We the People are regularly pointing a finger at some person or entity whose mission, it seems, is to ruin the Internet for the rest of us. Whether it's the government, hackers, or our friendly ISPs, there is always someone out to turn the Internet into a policed state, limiting our ability to roam free in a lawless space.

But, frankly, we don't want our Tubes tied.

So in a poll last week, we asked our readers, "What is the greatest threat to freedom on the Internet?"

Here's how you voted:

More than 40 percent of our readers rated "government meddling" the greatest threat to freedom on the Internet. (So shame on you, politicos and bureaucrats... for shame.)

We're just coming down from a couple of weeks of shrilling over the Chinese government's censoring the Internet during the Olympics. But the blame can't all fall with China: Between the U.K.'s decision to kick download pirates off the Internet, and Sen. Joe Lieberman's unpopular hope of tossing terrorists off YouTube, among other government-issued threats to "Net Neutrality," our poll results are no great shock.

But, above all, when looking at these results, I have to wonder (aloud): What is freedom on the Internet, anyway? Depending on your understanding of the word "freedom," we may already be in dire straits. The Los Angeles Times yesterday reported that several Web firms, including (of course) Google, are tracking Web users' behavior without their knowledge for ad targeting. Not necessarily my idea of "freedom."

Moreover, how much of this alleged "freedom" is too much? Fine, no one is welcoming government regulation on the Internet. But, without some government meddling, are we setting ourselves up for cyberwarfare and other nefarious attacks?

With hackers and cybercriminals falling under the second greatest threat, according to our poll, it might be something to consider -- or at least fight about on the message boards.
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