posted on Sep, 30 2004 @ 11:20 AM
This is a rumor that's been around forever. First it was worms, then an e-mail tax, then spam on Usenet that would make it unusable. Next came
Canter and Seigle and the introduction of mass-mailing software. Then porn on the world wide web, then online gambling, then piracy.
The Internet, as we currently know it, will almost certainly change within our lifetimes. It will not, however, "die." For it to die, in the way
that you fear, it would be necessary to eliminate the knowledge of internetworking protocols among the world's IT enthusiasts.
If the US Government "killed" the Internet tomorrow, local dialup BBSes would begin to re-emerge within a few days. Old institutions like Fidonet
would begin to reappear within a few weeks. More permanant connections over dedicated T-1 lines (now much cheaper than at any time in the past) would
show up in the months following the "murder of the Internet." These media of communication would not have to use the same protocols that
"Internet2" does, there are enough very knowledgeable amateurs out there that new protocols, consistant with the original aim of the [academic]
Internet could be developed. This new network would certainly be less accessible to the standard citizen, but that would change over time. Within 10
years, barring legal steps that would disallow internetworking protocols not explicitly authorized by the .gov, a usable alternative to Internet2
would be around and ready to use by the general public.
If you are honestly worried about the "death" of the Internet, I suggest that you make yourselves familiar with the technology behind it, as well as
the older technology that it replaced, in case that eventuality comes to pass.