Most people probably do not consider a presidential candidate’s stance on Internet security, online privacy, or the hotly debated “net neutrality” when deciding whom to vote for this November. I do. Maybe it is because I am a writer who thinks about these sorts of things, maybe it is because I blog, or maybe it is because I am a politics junkie and just plain curious. Maybe it is all of these things. Either way, now that the results of the 1st few US primary elections are in, it seems like a good time to do a little investigation into what our presidential candidates think about the Internet.
Last year, SaveTheInternet.com posted an article detailing the candidates’ then current stance on net neutrality, but I haven’t heard much about it lately. I also found it a tiny bit odd that when I Googled “presidential candidates’ views on the Internet,” all of the relevant links on the first page of results were from 2007. I know it is only January of the new year and journalists are busy with more pressing matters like war, celebrity, and crime, but shouldn’t there be recent coverage of an initiative that has the potential to limit the public’s access to information by making the internet a “pay-to-play” forum?
I think so, and to that end, I am pleased to report that Slashdot.org is compiling a Slashdot reader-generated interview of Internet-related questions and sending it to the 2008 presidential candidates. Whether or not the candidates respond is yet to be determined, but as Slashdot points out, a candidate’s silence on the issue may speak for itself.