Censorship On The Internet


Title Censorship On The Internet
Category Technology
# of Words 911
# of Pages (250 words per page double spaced) 4

Censorship on the Internet
Five years after the first world wide web was launched at the end of 1991, The
Internet has become very popular in the United States. Although President
Clinton already signed the 1996 Telecommunication ActI on Thursday Feb 8, 1996,
the censorship issue on the net still remains unresolved. In fact, censorship in
cyberspace is unconscionable and impossible. Trying to censor the Internet its
problematic because the net is an international issue, there is no standard for
judging materials, and censorship is an abridgment of democratic spirit.
Firstly, censorship on the Internet is an international issue. The Internet was
constructed by the U.S. military since 1960s, but no one actually owns it. Thus,
the Internet is a global network, and it crosses over different cultures. It is
impossible to censor everything that seems to be offensive. For example, Vietnam
has announced new regulations that forbid "data that can affect national
security, social order, and safety or information that is not appropriate to the
culture, morality, and traditional customs of the Vietnamese people." on June 4,
1996. It is also impossible to ban all things that are prohibited in a country.
For instant, some countries, such as Germany, have considered taking measures
against the U.S. and other companies or individuals that have created or
distributed offensive material on the Internet. If the United States government
really wanted to censor the net, there is only one solution - shut down all
network links of other countries. But of course that would mean no Internet
access for the whole country and that is disgust by the whole nation.
Secondly, everyone has their personal judgment values. The decision of some
people cannot represent the whole population of those using the net. Many people
debate that pornography on the net should be censored because there are kids
online. However, we can see there are many kids of pornographic magazines on
display at newsstands. It is because we have regulations to limit who can read
certain published materials. Likewise, some people already use special software
to regulate the age limit in cyberspace. Why do people still argue about that?
It is all about personal points of views. Justice Douglas said, "To many the
Song of Solomon is obscene. I do not think we, the judges, were ever given the
constitutional power to make definitions of obscenity."II. In cyberspace, it is
hard to set up a pool of judges to censor what could be displayed on the net.
Thirdly, censorship works against democratic spirit, it opposes the right of
free speech and is a breach of the First Amendment. Do you remember Salman
Rushdie and his book The Satanic Verses? Iranian government announced a death

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