Inventor of World Wide Web launches contract for better Internet

English scientist Tim Berners Lee from the Web Foundation addresses the opening ceremony of annual Web Summit technology conference in Lisb

Among the speakers expected on these themes figure Christopher Wylie, the whistleblower who has revealed in the beginning of the year the scandal of Cambridge Analytica, a company for which he worked as a research director, and who is accused of having used for political purposes the personal data of 50 million users of Facebook.

Tim Berners-Lee pointed out that in 1989, when he created the web he wanted it to be a free-access network that would serve mankind.

Tim Berners-Lee, the creator of the web, launches Contract for the Web that encourages companies to agree to let individuals own and control their data and importantly to allow mobility of data.

However, as the Web approaches nearly 50% of the world's population as users, Berners-Lee is not convinced that these principles are being upheld or that his original ideals for the Web are being protected.

He now called for a "contract" to make internet safe and accessible for everyone as Europe's largest tech event began in Lisbon, Portugal amid a backlash over its role in spreading "fake news".

"A lot of companies are finding it so exciting to be able to switch from trying to exploit you, trying to make you buy something you didn't want to buy, to actually switch back to the core business model of helping the user [and] generating value for the user", he said.

On Monday, during a talk at the Web Summit in Lisbon, Berners-Lee told governments, users, and companies to stand behind his "Contract for the Web".


I hope more people will join us to build the web we want. "Tim Berners-Lee has pinpointed one of the great human rights issues of our time and his proposal deserves worldwide support", he said. "Soon, a campaign is also going to be set up called "#ForTheWeb" to market the contract and turn it into a reality. The EU fined Google for $5.1 billion earlier this year.

Unfortunately, Berners-Lee reveals that it will be hard to see the contract's success. It's a delicate balancing act, but limiting some freedoms could end up creating a fairer, more open Web. "I was wrong", he said.

Jonathan Zittrain, a law professor at Harvard University and author of The Future of the Internet and How to Stop It said: "To me, the most important function of the contract is to remind people that the web we have isn't the only one possible".

The Contract for the Web isn't about (the concentration of power in big tech companies).

Roya Mahboob, founder of the Afghan Girls Robotics Club, said: "The contract for the web comes at a flawless time for women and girls around the world to speak truth to power, call out injustice and seize new opportunities".

The contract itself is broken into different commitments for companies, governments and citizens.

The distributed power of the web has shifted to lay in the hands of just a few, online abuse is on the rise, and the content we see is increasingly susceptible to manipulation.
The genie may seem to have come out of the bottle, but the internet has surprised us many times.

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