Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Web Freedom Faces Greatest Threat Ever, Warns Google’s Sergey Brin

The Guardian: Google co-founder Sergey Brin believes Internet freedom is under attack. “[There are] very powerful forces that have lined up against the open internet on all sides and around the world,” he warned. “I am more worried than I have been in the past,” he added. “It’s scary.”

Specifically, Brins sees two types of threats to the Web. The first comes from “walled gardens” set up by companies like Apple and Facebook. “You have to play by their rules, which are really restrictive,” he said. “The kind of environment that we developed Google in, the reason that we were able to develop a search engine, is the Web was so open. Once you get too many rules, that will stifle innovation.”

Secondly, Brin worries about censorship efforts in countries like China, Saudi Arabia and Iran. While he used to believe that a government couldn’t effectively censor the Web for long, he has changed his mind. “I thought there was no way to put the genie back in the bottle, but now it seems in certain areas the genie has been put back in the bottle,” he said.

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