The Internet's Mid-Life Crisis

Arizona State University, New America Foundation and Slate
Monday, October 25, 2010
8:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

It is hard to pick up a major magazine these days without reading about the last days of the Internet, at least the world wide (open) web version of it. Recent cover stories by Wired, The Economist and Newsweek have all fretted about how private, cordoned-off spaces - be they Apple's apps or Facebook - are undermining the ethos and promise of the virtual commons. What gives? Was AOL's initial approach to create a walled-off community ahead of its time? Is the trend towards proprietary online cul-de-sacs reversible? Is the Internet merely succumbing to the same cycles all information technologies have experienced - from their freewheeling pioneer days to their buttoned-down commercialization - as Tim Wu argues in his upcoming book The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires?

Premature obits are decidedly uncool, so instead of proclaiming the Web's death, we invite you to join us to mull over the Internet's mid-life crisis.

8:45 am: Registration and Coffee

9:15 am: How the Internet is Losing its Mojo

Tim Wu
Author, The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires (Knopf, Nov. 2010)
Professor of Law, Columbia University
Future Tense Fellow, New America Foundation
Contributing Editor, Slate

Andres Martinez
Director, Bernard L. Schwartz Fellows Program
New America Foundation

10:15 am: But aren't Consumers Driving the Internet's Transformation?

Bruce Gottlieb
General Counsel, Atlantic Media Company
Former Chief Counsel and Senior Legal Advisor, Federal Communication Commission

Link Hoewing
Assistant Vice President for Internet and Technology Policy, Verizon

Sascha Meinrath
Director, Open Technology Initiative
New America Foundation

11:30 am: Adjournment

To RSVP for the event:

For questions, contact Stephanie Gunter at (202) 596-3367 or [email protected]

For media inquiries, contact Kate Brown at (202) 596-3365 or [email protected]

Future Tense is a partnership of Arizona State University, the New America Foundation, and Slate magazine that focuses on emergent technologies and their transformative effects on society and public policy.