The obvious answer to the headline's question is, "a lot," given this week's contentious activity between government and Internet culture. But the question was actually less existential and more economical.
Through their European Public Policy Blog, Google has announced the launch of a new website, Value of the Web, that will collect economic reports from around the world in order to determine the "economic impact of the Internet." Some of the research you will find on Value of the Web will look at topics such as the "value of cloud computing in Europe, the value of search around the world, and the Internet’s contribution to GDP - a theme highlighted just last week by the European Commission in its new strategy to build trust in the Digital Single Market."
The post continues:
Even though industrial metrics like GDP can’t fully capture the Web’s contributions to our information society, these reports represent the best efforts so far to quantify the Internet’s contributions to the economy and society. The new website will highlight the broad range of value generated by the internet, including in areas such as the contribution of the firms who provide the essential hardware and software to power the Internet and the jobs
The data from the research is collected and presented into easily understood infographics like the ones included below:
The information found on Value of the Web draws on reports from economic analyst groups as well as individual economists from around the world, like Boston Consulting, Deloitte Access Economics, and Federico Etro. The goal of Value the Web, the post concludes, is to develop a new metric with which a better understanding of the Internet's economic impart on different countries in the world.