Digital Roots. Historicizing Media and Communication Concepts of the Digital Age

Scholars have successfully attempted to historicize global governance, comparing the Internet to telephone and broadcasting, from a primarily legal standpoint. Among these scholars, historians have also studied particular issues that are relevant to Internet governance, e.g. openness and
net neutrality. History is relevant for the concept of global governance for atleast two reasons: to historicize the concept in itself through the Internet/digital age (the evolution and enrichment of the notion in the past 30 years, with key turning points such as the creation of ICANN and WSIS) and to
flesh out continuities through time with other “global media” or “global issues,” such as international standardization, multi-stakeholderism, and communication rights. This chapter addresses these issues at three levels: periodization of the key concept of “global governance” since the 90s; evolution of the state of the art/research on global (Internet) governance; analysis of global governance in the broader field of media and communication.

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