The network that made possible the sale of messiah-inscribed toast and popularised videos of cats playing piano – the Internet – has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
It is one of 237 indivdual nominations for this year’s prize, which also include various inanimate fruits and vegetables.
The final list was decided in Norway last week after it was pushed by the Internet for Peace organisation.
The BBC reports the Internet is up against tough competitors including Russian human rights activist, Svetlana Gannushkina, famous for helping Chechen refugees, and Chinese activist Liu Xiaobo for his work in Charter 8, a document that calls for greater freedoms and democratic reforms in China.
The Internet for Peace group – supported by Creative Commons chief executive officer, Joi Ito, Nobel Peace Prize 2003 winner, Shirin Ebadi, and fashion designer, Giorgio Armani – said the network should win the prize on its ability to promote democracy.
“Contact with others has always been the most effective antidote against hatred and conflict. That’s why the Internet is a tool for peace. That’s why anyone who uses it can sow the seeds of non-violence. And that’s why the next Nobel Peace Prize should go to the Net,” the group wrote on its web site.
It is unclear if the $1.5 million prize will be divided among the estimated 1.6 billion Internet users.