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THE SHADOW POWER OF IP ADDRESS CONTROL

March 6, 2013

As of 2004 or five it became clear that the power-peddled understanding of Internet as a non geographically defined “space” that until then had been part of the individual’s world consumer society ken, began to dissolve itself and become blurred.

For around that time you began to come across geographically specific webpage advertisements, tailored culturally and linguistically to Cyberspace consumers in the specific countries in which their computers were connected to the World Wide Web.

And the image in your mind of a shirtless, hairy-chested Californian world suffer atop the crest of a great blue, rolling wave, began to lose its connection to your immediate reality.

And today, six or seven years later, using the Internet often feels like you are sitting on the beach, bored and forced to page through your stepmother’s Sears or LL Bean mail order catalogue for want of anything better to read.

And even without thoroughly understanding the concept of I(nternet)P(rotocol)-although you had heard the term in regards to law enforcement and criminal activity on the Internet-you knew that there was some form of system control and individual computer identification going on.

But today it has obviously become necessary, even as just a user, to have at least a novice technical understanding of how computers and computer servers are interconnected.

Because computer server administrators at the instructions of his or her boss-or the owner of the server-can not only block your computer from negotiating with the server itself, but can also block emails originating from your personal computer, as well.

And so a specific individual, even if you have their personal corporate email, can be prevented from receiving emails addressed to that employee, if for some reason management wishes to totally impede communication.

And there are a lot of reasons for that.

But these reasons are only publicly understood as administration or management policy.

And often false technical circumstances are given as a cover excuse.

Or Spam and system integrity may be mentioned.

Because nobody in America is ready to talk publicly about institutional censorship.

How could that be conceivable in a democracy?

Yet you live in the middle of it.

And here are just a few institutions that have blocked my emails:

Raytheon

West Point Military Academy

Columbia University*

Cornell University*

The Broad Institute*

Grupo Santander

Simon and Schuster

McDonald’s

But of course the greatest defense from what apparently is seen by the corporate and institutional world as a force of destabilization, is not making employee emails publicly available whatsoever on web pages.

And this is a most convenient pretext for the fortification-solidification-of dominant, de facto positions of power and interest over society itself.

Because I am not talking about money and the possibility of my benefiting monetarily in some way: I don’t work for money; and this is exactly why am free to say and write what I feel I need to.

And quite obviously I address broader issues.

And I do it most professionally-but I don’t get paid for it.

And I do it-partly-because I can.

For I cannot be pressured by de facto power with the threat of loosing my income.

But don’t come to me with a vision of Internet as a free space for vibrant activity and human endeavor of all kinds-it’s not.

It is most severely controlled precisely because of its potential.

But this control is in the shadows and it is-for the most part-not accountable publicly in anyway.

And the monetization of internet itself is used as a way of hiding what is a clear tendency and effort of cultural, status quo reinforcement on the part of Pentagon Democracy.

And after a brief hiatus of sorts in the 90s and the promise and optimism of World Society evolution, we are back once again to the 1920 or 30s streets of Chicago or Kansas City, when around that time A.J. Liebling said:

“Freedom of the press is guaranteed only to those who own one.”

Just like American Carnival Culture Capitalism** has always preferred it.

And it’s the rube** and his ignorance of Internet Protocol and its mechanics that are played on as an informational advantage by power.

And it is this ignorance, generally in the whole of society, that partly keeps the circus master coming at you with lions, and fire and freak shows-what ever it takes to get you to fish in your pockets for a dollar.**

I say “partly” because there are many other factors that need to be addressed if one is to understand the cultural space and context that has been the US historical experience up until today.

It’s time we got formally down to business.

______________________________

*Servers that do not permit multiple recipient emails to reach individuals within their system.

**Term and concept-and imagery-that I have roughly borrowed form some texts by Hunter S. Thompson from the ESPN column that he produced in the early 2000s, and who was referencing himself PT Barnum.

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One Comment
  1. My emails are no longer rejected by @usma.edu (14mar2013)
    USMA= “United States Military Academy”

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