OK, so I’ve spent a week harassing Tim Wu and hammering away at the thesis, conclusions, and recommendations found in his new book, The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires. After pouring out about 17,000 words across six essays [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6] over the past week, I want to thank Tim for not seeking a restraining order against me for being his cyber-stalker during this period! Moreover, he has responded to several of my rants here with stoic dignity. I appreciate that, too. I would have been screaming mad if someone attacked one of my books this relentlessly!
Anyway, in the spirit of fair play, I want to offer Professor Wu the opportunity to respond more formally here on the Tech Liberation Front. We need to do more of that here, and I feel bad that I didn’t make available to Jonathan Zittrain a similar opportunity when I was stalking him after the release of The Future of the Internet and How to Stop It. (see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 + video!) I am happy, however, that Jerry Brito posted here today this podcast he did with Prof. Wu so that we could hear him in his own words.
Anyway, I’ve just sent a note to Tim extending an invitation to formally respond even if he chooses to just compile some of the other comments he’s already made here, or to post something more substantive (even excerpts from the book). If he decides to take us up on the offer, I’ll post it his comments here. In the meantime, I want to encourage people to buy Tim’s book and judge it for themselves. Despite my deep disagreements with The Master Switch, it’s absolutely one of the most important information technology policy books of the past decade and it belongs on your bookshelf if you care about these issues. And I look forward to many more friendly fights with Tim in the future!