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A quick explanation of the splinternet

The internet began in 1969 as a way for government researchers to share information, known then as ARPANET -- or the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network.

But it wasn't until 1983 that the internet was officially born, using TCP/IP to interconnect devices.

Since that time, world borders have been drawn and digital iron curtains have dropped, fragmenting the internet in multiple pieces known as the splinternet.

This video will give a brief explanation of the splinternet and the problems it can cause in society.

Transcript - A quick explanation of the splinternet

The splinternet is the breaking of one global internet into several smaller and fragmented pieces due to content filtering and censorship.

This division can be caused by religion, politics, government, technology or commerce.

Countries that have created their own versions of the internet include China, Russia, North Korea and Iran, banning citizens from accessing certain websites in the Western world and creating a splinternet.

Commonly banned websites within the splinternet include, but are not limited to:

  • social media sites such as Facebook;
  • streaming media; and
  • foreign news outlets.

In practice, if a citizen tried to access a prohibited website, they would either be blocked completely or redirected to that country's version of the website -- often only containing government-approved content.

The splinternet can be dangerous because content censorship can lead to misinformation, and governments can feed its citizens propaganda, covering up truth on the global internet.

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