In what might possibly be a sign of her newfound political power after the recent tactics of President Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel used her visit to Mexico this past weekend to form an international body to globalize and regulate the internet.
Since its early beginnings, the internet has been an open system with very few boundaries, and while its openness can be taken advantage of for illegal activities, it is also what made the globally connected network become what it is today. In the U.S., there has been an ongoing battle on the issue of ‘net-neutrality’ where the government and major corporations have been trying to tackle the internet’s openness at its core, which in turn could allow internet providers to charge customers extra fees to access popular content. So the idea of giving similar powers on a centralized international level is sure to scare those fighting to keep the internet a neutral space.
Merkel used her platform over the weekend to naturally spell out the benefits, which she now plans to take to the G20 meeting in Hamburg next month, and her two major talking points are centering around security and speed.
“Some provider could emerge … that’s an island, and from which things could be done, relevant to security, that could destroy an entire system,” Merkel said while addressing a crowd in Mexico City. “On this question of the rules-based handling of it, we’re still right at the start.”
While Merkel has found recent success in snatching up the pieces left by Trump’s international dissidence and lack of interest in working collectively with international allies as a group, she has acknowledged that in order for something like this to even be possible, U.S. involvement is crucial.