Internet’s creator slams ‘blight’ of web disconnection laws

AFP

Tim Berners-Lee, the man credited with inventing the world wide web, warned Tuesday of the “blight” of new laws being introduced across the globe allowing people to be cut off from the Internet.

“There’s been a rash of laws trying to give governments and Internet service providers (ISPs) the right and the duty to disconnect people,” he told a conference on web science at the Royal Society in London.

The “current blight” includes a French law that comes into effect this year that threatens to cut people off if they illegally download from the Internet, and a new British law passed in April which could see similar action, he said.

“If a French family can be forcibly disconnected from the Internet by law for a year because one of their children downloaded something that some company asserts that they should not have downloaded, without trial — I think that’s a kind of inappropriate punishment,” Berners-Lee said.

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