If you don't know, Sir Tim Berners-Lee created what we think of today as the web (networks of computers using an HTTP protocol to connect to each other). And he's still around, vaguely overseeing the web in his capacity as leader of the World Wide Web Consortium. and he's got this to say about the direction the internet is taking:
If we, the Web’s users, allow these and other trends to proceed unchecked, the Web could be broken into fragmented islands. We could lose the freedom to connect with whichever Web sites we want. The ill effects could extend to smartphones and pads, which are also portals to the extensive information that the Web provides.Why should you care? Because the Web is yours. It is a public resource on which you, your business, your community and your government depend. The Web is also vital to democracy, a communications channel that makes possible a continuous worldwide conversation. The Web is now more critical to free speech than any other medium. It brings principles established in the U.S. Constitution, the British Magna Carta and other important documents into the network age: freedom from being snooped on, filtered, censored and disconnected.