People built the Network from the connections between them.

Each - like their own neurons - would absorb communications that came toward them. They'd absorb phone calls, emails, text messages, articles, tweets, opinions, insults, cries for help...

When enough came to provoke a response, there was no choice but to send communications of their own - they would, in essence, fire.

At first there were only so many of them - but soon, as more and more people joined the network, there were more connections between them than there were in their own brains.

The Network was stupid; and then it was clever; and then it was so very clever that it understood what it was and was able to monitor the contents of itself.