Further Thoughts about Netizens

[Note: All of the gopher.cic.net links have expired. Where possible they have been replaced with other links.]

Community Networks allow citizens of a community to connect to the global computer communications network. This enables community members to communicate with others in their community and with the world. In addition, community networks often facilitate communications and distribution of information between citizens about their local and national governments. In democratic countries, this might facilitate a greater role for citizens in the governmental process. Community network access should be available for those in the public sector who are acting as representitives of themselves and their ideas. Community network access should only be available for those of the private sector who are contributing to the education or research of the whole network. Those in the private sector who are only interested in advancing their own profits should gain access to the Network via other avenues.

Netizens are Net Citizens who utilize the Net from their home, workplace, school, library, etc. These people are among those who populate the Net, and make it a resource of human beings. These netizens participate to help make the Net both an intellectual and a social resource.

The concept of community networking would enable people from around the world to connect to the Net, and in the process connect to other citizens from around the world. This in turn would help further the growth of the Net by connecting a diversity of people who have various opinions, specialties and interests. This worldwide connection of people and other information resources of different sorts will help the world move forward in solving different societal problems.

Paper commenting on Netizens and the diversity of uses people have found for the Net and how it was affected their lives: "The Net and the Netizens: The Impact the Net has on People's Lives" by Michael Hauben available via WWW in USA I,

Vision Behind the Concept of Global Community Networking

A Net which will grow to encompass all possible resources. In order to facilitate the free flow of information sharing.

Netizen's community suggests that we use the current state (circa 1994) of the Internet/NSFnet/Usenet/etc as a model for the upcoming NII. In order to do this, it is necessary to be aware of the history of the Net. Various texts for this exist:

  • NSFNET Acceptable Use Policy
  • - Helpful regulation which helps define the NSFnet (backbone of USA Internet) to be for sharing via an educational orientation (as opposed to profit making orientation). This regulation has helped the Net to grow.

    The Netizens and the Wonderful World of the Net: An Anthology of Articles on the History and Impact of the Net

  • Try one of these first, Netizen Netbook Page, Latest Edited Version
  • WWW Site: http://www.columbia.edu/~hauben/netbook/contents.html

    Chapters of particular historical interest

  • Use this link - chapters at Columbia
  • Chapter 3 - History of Usenet
  • Chapter 7 - ARPA History
  • Chapter 8 - ARPA History
  • Chapter 9 - Unix History
  • Chapter16 - Historical Connection to the Printing Press

    - An Anthology of historical perspective and social context needed to understand the advance represented by the global telecommunications network. This net-book is for those who want to contribute to the care and nurture of the Net.

    The Origins of RFCs by Stephen D. Crocker

  • RFC 1000 - RFC 1000 the full text, INDEX of rfcs included (307k)
  • History of the Internet

    Netnews (usenet) Newsgroups of Interest ( may have only old posts by now)

    The culture(s) of the Internet.
    The USENET community.
    The future technology of network news systems.
    Discussion about what constitutes "net abuse"
    Discusion about the mass media's coverage of the Internet.
    The Internet Encyclopedia.
    Teaching and learning in the Usenet University.
    Discussion of issues involving grassroots achivements and labor issues for those who love computers.
    Discussions of USENET itself.
    Policy issues of USENET.
    The impact of technology on society (Moderated).
    The Computer Underground Digest (Moderated).
    Computer technology in developing countries.
    Computer folklore & culture, past & present (Moderated)
    Stories & anecdotes about computers. historical disc.
    Events in technology affecting future computing.
    Effects of technology on privacy (Moderated).
    Discusion about the present and future of the "data highway"

    Non-electronic Reference Sources

    Bellovin, Steve M. and Mark Horton, "USENET - A Distributed Decentralized News System," an unpublished manuscript, 1985.

    Heart, F., A. McKenzie, J. McQuillan, and D. Walden, Arpanet Completion Report, Washington, 1978.

    Woodbury, Gregory G. _Net Cultural Assumptions_

    Vision Texts

    The Editors Scientific American. _Information_ W. H. Freeman Comp. San Francisco 1966 (In particular the articles "Time Sharing on Computers" Fano and Corbato, and "Information" McCathy)

    Kenemy, John. _Man and the Computer_. Charles Scribner's Sons NY, 1972

    Licklider, J.C.R and Albert Vezza, "Applications of Information Systems", Proceedings of the IEEE, Nov 1978

    Licklider, J.C.R. and Robert Taylor, "The Computer as a Communication Device" from "In Memoriam: J.C.R. Licklider 1915-1990," Aug. 7, 1990, p. 40; reprinted by permission from Digital Research Center; originally published as "The Computer as a Communication Device," in "Science and Technology", April, 1968, pg. 40

    Hauben, Michael, "The Social Forces Behind the Development of Usenet News.", _The Netizens and the Wonderful World of the Net_, unpublished off-line.

    Antonoff, Michael, "Fighting City Hall at 2400 Baud", Personal Computing, October 1989, (Special Issue "Computing in America IV"), pg. 170-172

    Michael Hauben / hauben@columbia.edu

    Links updated 1/16/2010 by Jay Hauben