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"The Future of the Internet" Includes Policy Challenges and Social Dilemmas

The Pew Internet & American Life Project has issued its report based upon survey findings called "The Future of the Internet III." Technology stakeholders and critics were asked in an online survey to assess scenarios about the future social, political, and economic impact of the Internet.

Among the key findings were:

  • The mobile device will be the primary connection tool to the Internet for most people in the world in 2020.
  • The transparency of people an dorganizations will increase, but that will not necessarily yield more personal integrity, social tolerance, or forgiveness.
  • Talk and touch user-interfaces with the Internet will be more prevalent and accepted by 2020.
  • Those working to enforce intellectual property law and copyright protection will remain in a continuing "arms race," with the "crackers" who will find ways to copy and share content without payment
  • The divisions between "personal" time and work time and between physical and virtual reality will be further erased for everyone who's connected, and the results will be mixed in terms of social relations.
  • "Next-generation" engineering of the network to improve the current Internet architecture is more likely than an effort to rebuild the architecture from scratch.
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