New innovation has led to the introduction of internet services which plays a major role in the world of communication. The internet provides an appropriate forum, where people can communicate with one another regardless of their geographical location. Due to minimal regional restriction on internet services, its accessibility cuts across people from virtually all ages with internet knowledge in any part of the world. The conventionally, the internet was based communication mainly consisted of e-mail services. Internet uses signed up user accounts from which they received and sent mails to other registered users (Foerstel 120). Since the modifications of original internet user configurations, the internet has significantly improved in its functions as it provides a wide array option in both private and commercial websites with large chunks of information afloat.
As computers became part of modern human civilization, the development paths in internet development sought to identify and incorporate as much as possible the various aspect of socialization that could be coded in the internet system and serve through improved communication processes. In this respect, internet service developers found some way of configuring more sophisticated services such as voice over internet protocols and instant messaging services that paved way for creation of highly interactive web sites. Presently, facebook and Twitter are some of the leading internet sites which use chats as the latest culmination of instant messaging service among other options for internet communication. Such web sites which are branded under social networking functions of internet communications reflect on the needs to have a communication infrastructure that appreciates urgency and convenience, the limitations in the physical environment notwithstanding.
Internet usage is rapidly becoming a necessity to users who spend most of their time browsing in the internet. The internet also plays a fundamental role in the media fraternity as it is a source of both locally and internationally news. Therefore, Media communication is made much easier for journalist because they can access to vital information through the internet. With new innovations, there were introductions of updated journals such on different blogs which provide diverse information. By far, the internet is today the most significant medium of communication; there are many profound benefits that accompany its use among the world's populace. However, it is no exception of any good thing that has no bad sides. The internet has brought with it a myriad of challenges and in some cases, unique set of unanticipated drawbacks as its disadvantages. Based on extreme case scenarios, this essay seeks to argue the case of applying censorship policies to information sources on the on the internet. It derives from the need of censorship in for internet users in the first place before concluding the extent of its applicability if it is deemed necessary.
Due the diverse nature of the internet, certain sites harbor content with the potential of impacting on the users positively or negatively but not both at any one time.. Positively impacting sites include those which are educative in terms of providing essential academic materials to users. There are also some people who use online services to communicate with people across the continent. Today, communication is much easier through the internet because people can chat in sites like face book. Apart from education and communication purpose, the internet has gained popularity because of its entertainment nature. People get entertained through the internet as they can always play games, download pictures, music and movies. On the other hand, internet is negatively influencing users since it contain offensive and explicit materials. At a very rampant rate, sexual sites like pornography is frequently visited by people of different ages including young children. Unfortunately, children visit such sites out of curiosity and ignorance. It is very difficult for parents to control what their children do while using computers. For this reason, there are controversies on whether the internet should be censored or not. Another reason is the fact that other people use the internet to access and disclose government's secrets. Owing to these reasons, there is a need for the internet to be censored. Primarily, censoring is a way of controlling internet usage by different users (Farhi 5).
Following high levels of possible risks that vulnerable internet users are predisposed to, censoring online services is increasingly becoming essential since it will protect its users from the proliferation of certain malpractices such as sexual exploitations. This occurs due to the presence of certain sites with pornographic content or explicit content that may only be suitable for specific targets of people. Censoring would therefore help parents who have difficult time in controlling their children's access to pornographic sites that display sexual images often oblivious of who their views may be. Such content is particularly considered unfit for users of a certain age. Similarly, the degree of devastating effect that it has on the users is deliberately ignored by the hosts to the detriment of the society. Even though censoring internet content may not have a major influence on the amount of responsibility of adults on the vulnerable group, it is an indispensable requisite to controlling unsociable activities like human trafficking. People especially, women often fall into the traps of human traffickers who advertise themselves through the internet. Without knowing so many people are blindly lured into such illegal practices. Sometimes it is difficult to judge the credibility of a given site because they are always characterized by persuasive information.
To help curb these cases, it would be essential for the internet to be censored. Restricting the internet is essential because people it would protect people's privacy. In terms of e-mail services, censoring the internet would prevent users from illegally accessing other people's information. E-mail intruders would therefore have difficult time in acquiring information once the internet is censored. In the corporate world, censoring the internet can be an advantage because it would save time. Thus, people at work places tend to waste a lot of time visiting sites that are not relevant to their work description. Introduction of chatting sites such as the Face book is increasingly consuming people's time at work places. In addition, censoring internet information will help control the behavior and habits of users with bad and malicious motives. This is likely to save the society a lot of social problems that lead to loss of moral wellbeing. Censoring internet source also helps to define the user at every level using internet sources. All undesirable information is crushed automatically when the internet is censored. People won't receive hate mails or any information from the populace that leads to poor response.
