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Open platforms invite controversy by their nature, giving voice to groups who want to challenge cultural or legal principles.Sites like Napster kickstarted illicit music-sharing in the early 2000s, but The Pirate Bay, launched by a trio of Swedes in 2003, exemplifies the anti-copyright argument that “information wants to be free.” The site indexes content hosted by others, providing links that its users can use to download movies, music, books and more — often in flagrant violation of information-sharing laws.The latter’s been around since 1995, an online dating service whose inception in 1993 was originally to distribute online classified ads for newspapers.But that quickly shifted to helping people make screened and interests-matched interpersonal connections, culminating in a service that today operates in 25 countries and boasts tens of millions of members.Adobe’s Shockwave and Flash media players were at one point multimedia stars in the ascendant.Who could have known in those early days, that by 2017, a landscape once loomed over by companies like Microsoft (Internet Explorer) and Netscape (Navigator) would fractionalize and give way to totally new players like Google (Chrome)?
You can see elements of that process in everything from Amazon’s “New For You” product recommendations, to Apple’s “For You” i Tunes content curation tab.
Amazon may be where we turn for paper towels, groceries and last minute holiday gifts, but it’s still e Bay people scan to find vintage or scarce items, from rare pairs of sneakers to sold out i Phones.
Matt Drudge’s eponymous “Report” is most famous for breaking the Monica Lewinsky story, but the site rarely posts news of its own.
The web, or “world wide web” as we used to say, turns 27 years old on December 20.
On that date, nearly three decades ago, British engineer and scientist Tim Berners-Lee launched the world’s first website, running on a Ne XT computer at CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) in Switzerland.