make web a continually inventive place. He further adds,

They [governments] have a responsibility to protect people’s rights and freedoms online. We need open web champions within government — civil servants and elected officials who will take action when private sector interests threaten the public good and who will stand up to protect the open web.

Lee finally ends the letter with the note, that the “Web is for everyone” and collectively we hold the power to change it. “It won’t be easy. But if we dream a little and work a lot, we can get the web we want.”