The first thing to centralize was search. Google found a superior way to index our web, and the other search engines faded away. Then Google acquired the one true ad network, and wrote the dominant analytics suite.
Email centralized in the face of rampant spam, with attractive offers of free storage to sweeten the deal.
Facebook won the social network wars in the US, and began gobbling up competitors in other countries.
The mobile devices that are taking over the web fall into one of two camps. One of them pretends to be more open than the other, but it’s mostly a matter of marketing. In practice they both have complete control of their ecosystem.
I tumbled and tweeted another quote from this presentation yesterday. You could easily quote the words that go with every slide. I’d highly recommend reading this if you are at all interested in the internet, privacy and information.
I am coming back to it today thinking that the awareness of your online presence, the data trails you leave and the consequences should sit squarely with internet safety in schools.