Joi Ito on the "dark period" of the Web

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Joi Ito, the director of MIT's media lab, is one of the world's most prominent experts on the internet. He is featured in today's Masters of Scale podcast and talked to Axios about the less-open, "dark period" of the internet that is unfolding around the world.

The big picture: Democratic and authoritarian nations, while their style and language differ, are both recoiling at hate groups, terrorists, pedophiles and others. Frightened by violence and political turmoil, they are creating "a balkanized and not-so-open internet everywhere."

House passes bill to restore net neutrality rules

Photo: Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images

The House voted on Wednesday to pass the Save the Internet Act, which restores the FCC's 2015 rules that prohibit internet service providers from blocking, throttling or allowing "fast lanes" for web traffic on their networks.

Why it matters: It's a victory for Democrats, who have been pushing for re-instating the Obama-era rules ever since they were overturned by the Trump administration in late 2017. The telecom industry opposes the legislation that opens internet carriers like Verizon, AT&T and Comcast to stricter regulation.