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description Journal article public Journal of International Commercial Law and Technology

The Exclusivity of Ultrafast Communication Networks

B. H. M. Custers
Published 2008

Abstract

Efforts are being made to develop a new generation of communication networks,based on ultrafast optical communication. This is likely to result in a significant increase in thespeed and volume of information transfer on communication networks such as the Internet.However, the introduction of these new types of networks also requires more from its users. Becausethese new networks are more sophisticated, there are likely to be more costs involved and users haveto be more knowledgeable about the new technologies in order to be able to use them. Suchrequirements in both costs and knowledge may prevent groups of people from access to thenetworks. If larger groups of people are excluded from the networks, social polarization may result.Another effect of exclusive networks may be the limited number of providers of structure andcontent, which might lead to manipulation of the information provided. In this contribution, theeffects of exclusive ultrafast communication networks are discussed and some suggestions are madeon how to deal with this.

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