I was reading my FreePress newsletter, and saw a quote from some person (who shall remain nameless) who said that nothing good has ever come from the internet. I think this statement is just insane. I realize that they’re fighting against Net Neutrality, and they’re thinking with their wallet, but that is just a ridiculous comment to make.
There ARE good things that have come from the internet. I have been working with one of them just recently. Lulu is a prime example of something amazing that the internet has provided. When I was about 18, I decided that I wanted to try to publish the writing that I had done. I had a sci-fi novel, and a collection of poetry. Back then, you had to get a publisher’s guide, print copies of your manuscript, and apply, apply, apply. I got enough rejection letters to wallpaper a room. Seems at that time if you couldn’t afford an agent to solicit for you, you were S.O.L.
Late last year, I discovered the wonder called Lulu. A great service that allows aspiring writers to publish their own work, and get it ready for national distribution. They provide you with everything you need to get your work out into the world. If not for this service, I would probably never be a published writer. But thanks to them, I now have 2 books out there in the world, and the opportunity to get my others out as well.
What else good has come from the internet? Well, how about the fact that with so many people out of work and unable to afford the education that is now required to get work, they can find ways to make money online. Writing sites have been wonderful for us. I can turn my writing into money with very little effort outside of the writing itself. There are several sites like this, that allow people to make money from their writing. POD sites like CafePress and Zazzle provide a way for people to turn their art into a living by making it easy to add their designs to a range of products and sell them without the hassle of doing their own printing, shipping and payment processing. There are a number of other sites that provide people with ways to make money from home. Without these sites and services, a lot of us would be starving and homeless.
Let’s not forget the wealth of information that is available on the internet. Granted, you can’t take everything you find on the ‘net as gospel because there is a certain level of misinformation that’s spread, but there are plenty of reliable resources that people would not have access to otherwise. A library would be hard-pressed to house that level of knowledge in print format.
At any rate, I think that there’s a lot of good that has come from the internet, and I think people shouldn’t take it for granted. I know that greedy companies are trying to take that away from us, and we need to do what we can to make sure that they don’t succeed. I would hate to see a day when an ISP can decide what sites I am and am not allowed to see, and what information and services I’m allowed access to. I think the idea of a free internet is something that’s worth fighting for.
Image: Public Domain, Pixabay