When I think about the Internet, what first comes into my mind is either Google, or Social media, like Facebook, Twitter or video sharing websites like YouTube. All user – related platforms.
Yet, as we all know, this was not always the case. The precursor of the modern day Internet, called ARPANET, was created in 1969 by the United States Department of Defense (DoD). That, is what really surprised me about the History of the Internet. The fact that it was born from a governmental agency.
When I first learned that, I was baffled. We all consider the Internet our thing now. We have our private chats on Whatsapp, our public chats with Facebook groups, communities in Forums (although they’re out fashion), our online shops and so on.
Learning about the history of the Internet made me realise how much the relationship between governments and the network itself has changed dramatically. The government created it, but then it became so popular, because of its’ almost infinite possibilities, that we now consider any military involvement an invasion of our space.
The surveillance scandal of the NSA was seen by most of the population as an invasion of our privacy. We all felt violated by the thought of some random employee reading our e-mails or text messages.
In light of this, I find it interesting that now we all see the government as a dark body that interferes with our personal space, whereas they are the ones who actually started the whole thing.