The inventor of the Internet Sir Tim John Berners-Lee has gone on record as saying that he believes the Internet is now a fundamental human right. “Access to the Web is now a human right,” said Berners-Lee, “It’s possible to live without the Web. It’s not possible to live without water. But if you’ve got water, then the difference between somebody who is connected to the Web and is part of the information society, and someone who (is not) is growing bigger and bigger.”

Personally I find Sir Tim’s comments a little bit ridiculous. In my view Internet access should possibly be a legal right but not a human right. People can and did survive perfectly fine without the Internet for most of humanities 2 million years on Planet Earth. However we never faired quite so well without food, water and shelter, which last time I checked are all existing human rights. Many developing countries are still largely without consistent widespread Internet Access. Making it a basic human right would mean we would have to allow prison inmates access also, the absurdity of this concept beggars belief more so because it came from the man who invented the Web itself. I’m reminded of the rather humorous but slightly disturbing one-liner that the antogonist of the film “Blitz” made after being arrested for murdering several police officers – “I want a lawyer, I want a sandwich, and I want to update my Facebook status.”

Making the Internet a human right could open up a minefield of moral and ethical questions surrounding users who have already been denied Web access due to criminal activity. My question to you all today is do you agree with Berners-Lee? Should the Internet really be a fundamental human right?


6 thoughts on “Inventor of the World Wide Web says Internet Access is a Human Right

  1. I believe that the internet is too important not to be considered a right but I believe that it is a legal one. In that if a government can provide and a person is a productive member of society than they should be given internet access of a certain speed. However those who use the internet for nefarious purposes should be punished as a particular government sees fit. I do not agree with Berners-Lee that the internet should be a human right I believe that it is a leal right.

  2. That fun, this of it this way if it was a human right than if you got stop paying for it, and say if your ever cut off that they are taking away your human rights.

    What a dope,

  3. Well think of it this way Dave, your generation is a lot different from mine. Tough I myself use the internet for information and interesting facts, I know some that can’t survive three days without facebook. I find it disappointing and honestly quite ridiculous, but by the next generation after mine, sadly, I don’t think anyone would know HOW to survive without the internet. The colonial times they were trained lumberjacks and such and knew how to survive. Knowledge of survival skills that used to be essential everyday knowledge is diminishing quite fast. I myself enjoy going camping with the least amount of equipment possible, but most of the urban society is just desensitized by time and easy availability of everything they “need”. So I can understand it both ways. Though I would not enjoy having this available to criminals. All I can really say positive about it is lower internet bills.

  4. he has a good point but if you look at the bigger picture the internet is a right which means you have to earn access to it weather it be paying for it or just paying a one of fee which covers you for a year or something but if you are a prisoner which means your freedom has been taken away then the net should be taken away.
    it cant be a human right but a
    CYBER right

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