A press release onthe Internet Hall of Fame website reads:
Inductees Honored at Historic First Annual Awards Ceremony in Geneva, Switzerland:Inductees were placed in one of three categories, depending on the type of contribution they made; Pioneers Circle, Innovators, and
Internet Society celebrates inductees’ landmark achievements at Global INET 2012
Launches new website to highlight Internet Hall of Fame,
[Washington, D.C. and Geneva, Switzerland – 23 April 2012] – The names of the inaugural Internet Hall of Fame inductees were announced today at the Internet Society’s Global INET 2012 conference in Geneva, Switzerland. Internet pioneers and luminaries from around the world gathered at the conference to mark the Internet Society’s 20th anniversary, and attend an Awards Gala to honor the following 2012 inductees:
Global Connectors:Internet Society president and CEO Lynn St.Amour stated
Recognizing individuals from around the world who have made significant contributions to the global growth and use of the Internet: Randy Bush, Kilnam Chon, Al Gore, Nancy Hafkin, Geoff Huston, Brewster Kahle, Daniel Karrenberg, Toru Takahashi, and Tan Tin Wee.
“This historic assembly of Internet visionaries, innovators, and leaders represents an extraordinary breadth of vision and work. While the inductees have extremely diverse backgrounds and represent many different countries, each individual has an incredible passion for their work. We all benefit from their outstanding contributions to a global Internet, making it one of the greatest catalysts of economic and societal development of all time.”Sadly, to this day, many see Gore's only connection to the development of the internet as a joke, thanks to a claim made in 1999 by a twirp named Declan McCullagh in Wired Magazine article that went viral, eagerly helped by accommodating US media:
The Laugh Is on Goreand then blatantly lies about it:
Declan McCullagh Email 03.23.99
WASHINGTON -- Al Gore's timing was as unfortunate as his boast. Just as Republicans were beginning to eye the 2000 presidential race in earnest, the vice president offered up a whopper of a tall tale in which he claimed to have invented the Internet.
During a March 1999 CNN interview, while trying to differentiate himself from rival Bill Bradley, Gore boasted: "During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet."There's no need to go into detail about how the story was used by Gore's opponents, how it became fodder for late night comedy, editorial cartoons, or how it kept playing in the media during the presidential campaign, and Bush even used it in one of the debates.
That statement was enough to convince me, with the encouragement of my then-editor James Glave, to write a brief article that questioned the vice president's claim. Republicans on Capitol Hill noticed the Wired News writeup and started faxing around tongue-in-cheek press releases -- inveterate neatnik Trent Lott claimed to have invented the paper clip -- and other journalists picked up the story too.
My article never used the word "invented," but it didn't take long for Gore's claim to morph into something he never intended.
Although there were some in the media who actually went back and researched to find and air the facts of Gore's involvement, it was too late for the truth to take hold.
Thirteen years before, Gore introduced the Supercomputer Network Study Act of 1986saying:
"The private sector is already aware of the need to evaluate and adopt new technologies. One promising technology is the development of fiber optic systems for voice and data transmission. Eventually we will see a system of fiber optic systems being installed nationwide.Even Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf, considered to be the "Fathers of the Internet" made little impact on a lazy media feeding on a runaway story when an email they sent in response to Declan McCullaugh's article in Wired Magazine was publicized:
America's highways transport people and materials across the country. Federal freeways connect with state highways which connect in turn with county roads and city streets. To transport data and ideas, we will need a telecommunications highway connecting users coast to coast, state to state, city to city. The study required in this amendment will identify the problems and opportunities the nation will face in establishing that highway."
Al Gore and the InternetOf course, the Washington Post responded to the these Internet Pioneer's support of
By Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf
Al Gore was the first political leader to recognize the importance of the
Internet and to promote and support its development.
No one person or even small group of persons exclusively "invented" the
Internet. It is the result of many years of ongoing collaboration among
people in government and the university community. But as the two people
who designed the basic architecture and the core protocols that make the
Internet work, we would like to acknowledge VP Gore's contributions as a
Congressman, Senator and as Vice President. No other elected official, to
our knowledge, has made a greater contribution over a longer period of
... He was the first elected official to grasp the potential of computer communications to have a broader impact than just improving the conduct of science and scholarship. Though easily forgotten, now, at the time this was an unproven and controversial
...As a Senator in the 1980s Gore urged government agencies to consolidate
what at the time were several dozen different and unconnected networks
into an "Interagency Network." Working in a bi-partisan manner with
officials in Ronald Reagan and George Bush's administrations, Gore secured
the passage of the High Performance Computing and Communications Act in
1991. This "Gore Act" supported the National Research and Education
Network (NREN) initiative that became one of the major vehicles for the
spread of the Internet beyond the field of computer science...
...As Vice President Gore promoted building the Internet both up and out, as
well as releasing the Internet from the control of the government agencies
that spawned it...
...The Vice President deserves credit for his early recognition of the value
of high speed computing and communication and for his long-term and
consistent articulation of the potential value of the Internet to American
citizens and industry and, indeed, to the rest of the world...
Gore with this screaming headline from March of 1999:
Some say. Just a few of the most influential "somes" in the history of the Internet.
Well at least Gore finally got his due, even if most of our own media didn't notice, he's in the Internet Hall of Fame.