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Governments and corporations are eager to control the Net. Surveillance of netizens is commonplace whether in democracies or in totalitarian regimes. What does the loss of Internet freedom mean? Down To Earth finds out.



As the Internet becomes the public square and the marketplace of our world, it is increasingly becoming a contested terrain. Its potential for diffusing knowledge and subverting the traditional channels of information is tremendous. So it is not surprising that governments, corporations and even seemingly innocuous social networking sites all want to control and influence the way the Internet operates. It’s easy to see why. Close to a third of humanity is linked to this system—and the dramatic growth in Internet usage over the past decade is set to explode in coming years. So is its commercial promise.