Regulation Of The Internet Essay, Research Paper
Regulating the Internet is a moral issue often debated. Specifically, the issue is if the Internet should be regulated by some kind of means such as the government, self- and also by parents. This issue exits in society today because the internet has become a worldwide medium for communication and information and it greatly influences our culture of the 90 s. The concern is that the Internet is getting flooded with things like violence and pornography that can be accessed by youths or children with just a click. Personally, I do not feel that regulating the net is needed. I believe that the Internet is about freedom, freedom of speech and should continue to be without restrictions, except of course for any illegal content. I find that government control would be unnecessary, since the Internet is still young and growing. Although, I do think that some materials such as pornography should be kept away from minors, but since it is so widely open to every one, so it s easily accessible to anyone with unfettered internet access to those materials. Still, The question remains: Should the Internet be regulated at all? Both sides of the issue have strong arguments. For the Yes side of the argument, regulating the net would mainly protect children from harmful and inappropriate materials, it could also protect a nation s culture from a dominant U.S. medium and also keep thinks like fraud out and protect a user s privacy. For the No side, they believe that regulating is pointless and blocking the net from children would strip them of their right to access information, everyone has different opinions on what is deemed appropriate and the internet was made to stay free from control. On a religious perspective, the Catholic Church views this issue in a different way. First of all the church finds that communications media is very important and for the common good, Society has a right to information based on truth, freedom justice and solidarity. (CCCB, Pg.658) The church believes that any type of information that helps people positively should be free, and believes that this is a right that they should have. Also, they feel that the media should not be able to violate individual rights to their privacy or reputation. Based on the net, that means other people should not be allowed to access into information of other users that is confidential. On the other hand, the Church also believes that anything unwholesome should not be allowed. Specifically, one such influence that the Church believes should be eliminated is Pornography. The Church feels that, [pornography] offends against chastity because it perverts the conjugal act, the intimate giving of spouses to each other. (CCCB, Pg.64) Any production of pornography is a grave offense and should be prevented from being produced in any form, and this means the internet as well. To the church, Pornography is bad. On the Church point of view, the internet should be regulated while not removing the right to good information. At the Yes standpoint, they contain very strong reasons why we should regulate the Net. A first point for regulating the net is based on the Canadian perspective. In this first article, The Internet resists control , it contains many valid points. This article is concerned about the issue within Canada but generally speaking for all users. First, the net actually violates Canadian copyright law due to the fact of all the information being unlicensed. Another article is called Censoring the Net would sap its vitality . One important statistic found in this article is that the majority or web sites on the net is overwhelmingly American and only 15 percent are Canadian. This statistic proves that for the concern for Canadians, that we could be losing our identity or roots and culture through increasing influence of American media. The other situation that is happening within this that whether or not the CRTC (Canadian Radio-television telecommunications Commission) should be able to control these problems. The CRTC as noted from the article, Should Canada Regulate the Net? is a Canadian group responsible for regulating broadcasting in Canada and thus keeping Canadian roots and culture in the media. With the CRTC intervening, they would be able to protect Canadian heritage on the Internet. The regulations are intended to preserve Canadian identity in the face of what many Canadians see as an overwhelming American media influence. (Hesseldahl, Pg.2) The CRTC would be able to keep foreign influences from Canadians; not only American influence, but also other things like email and illegal things.Another issue concerned for regulating the net is that of privacy issues. From the article, Regulating Cyberspace it brings up many good supportive points. One point is that of protecting consumer privacy. There is a problem with companies on the net who actually tap your internet habits and track every single click which you do. People on the net do not know that many corporations have the ability to intrude and collect data on them. Also, many people on the net do not know is the amount of deception on the net. You may be chatting with someone in a chat room only to find it is only a person who is advertising a product online. That is why regulating the net should be needed.Another point is that by regulating the Internet, there could be child protection from improper materials; pornography is the major issue. One specific article, Internet Regulation, Round Three , talks about Janet Reno s attempt to regulate the Internet through the government. With the Communications Decency Act, it would be able to regulate mainly the amount of adult, pornographic materials and keep it away from children. She feels that children should not be exposed to such things at all on the net. Also, there are things on the internet which are already illegal and sick such as child pornography and racist propaganda. At a yes perspective, allowing kids to see these things are morally wrong.
