Future of Networks and Internet. Part V. Connecting ScenarioTuesday, April 7th, 2009 by Roberto Saracco
The idea of a “Connecting World” is that the Society is organized around the assumption that everything is connected and everything happens via this connecting fabric. The Connecting Fabric is “god” and government makes sure it controls it since it is the fabric of society. The public sector is empowering citizens, enables innovation and foster production through collaboration. All positive aims that anyhow have the drawback of control written everywhere.
Open standards, infrastructures and technologies are not just taken for granted, they are enforced. The suspicion of governments on markets, increased by the financial crises of the 2009, leads to strict control and a connecting world provides the ideal tool to exercise such control.
The opportunities in a Connecting scenario is that people organize themselves via networks, there is online debates about public values and transparencies and knowledge sharing.
The threats are the omnipresence of government (controlling the flow of information by controlling the pipes) and the question is who controls the government. There may be unilateral thinking and little awareness of dangers, complexity and disruptions.
Since regulation rules, individual initiatives is stymied, innovation slows down. Services are mostly top down in design and are imposed rather than coming to success in a bottom up fashion, they spread through processes rather than through viral dissemination.
Internet has lost its generative character and has become increasingly closed. Users have lost their power in directing evolution. Competition tends to be local since high protectionism has created high barriers of entry and diminished chances for outside competition.
Everything seems to work better and more efficiently but this is at the expense of continuous innovation and flexibility.