The parallels between government-run internet services and the proposals in the mid-nineteenth century for the US government to create a nationwide underground telegraph service are eminent. Before the telegraph was invented, the US Postal Service was run by the government and in this capacity the news was able to reach people across the country. After the US Postal Service controlled the mail, private companies began to build telegraph wires that excited these individuals in the hopes of creating a competitive market and private industry. Unfortunately, this private competitive industry quickly had a downfall after competing companies tried to knock each other out and began to sell equipment that was incompatible with other companies’ equipment. The telegraph in itself was also not a very reliable and easy to use device for communication.
This style can be compared to internet services today. Just as government regulated communication forms were used back in the mid-nineteenth century, public internet networks regulated by the government today are in effect. Many individuals believe that service providers should not charge high rates to utilize internet services if a private network is not at their disposal, as private networks definitely have their advantages. Having a private network allows users to have fast internet service and few limitations on the internet.
I feel that if the government were open to creating better service providers and better communication tools, these services would be immediately utilized to one’s advantage. One of the drawbacks of a government run program would be people’s hesitation in trusting the government to not invade one’s privacy. Post 9/11, many argue that their first amendment rights have been put into question and this could be the downfall of a program implemented by the government.