Internet censorship has been at the root of many debates thus far in 2018. The purpose of internet censorship is to control or suppression information online that has been published. Formally known as the “information superhighway” the internet is a place where all ages visit.
There are many benefits and disadvantages of censorship on the internet. Moreso, there is a fine line between freedom of the press and publishing violent, obscene or dangerous content. Anyone has the ability to go online, rather it is a 5-year-old or a 35-year-old. How do you find a balance between right and wrong? We are here to discuss the pros and cons of internet censorship so you can take a stance on this highly debated subject.
There are many pros of internet censorship as it works to prevent sites from publishing graphic and explicit content. We all remember these terrorist videos that were leaked on Facebook, this is not something you would expect on a family-friendly social media website. First of all, internet censorship protects your children from accessing harmful and inappropriate information (i.e. murders or even decapitation videos).
From the other perspective, censorship limits the freedom you have online. Censorship restricts your ability to view the content you what to see when you want to see it.
Pros of Internet Censorship
By its very definition, prudence is having a cautious mindset or knowing what is the right thing to do. Most users have the decency and common sense not to post something online that society would consider unhealthy or inappropriate. If you visit Google (without filters enabled) there are some gory videos depicting murders and other high-level crimes. Limiting the number of harmful videos your children have access to.
In the past, users have expressed discomfort knowing that their children have easy access to pornography. Internet censorship methods are implements to make accessing these sites more difficult. These measures included a question prompt when entering websites “Are you 18 years or older?” This is a great start but that child can click yes and gain access anyway. Restricting the access to information has its pros and cons but as long as violent acts are kept offline the internet is already home to endless privacy options.
Limits Harmful Information
We have all heard of the “dark web“, but does this place really exist? Unfortunately yes and these activities occur in places you would never expect. Sites like Craigslist and Facebook give individuals access to buy and sell drugs, partake in human trafficking, and even the distribution of child pornography. Furthermore, with the use of internet censorship, it restricts the chances for predators to find targets easily.
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Minimize Risk of Cyberthreats
Cybercrimes are a rising concern in this digital era. People store a lot of their personal and private information on their computers. Without the proper knowledge of passwords and privacy policies, users can leave themselves very vulnerable online. Limiting the amount of information put online can certainly assist in minimizing the threat of these cyber attacks.
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Eliminates Misleading/Fake News
Furthermore, with news media sites like CNN, it can be hard to know what is real and what is fake news. With the end-goal of profiting only, there are many sites in existence that cash in on providing false, misleading articles online. By enacting a strong sense of internet censorship it could most likely reduce the amount of fake news.
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Cons of Internet Censorship
Decreases Flow of Information
The amount of factual and real news that is published online will be severely limited. There are individuals arrested each and every day for sharing inappropriate and illegal content online. Even liking a post of Facebook can land you in a heap of legal trouble. 38 different countries in 2016 made arrests based on something that was posted on social media.
It costs money for monitoring the internet. Google has over 2.1 billion results, they take some serious pocket change to filter all of the information published online. Everyone is all in favor of internet censorship until they realize it will raise their taxes.
Negative Impact on the Economy
Nowadays there are more and more entrepreneurs birthed into our economy. With the highest number of startup companies in history, it is important that these businesses can freely promote themselves. Increasing internet censorship would have devastating consequences for local businesses. By losing the freedom to sell your products online it has dire effects on the nation’s economy.
Minimizes Entrepreneurial Efforts
The whole idea of being an entrepreneur is having the freedom to create and sell anything. Once there is a governing body acting as a mediator, it limits what you can actually do and how successful you will be. The best example of this would be Nike if you wanted to start your own athletic apparel company it could be nearly impossible. Nike has the wealth and branding power to completely wipe you off of the grid. As a result, internet censorship here would greatly limit the increased flow of innovation. Creating many monopolies across every industry.
In conclusion, by now you should have a decent understanding of how the use of internet censorship can positively and negatively affect the economy as well as yourself. Comment below on your thoughts about internet censorship, we would love to hear what you think.
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