C.4.7 Explain why the web may be creating unregulated monopolies


In theory the world wide web should be a free place where anybody can have a website. However, hosting a website usually comes with a cost - registering a domain name, getting a hosting service or investing in servers oneself, creating and maintaining the website (requires technical knowledge or the cost of hiring a web developer). In addition, to reach an audience further marketing through SEO (see C.2) is usually necessary to get good rankings in search engine results. This means that for the normal individual a traditional website is not the best option. A better alternative is to publish content on an existing platform, e.g. micro blogging on Twitter, blogging on WordPress or Blogspot, sharing social updates on Facebook, sharing photos on Flickr, etc. . This comes with improved comfort for users.

However, it easily leads to unregulated monopolies in the market because users usually stick to one platform. Tim Berners-Lee describes today’s social networks as centralized silos, which hold all user information in one place. This can be a problem, as such monopolies usually control a large quantity of personal information which could be misused commercially or stolen by hackers. There are certainly many more concerns which won’t fit into the scope of this site.

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