Not the end of the Internet

Michael Holloway mhollowa at
Tue Jun 8 20:18:39 EST 1993

In article <1v25tnINNa7m at MINERVA.CIS.YALE.EDU> smith-una at writes:
>Date:      Fri, 4 Jun 1993 15:37:17 -0600
>From:      Stephen Wolff <steve at>
>Subject:   INTERNET
>In the first place, there is no such thing as "free use of INTERNET".
(other stuff that is also of common knowledge deleted)

>Continued centralized funding of a Backbone Service by the Foundation is no
>longer justified, as it would place the Federal government in direct
>competition with the private sector.

Where have we heard this before?

>The NSF is committed to continuity of network service to the research and
>education community; we will take whatever steps are necessary to assure it.

This is certainly reassuring but, unfortunately, completely at odds with 
what was in the 21 May Science article.  Example (since so few people 
seem to have read it):

	"As in any great social change, some people will fare better
	than others.  The losers, at least for the moment, are those
	researchers (the majority, according to the congressional 
	Office of Technology Assessment, which did a study in December
	on network use by scientists) who use the networks for nothing 
	much more data intensive than e-mail.  One way or another, 
	they're going to have to start paying for networking, or go 
(Yes, I understand that someone is paying for it already.  That is not 
the issue.)

Stephen Wolff's message even contradicts his own statements in the article.
Has NSF's position changed?  Did the Science writer Christopher Anderson 
get it wrong?

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