Second, expert participants were handpicked due to their positions as stakeholders in the development of the Internet, or they were reached through the leadership listservs of top technology organizations including the Internet Society (ISOC), Association for Computing Machinery, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), the United Nations' Multistakeholder Group on Internet Governance, Internet2, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), International Telecommunication Union, Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility, Association of Internet Researchers, and the American Sociological Association's Information Technology Research section. For the first time, some respondents were invited to participate through personal messages sent using a social network, Facebook. In all, 578 experts identified through these channels responded to the survey.
While many respondents are at the pinnacle of Internet leadership, some of the survey respondents are “working in the trenches” of building the Web. Most of the people in this latter segment of responders came to the survey by invitation because they are on the e-mail list of the Pew Internet & American Life Project or are otherwise known to the Project. They are not necessarily opinion leaders for their industries or well-known futurists, but it is striking how much their views were distributed in ways that paralleled those who are celebrated in the technology field. In all, 618 additional respondents participated in this survey from these quarters. Thus, the expert results are reported as the product of 578 responses, and the lines listing “all responses” include these additional 618 participants.
In the survey, participants were asked if they mostly agreed or mostly disagreed with eight scenarios about the potential evolution of the Internet we might see by 2020.
They were given the opportunity to elaborate on their answers. The scenarios—woven from material collected in recent industry and research reports and from predictive statements by leaders in science, technology, business, and politics—were layered with overlapping