Who Owns The Internet? - MrAboutTech


Friday, December 1, 2017

Who Owns The Internet?

Who Owns The Internet

Who owns the Internet? A simple answer to this question is no single person or company or organization owns it. No government can claim to have ownership on it. But then the question comes that how many are there who owns it?

Internet is not owned by a single person but at the same time by lot of the people. I may sound a little odd but you will get it.


Internet is a infrastructure of a network in which one network is connected to other. 

There are lot of different pieces which makeup the Internet. Each one has an owner. They are large corporate companies and have different part to play in order to make Internet exist. These are upstream ISPs (Internet Service Providers) which create the backbone for the Internet. 

Back in time, when the Internet just came into existence, ARPANET acted as the backbone of the system. ARPANET was a project which was sponsored by U.S. Government.

AT&T, Sprint and Verizon are some for the corporations which own a big part of Internets backbone. These companies are known as Tier 1 companies. They connect one continent to another. They have layed fiber optic cables in the ocean and connected the continents with each other and created a large network.

Then comes Tier 2 companies which are also ISPs but are smaller then Tier 1. These are the networks who have created a network at national level and they contact upstream ISPs (Tier 1) for access to the Internet.

And then comes Tier 3 companies which are even smaller and are often called as local ISPs. They cover a city. They contact Tier 2 ISPs for Internet access. The consumer gets Internet access from Tier 3 ISPs.

So, the Internet comes passing three different ISPs and then at your home i.e. to the end consumer.


There are organizations that supervise the protocols and infrastructure if the Internet. 

1. Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)

2. Internet Architecture Board (IAB)

3. Internet Society

4. Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)


Internet does not belong to a single person, company or organization. There are many companies who play a role in making this huge network to work. Some companies have small roles which dose not mean they have no part in making Internet possible and there are large companies who constitute and makeup a big and important part or piece of Internet but that doesn't mean that they are the owner of the Internet.

So, Internet is owned by no single one but at the same time is owned by a lot of people or we can say companies.

There are three different ISPs, Tier 1 Tier 2 and Tier 3 and then there is the end user. The consumer gains Internet access after going through these ISPs. 

There are other orgainzations also who go through and supervise this vast physical infrastructure of Internet and set protocols for it.

So, I think you have got your answer on who owns the in Internet.

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