A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of guesting on Researchers' Radio Show with a fine panel of gentlemen, Joe Kiernan and Dave Stinnett along with another guest. One of these men brought up the subject of the Internet. I, like most Americans, was under the impression that no one owned the Internet and yet we all owned the Internet. It's available for all to post/share/tweet/comment/blog/advertise/etc. Of course, I have always suspected that any government had the ability to spy on our emails, postings, etc. But spying is just child's play. How naive I was. Upon further investigation, I found some very interesting facets of the 'who's who' of the world's superhighway.
So who is the man behind the curtain, or, in this case, the man above the cloud? Google would probably be my first guess, but the good people of Google are NOT alone in running the Internet. Here are the top six companies behind the Internet.
International Telecommunication Union or ITU (responsible for satellites, internationally funded, and considered like a court for those with Internet grievances) This organization is part of the United Nations.
Internet Architecture Board or IAB (keep the global systems up to task) They act as advisers to the Internet Society.
The Internet Society (enforce the integrity of the Internet, i.e. the .org websites are for noncommercial use) This has an Illuminati ring to it. They set up an Internet "Constitution in '97.
The Internet Engineering Task Force (routing, transport, and security issues)
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers or ICANN (keep addresses and links in their assigned spots) Again, a nonprofit segment of the Internet, but reportedly worth $100 million.
This is the organization that the U.S. just gave up controlling. It is based in Los Angeles and has been part of the U.S.'s oversight for over a decade, but will be located elsewhere by 2015. Some believe the E.U., China, or Russia. Republicans blast the Obama Administration for giving up control, fearing this could be the end of free speech.
Internet Service Providers or ISPs-These are the companies we are all the most familiar with-Comcast, ATT, Verizon, etc. Let's not forget about allegations of the government spying on us via Verizon a few years back.
Other Internet Powerhouses
Google-Behind 25% of all Internet traffic and used by 60% of all online devices daily.
Amazon- Their Amazon Web Service division is bigger than their retail end of the corporation. Some of their contracts include the CIA and Netflix.
Twitter- Not on this list below, but a growing Internet presence, especially since pictures are now easily attached. Twitter has surpassed Facebook in popularity by teens.
Is free speech at risk? Are secret societies involved? Is the Internet really an example of free speech? Leave a comment and tell me what you think.