Network States: A not-too-distant future or an impossible fantasy?

Is the United States the Microsoft of Nations?

A Network State is an exit (alternative) to the traditional nation state

  1. Voice = seek reform from within, i.e., “let’s stay and try to improve”;
  2. Exit = opt-out and find an alternative, i.e., “let’s go somewhere else that is (or at least appears to be) better:
  1. Network states are run by technology vs. nation states are run by force at its foundation.
  2. Network states could be founded by peaceful means vs. nation states are founded by conflicts (product of wars).
  3. Network states allow its members to be pseudonymous (e.g., interact with others with user names) vs. nation states rely on an accurate record of everyone’s identity.
  4. Network states render geographical boundaries — and immigration by extension — irrelevant (e.g., a purely online state) vs. nation states are defined by borderlines.

Feasibility of network states

  1. Physical force is controlled centrally by a trusted entity — this would be the nation states we have today that own the military & weaponry centrally.
  2. Physical force is decentralized and it’s every man for his own safety. The wealthier people could afford to set up their private arms of security force. There may be a few benevolent wealthy people who voluntarily protects their community as well, but it is not a reliable source of protection to be counted on.

Related discussion: What is THE purpose of technology?




See the present clearer. See the future earlier. | Writings on key trends in the digital economy. | Twitter @wangsjournal

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Wang Street Journal

Wang Street Journal

See the present clearer. See the future earlier. | Writings on key trends in the digital economy. | Twitter @wangsjournal

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