Ethics and the Internet (RFC1087)
Original Publication Date: 1989-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2019-Feb-15
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency: AUTHOR [+1]
This memo is a statement of policy by the Internet Activities Board (IAB) concerning the proper use of the resources of the Internet.
Network Working Group Internet Activities Board Request for Comments: 1087 January 1989
Ethics and the Internet
Status of this Memo
This memo is a statement of policy by the Internet Activities Board (IAB) concerning the proper use of the resources of the Internet. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
At great human and economic cost, resources drawn from the U.S. Government, industry and the academic community have been assembled into a collection of interconnected networks called the Internet. Begun as a vehicle for experimental network research in the mid- 1970’s, the Internet has become an important national infrastructure supporting an increasingly widespread, multi-disciplinary community of researchers ranging, inter alia, from computer scientists and electrical engineers to mathematicians, physicists, medical researchers, chemists, astronomers and space scientists.
As is true of other common infrastructures (e.g., roads, water reservoirs and delivery systems, and the power generation and distribution network), there is widespread dependence on the Internet by its users for the support of day-to-day research activities.
The reliable operation of the Internet and the responsible use of its resources is of common interest and concern for its users, operators and sponsors. Recent events involving the hosts on the Internet and in similar network infrastructures underscore the need to reiterate the professional responsibility every Internet user bears to colleagues and to the sponsors of the system. Many of the Internet resources are provided by the U.S. Government. Abuse of the system thus becomes a Federal matter above and beyond simple professional ethics.
IAB Statement of Policy
The Internet is a national facility whose utility is largely a consequence of its wide availability and accessibility. Irresponsible use of this critical resource poses an enormous threat to its continued availability to the technical community.
The U.S. Government sponsors of this system have a fiduciary responsibility to the public to allocate government resources wisely
Internet Activities Board [Page 1]
RFC 1087 Ethics and the Internet January 1989
and effectively. Justification for the support of this system suffers when highly disruptiv...