There are some alternatives in regulating the net. The Internet does not have to be regulated by the government but by self-regulation. They could regulate the Net to what they seem to be deemed appropriate. Children themselves could be instead supervised by their own parents and not by the government themselves. There are consequences for these alternatives and they are found in the No side. For the No side, they have many points. From the article, Rights of the Kids of the Digital Age , it talks about if blocking the children from the net, it bans them from their rights and freedom of speech. Specifically, the ones who restrict the kids are parents. They exaggerate the actual dangers that are found on the net about violent and pornographic information. Rather than preparing kids for the world they ll have to live in, these parents insist on preparing them for a world that no longer exists. (Katz, p.123) This shows that many of these children or teens are being blocked out because their parents are over protective. A second point found in the article, The Internet resists control , is easily quoted, What s offensive to some will always be offensive to others. (Dywer, p.1) Basically, everyone in this world thinks differently, so regulating the net would not be approved by everyone. There are many internet users who find that regulating is unnecessary. Some may think that things like pornography is of academic interest while some will think it is inappropriate.Finally, the last point for the no side is that of internet being a freedom of speech. There are many ways of regulating the net and government intervention is the least popular. From the article, INET 98: Domain Names Take Center Stage , it talks about this statement: Government actions worldwide aimed at regulating the Internet have been met with cries of protest from the Internet community and technology industry, which claim the Internet should remain close to its roots as an unregulated public medium governed by its users. (Essick, Pg.1)This just proves how much users hate government control and how much they appreciate the freedom of speech. The article Censoring Net would sap its vitality helps elaborate on this point. The article talks of how limitless the Net can be. On the net, you are able to share information with others, sell almost anything, make your own web page, chat with people around the world and who knows what next in the future. The reason that the No side feels that there should not be any regulations is that the Internet is still growing and has a lot of potential. That is why freedom is valued for the No side. Applying any type of prayer is difficult due to the uniqueness of the issue, although, I would choose thanksgiving as the form of prayer. Even though I m not the most religious person, and modern technology really trigger my mind. I m so thankful for all those highly technological advancements we had made, and it really had changes our life. Technology had converted this wide world into a global village where we could reach out to one another and share each other s ideas. Over all I think Technology, especially the Net, it had brought us closer to each other globally, but improper usage of this super speed Freeway could result of a polluted society, especially to our undecided minds of our younger. To this advancement we raise, and hope it will continue pushes us to a better future, and that s how I would apply prayer to this complex issue. Knowing the facts on this issue, I think the church has adopted their particular position because they are mainly concerned about equality and the rights of people as a whole. Like any other things that humans need to thrive, they need the right to freedom of speech. In contrast, the reason church also finds that pornography is inappropriate is because it stains the purity of people and the fact that sex is a gift only to be attained when married. The church, while for freedom of speech, also feels that pornography should be banned. This makes the issue much heavier on the regulation part since this would be effective on riding the Net from pornography. On the other hand, I m not completely sure which side the church would be on, so probably I think they would also be concerned about human rights as well. Internet being regulated is still something that will be discussed for some time now. The Yes side would want to regulate due to child protection from pornography, privacy rights, and the protection of Canadian identity. The No side feels that children are being stripped of their own rights, what is appropriate to some would not be agreed with others, and finally, the Internet should be keep as a way to express oneself freely. After I had researched on this issue, I still agree with my first opinion that the Internet should be kept free. Although there is quite an amount of negativity on the Net, regulating the Internet specifically by the government is not organized well enough and could not be successful enough in censoring the net. I also feel that the Net should not regulate itself as well since everyone does not think alike and may feel they are being unjustly blocked. I do however feel that parents should always have the last say on what their child is viewing. It is their children, and they may teach them the way of life the way they see fit, but with teens, they are more mature and probably face the problems in a more adult manner. This means the parents should be able to talk about those things that are bad in society and not actually blindfold them from what is actually there. In closing, I enjoy the Internet as it is and don t hope for any restraints any time soon, and besides, I m still a teen, and there s nothing greater than being FREE and UNRESTRAINED.