Growing up, I never capitalized the word "internet", nor had it ever occurred to me to do so. I would never have even thought to consider it a proper noun. It was not until Opera introduced an inline spellchecker in Opera 10 which marked the uncapitalized form as incorrect that I consciously became aware that some people considered it convention to capitalize it. At the time, it felt... wrong, somehow. I considered it to be a technology, or a medium, like any other, and would have at the time no sooner capitalized it than I would capitalize the words "telephone" or "radio". I began making a conscious effort to not capitalize it, because for some reason, once I became aware that there were differing conventions, the choice suddenly became much more noticeable.
Since then, however, something has changed in my subconscious. I'm not entirely sure what the change was, but slowly, it seemed as though my thought process reversed, to the point that I was seeing that there is, as it were, one Internet. The Internet. And since there is one Internet, and that is the name of this connection of networks, my mind kept telling me I ought to capitalize it, as if to differentiate it from the other internet[work]s that no one talks about, even as I still struggled not to.
Every time I have to type it, it becomes harder and harder to decide whether or not to capitalize it, and now it seems as though I struggle almost obsessively over this trivial dilemma. Sometimes, when I feel it is appropriate in context, I will even reword my sentence to use the less-ambiguously-capitalized World Wide Web instead (which is odd, since we oftentimes colloquially shorten this to the uncapitalized "web"), simply to avoid having to make a choice.
I fear it's driving me mad.
So, now that I've made myself sound perfectly crazy, time to get the input I came here for: how do the rest of you treat the word? Please do comment to explain your reasons, if any, for your choice.
Regarding the INTERNET
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