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Culture in the age of the Internet

Hello Tedsters!
I wold like to start a new debate. I was quite surprised to see that no one has been discussing this subject so far at TED Conversations. We speak about technology, science and changes in the society, but it seems as we have forgotten about the culture, and how the new technologies change it.
I wold like to focus your attention to the changes in the culture that are caused by the Internet. This wonderful global network, that allows instant transfer of any intellectual content to almost any place on Earth. Seems brilliant, doesn't it? But have you noticed that the whole world is now watching the same movies, listening to the same music and reading the same books? I wonder if that is a good thing that slowly we are loosing our diversity? Maybe we should somehow protect local differences? Or maybe we should act in opposite direction? Doesn't it annoy you that living outside a specific region you can't access legally some content? I understand the legal and commercial reason why i.e. Hulu or Pandora are available only to U.S residents, but should it be so? Maybe the whole word should have equal access to all the cultural and intellectual wealth?
But if we would like to provide easy access for everyone to the "cultural products", witch I strongly believe should happen, how to protect the author's right to profit from it? Is the DRM the right answer? I don't think so, but honestly I can't come up with a better one.
I hope someone will find these topics as interesting as I do. The world is changing whether we want it or not. I think we need to find answers for these questions, because otherwise we will end up regretting that we missed the opportunity to steer this process that we still have now.

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  • Apr 13 2011: It doesn't matter if everyone had access to the same books, movies or music. Not everyone would read them, watch them or listen to them all. That would be impossible. There would still be enough differences in our personal tastes to ensure that there would still be cultural diversity in the world. True, there would be more and more similarities in our cultures, but I think that this would lead to a better understanding of people that we've never met and may never meet except in an online relationship. Can that be a bad thing? I don't think so. Unfortunately, there are countries in the world that try to limit access to the global internet.

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