With increasing tendency of internet-based communication, control of information residing or passing through the internet has become a publicized debate over the last few years. A great controversy concerns the question on whether controlling and monitoring information on the internet is necessary. It also concerns the determination of whether such actions are likely to interfere with or violate the citizens’ rights of freedom of speech and expression (Goldman 1075).
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On the other hand, the need to control cyber crime, cyber stalking, and violation of copyrights, examination leakage and other negative uses of the internet has become a necessity. The debate further revolves around the need to maintain a particular moral standard by censoring the internet. While some nations have implemented strategies to censor the internet, others are finding it difficult because it is difficult to find the difference between censorship for moral standards and violation of rights (Wu 263).
Therefore, it is necessary to investigate this question in a deeper sense. This paper aims at analyzing recent research and literature on the moral standards of internet censorship in order to show that censorship is necessary. Arguably, the internet has become a tool for communication in socialization, business, governance, education, research, leisure and crime, which makes it play a vital role in all aspects of life. This means that information passing through the internet needs integrity, security and meaning.
However, the information should not be harmful in any way. It should not expose people and organizations to psychological or physical threats. From this perspective, it is clear that censorship is necessary in the modern world, which means that censorship laws should be applied to the internet.
The Importance of Internet Censorship
Internet censorship will improve security and integration
Internet censorship aims at controlling or suppressing certain information on the internet by regulating how they can be accessed, retrieved, viewed, presented or published. This process seeks to eliminate the problems associated with illegal or unethical use of the internet and its applications (Salbu 429).
Since the internet is becoming a crucial tool in managing daily activities, censorship seeks to ensure that the information passed through the technology has a high degree of security and integrity while at the same removing possible threats posed by unethical use of the information. Therefore, it is possible to censor the internet in a manner that will ensure an orderly application of the technology (Salbu 429).
Internet censorship will control indecency of information
Monitoring and controlling of information accessible to the citizens is a noble idea, despite the concerns raised over the possible violations of information and freedom of expression.
Although excessive technical censorship is oppressive, absolute freedom of internet usage and communication is likely to lead to a number of social, political and economic problems. In particular, decency of information and protection of children from exposure to violence, indecent and other offensive materials is important in censorship.
Currently, there is a rising demand for cyber porn throughout the world, which has raised concern over the necessity of the internet usage among the underage people. According to Adams (27), pornography has found a better marketing channel through the internet. In fact, cyber porn is one of the most lucrative businesses in the modern world due to easiness of marketing.
Internet marketing for porn materials is vibrant and vigorous because the audience is receptive. It needs privacy, which is provided free by computer and internet technologies.
The sexual stimulating content of pornography is the material’s main marketing strength (Goldman 1080). However, a number of other factors account for the increasing demand of cyber pornography in the modern context. For instance, consumers need privacy to watch and listen to porn materials, which the internet has provided. In addition, consumers are provided with an easy way of downloading these materials. It is also evident that these porn materials are easily stored and concealed to avoid monitoring.
Children and young people are some of the main target market for the cyber porn marketers. Porn websites are many and carry numerous materials offered at a fee or free to download. Therefore, these features make cyber porn attractive.
There is no way to verify the age of the user, which means that children and young people are free to access these materials. Ethically and morally, this feature is wrong as it corrupts the morals of the views, especially children. Therefore, it is necessity to censor such websites in order to ensure that the information contained therein is accessible to the intended audience only.
Censorship will control cybercrime
Apart from pornography, the internet is an easy tool for criminals to target their potential victims. Cyber crime has become one of the most controversial uses of the internet in the modern world. Although the internet provides an easy and cheap way of communication, it has provided a cheap and easy way of executing crimes.
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Cybercrime has increasingly become a problem in most societies because is difficult to investigate and/or arrests cyber criminals. Cybercrime is wide and complex and ranges from cyber stalking to actions that constitute real crimes. With the internet, it is possible to trick people and obtain information or even money from them. Fraudsters have found a good platform of doing business on the internet (Adams 29). They target their victims using fake email addresses, websites and other social sites on the internet.
They are able to obtain private details such as banks details, PIN numbers and other information that enable them obtain money or information from their targets. Every year, thousands of people lose information or money to online fraudsters. In addition, others use internet communication to carry out other forms of crime such as negotiating for ransoms after kidnappings or hijackings, piracy and forgery (Goldman 1078).
The number of examples of cyber crime is relatively large and is becoming complex with advancement in the internet technology. With effective censorship, the world will remain safe because cyber criminals will not have privacy on the internet. In essence, it is only through reasonable censorship that the authorities and institutions can fight cybercrime.
Violation of copyrights has proved to be easier and effective when the internet is involved (Salbu 431). In fact, the internet has provided free access to materials of various kinds and from various sources. It has become possible for authors, scholars, musicians, artists and other parties to post their materials for pleasure, display and other purposes.
Although it has improved both business and information sharing, it has also enhanced violation of intellectual property rights and copyrights. The internet provides a free or unlimited access to such materials, which allows individuals to copy ideas or even entire pieces of work and use it for financial or other purposes.
For example, students, researchers and other scholars find it easy to obtain materials from websites and make minor changes before presenting them as their own. This has a bad implication to the integrity of education system in any society. It is also unethical. Similarly, artists and musicians violate copyrights using the internet, which amounts to a civil crime. By controlling the access and use these materials, it is possible to control all the unethical behaviors associated with the internet technology.
Some authors and critics of censorship believe that it is unethical to control the information on the internet because it is likely to violate the rights to information and freedom of expression. However, it is worth noting that the rate of using the internet for wrong purposes is relatively high. Pornography, fraud and other unethical or illegal uses of the internet have posed real threats to the internet users and the society in general.
Cybercrime and fraud pose economic and social threats to the modern society. Violation of copyrights and plagiarism are some of the problems associated with the integrity of education, research and other fields. Therefore, it is important to censor the internet in order to control crimes, violation of copyrights and other negative uses of this technology. This analysis provides proof that censorship is necessary in the modern world, which means that censorship laws should be applied to the internet.
Adams, Jo-Ann. “Controlling cyberspace: applying the computer fraud and abuse act to the internet.” Santa Clara Computer & High Tech. LJ 12 (2008): 27-33. Print
Goldman, Robert. “Put Another Log on the Fire, There’s a Chill on the Internet: The Effect of Applying Current Anti-Obscenity Laws to Online Communications”. Ga. L. Rev. 29.1 (2004): 1075. Print
Salbu, Steven. “Who Should Govern the Internet: Monitoring and Supporting a New Frontier”? Harvard JL & Tech. 11 (2009): 429. Print
Wu, Tim. “World Trade Law of Censorship and Internet Filtering”, Chi. J. Int’l L. 7 (2010): 263. Print