Seriously Speaking What Is The Internet?

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20140416_130242This week I had the great honor to be on the show SERIOUSLY SPEAKING with host by Adesuwa Onyenokwe the CEO of TW Magazine. (name dropping spoiler alert)

I also meet with awesome bloggers Queen Lateefah Adesanya of, Chude Jideonwo of and Ono Bello of … well you guessed it The topic of this discussion? The internet and the future impact it would have on Nigeria.

But before we even got on set, Mrs. Onyenokwe asked me a simple question and that was this:

“What is the internet?”

I mean I use it almost everyday, when I wake up … internet! When I get to work … internet! Even when I am shitting … internet! It’s all around us, in our phones, on our computers and in the air. But seriously speaking what is the internet?

The internet to me is just a medium to exchange data. Simple.

But mass data exchange has never been a unique feature, in the 80’s we exchanged data through phones, newspapers, radio’s and televisions. And then in the 90’s cable/satellite was introduced which gave us even more options to collect data. But the problem with these mediums was the WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) effect.

In the early days, if a TV station showed Transformers at 5:00 pm you had to watch it at 5:00 pm and by 10:00 pm the station would close for the day and you had no option than to OFF the TV. As we evolved we got 24/7 stations AIT in Nigeria and CNN in America. You could watch longer but you still had to watch whatever they showed you …. WYSIWYG. Granted you had other options… other channels, but at the end of the day you watched whatever those other channels showed you … WYSIWYG. Your choices were determined by a select few people … TV station managers, they determined what programs you would enjoy, when you could enjoy it and where. In other words, they controlled the data … but the internet disrupted this completely.

With the internet you determined what you wanted to see, when you wanted to see it and if you did not like what you saw, you picked something else. You were not limited to a timetable, if the content was available you watched it. Your content was not determined by the TV managers or newspaper editors, you become your own editor, you became your own TV manager. And guess what, if you decided that none of the data from the billions of people on the internet was good enough for you … you created your own data. You blogged, you youtubed, you instagrammed.

Now data was no longer WYSIWYG but rather What You Want is What You Get!

The truth is that the internet is going to evolve and eventually it would replace newspapers, radios and televisions and potentially even phones. The internet will become all encompassing and when it becomes that, governments/corporations will start monitoring and regulating the internet. So much so that the internet that we once knew will become so restricted that its like watching TV all over again.

And soon …if we don’t fight for the internet then the question will no longer be “What is the internet?” but rather “What happened to the internet?”

PS: That above was one of many discussions amongst the 5 of us on the future of the internet. Watch the full interview in July on GET TV (star times), Africa Magic (DSTV) and Channels TV. Also check out some more sexy pictures below:




twitterWritten By Okechukwu Ofili of
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Author: Ofili

Words by Okechukwu Ofili of
Follow him on Twitter
Stalk him on Instagram
Read his crazy titled books on konga or okadabooks
Feed his children at…no wait he has no kids…. 

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10 comments on “Seriously Speaking What Is The Internet?

  1. I think people are yet to realize how pervasive the internet is and just how limitless the possibilities are. I recently wrote a post about online learning and how the internet is changing the education landscape. With Ivy League Universities offering free online courses, it is a big opportunity for Nigerian students to supplement their education. For those who are interested that is.

    There are many positives to the internet, but like any new technology, we have to deal with the fact that we cannot engage new technologies without trading in something else (You should read Technopoly by Neil Postman. Good book!). You allude to that with your comment on the decline in traditional media.

    It would be interesting to see if we ever get to the point of wondering what happened to the internet. I frankly cant see that happening.
    Monale Alemika latest post is couldn’t agree more: you are a human being first-Jesse JagzMy Profile

  2. We’ll have to wait till July?! I don’t think the internet could ever get that restrictive, the fluidity of it, it’s lack of rules and the fact that ANYONE can create content safeguards it, 1984 won’t come upon us and if it does, it won’t be able to totally shackle the net

    • Ofili

      Adaeze I disagree o. The internet is already restricted in North Korea and China. And contrary to popular belief it is quite easy to shutdown/shackle. Governments can block servers and IP addresses quite easily. It can be done.

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