Employers have difficult time in controlling how their employees use or access the internet services. In the long run, organizations are greatly affected because they lose a lot of time that would have been used effectively to perform various tasks. The internet should therefore be censored to prevent employees from wasting their time. Censoring the internet can be of benefit since it will generally control the kind of information that people access through the various sites. A good example is government information that is normally accessed and disclosed by certain individuals. Governments are always strict when it comes to secrets and will always try to conceal vital secrets from the public. Although there are ways of concealing government information, there are some individuals who will always work out their ways to access such sites. Arresting people like these ones may not be a permanent solution because others will still do the same. Censoring the internet can be an effective solution to governments since the public will not succeed in acquiring any secrets (Drezner 34).
Although censoring the internet can be advantageous, it may deny non-targeted individuals the opportunity of accessing important information (Contrada 83). Internet should not be censored because it would prevent people from getting vital information. Such information as educative content, scientific information based on recent studies which may lead to new ideas may be hidden from users with the potential to add vale on them and produce further services. Therefore, censoring internet sources is likely to hinder innovation and new discoveries because the means of acquiring new supportive information is complicated. Thus, people are prohibited from information that would be useful to them. Censoring the internet can be a disadvantage to individuals as they would not get the opportunity to express themselves. Internet is a place where people can openly express themselves to other people. It is also a place where people can learn about the views of others. By restricting online services, people would not interact freely with others. To certain level, a particular government can benefit from internet restrictions although it would be at the expense of its citizens (Contrada 64). This means that internet censoring would only benefit the government while its citizens suffer on the other hand.
In other cases, censoring internet sources may appear like denying the citizens right to information. People always want to get news about all changes that are happening around them and in other places. Restricting online services will prevent them from knowing important information about the government. It is not fair to put people in the dark especially when there are problems in the country. Societies are part of a country and so should be updated of various issues within the government (Contrada 32). Censoring the internet would also prevent the media from accessing and conveying essential information to the government. There should be freedom of the press whereby journalists can express themselves without any restrictions. Once online services are restricted, journalists may be unable to even access international news. In America, restricting the internet would go against the 1st Amendment which states that there should be freedom of speech and press (Drezner 33).
Globalization is increasingly changing the world of communication as there are new technologies which make interactions much easier. Consequently, the computer has gone through new developments aimed at improving its capacity to handle and present information in the taste of its users. As a means of communication, the media uses the internet to reach out to different kind of people in various parts of the world. Censoring the internet may therefore limit the manner in which the media sends information to its target consumers. Internet communication is considered as one of the major sources of information to the media fraternity both locally and internationally. Journalists are frequent internet users as they receive and convey information through different sites. An example is the blog site which influences the media both positively and negatively.
Generally, journalists prefer using blogs because it is quick especially when conveying urgent and important information. Through blog site, journalists are able to discuss a wide rage of topics which include politics, economy, environment, finance and many more. More often, journalists use online services to publish political issues that may affect their country or other countries. If the internet is censored, it would not be possible for people to acquire certain information about political issues. Online services should not be censored because it would prevent journalists from visiting blog sites that are very essential to them. Apart from blogs, journalists normally visit online sites such as the Twitter. Generally, Twitter is commonly used by journalists because it is very fast. Because of this reason, it is often used in the media fraternity to convey information that is urgent and important. Other than this, journalists always visit this site especially when there is a story that is changing so fast. Twitter is best for such stories because information can spread very fast to within a very short time. Mainstream media normally depend on such information since information can be collected and encoded at once. Twitter is also used by mainstream media because it is an additional source of information (Farhi 3).
Primarily, the internet is playing an essential role in the world of communication. Through the internet, people are able to communicate with one another regardless of their geographical backgrounds. Online service is therefore one of the major source of information to media fraternity. As a vast place, the internet offers other services which include entertainment and education (Rosen 3). Although internet is very useful to users, it also has limitations since it is characterized by sites that have sexual materials.
There are also other sites which are confidential like those for the government. Since people can always access such sites, the need for government to preserve its secrets and rationally experience peace in the face of international community, there is great need to censor the internet. Children are identified as the most likely to fall prey of limitless internet access. Hence, children can be protected from accessing sites that may influence them negatively. Censoring the internet can be essential because individuals will not be able to access sites that are not authorized to them. Having mentioned why the internet should be censored, there are other reasons why it should not censored. This is mainly because people would be denied the opportunity to acquire information. Ultimately, the internet should be censored although it would be a disadvantage to people who want to access information and express themselves. As such, there should be internet policies that permit users to access specific sites on the internet. In this way, censoring the internet will prevent children from loading sexual materials like pornography.
- Contrada, Joan. Reno. ACLU: Internet censorship. NY: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark, 2007. Print.
- Drezner, Daniel & Farrell, Henry. Web of Influence. Foreign policy, 145.7(2004).
- Farhi, Paul. American Journalism Review. Jun. 2009. 7. Apr .2010.
- Foerstel, Herbert. Banned in the USA: A reference guide to book censorship in schools and public libraries. US: Greenwood Press Publishing Group, Inc., 2002. Print.
- Rosen Jay. The Weblog: An Extremely Democratic Form in Journalism.