The Internet is bringing people around the world together to tackle the challenges facing our generation.

In 2031, it will have radically changed the way we approach our collective challenges, thanks to something Chris Anderson, curator of the global TED conferences, calls crowd-accelerated innovation.

It’s the use of online video to speed up innovation. You create a video and post it on YouTube. Tens of thousands of people watch it, share it, talk about it, vote on it...and are inspired to create their own video building on yours. And so on. And so on.

In the year 2031, a generation of passionate activists, artists, scientists and entrepreneurs around the world will build projects together.

 

Because we can all be each other’s inspiration, supporters, collaborators and critics, web video offers the potential for challenges to be approached from many perspectives with stronger solutions.

The global conversation is already growing. Consider the TED conferences, which are built on the mantra of “ideas worth spreading.”

Goran Kimovski, organizer of TEDxKids@BC in Vancouver, said change will occur because of “the sum of tools and platforms that will enable the formation of true communities with no actualboundariesthat can be represented geographically.”

Tara Mahoney is the creative director of Gen Why, an organization that uses the Internet to inspire the millennial generation. “As the largest and most global generation in human history, there is immense power in youth being connected to one another,” she said. “The Internet (and access to it) might be one of the most important political issues of our time.”

The UN recently declared Internet access a basic human right, meaning that no government can deny people access to the Internet. It’s clear from movements occurring around the world that Internet access can translate to having a voice, and it becomes more difficult to dismiss the Internet as a luxury.



In the future, the Internet will expand from a human right to a democratic necessity. If in the next 20 years we take advantage of it, a better world is within reach.

Selin Jessa, 16, is a Grade 11 student who is passionate about the use of art, science and technology to tackle our generation’s challenges.

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