Jessica SuarezProfessor Phillips L.
KEnglish 101 (19708)15 December 2017 Censorshipversus National SecurityShouldthe internet be censor by the US Government?Asthe internet became one of the most useful resources in the world, internetcensorship has become a common issue for the government. A study in 2005 and 2012by Freedom House found that there are many tactics used by various governmentsworldwide to control the free flow of information online. From 2005 to 2012, governmentsincluding the United States, included an increased number of regulation tactics.Unlike business companies and government facilities were they can censor anyoneuses public computer, however, in the First Amendment to a U.S.
Constitution,several freedoms are protected. I am against internet censorship. I believe weshould protect our freedom of speech. The government should not have the powerto censor the internet.
Additionally, major internet companies disagree withthe government’s regulations assumption that the new proposed law, NetNeutrality will be beneficial for citizens. Whether or not internet censorship will protect anyone using theinternet, the government should not pass several laws that censor theircitizen’s online activities because it eventually takes away their freedom ofexpression.Inan age where the U.S. Government can collect data whenever a citizen uses theirmobile devices or computers – when they use search engines, use social forums,and send emails – the challenge for the U.
S. Government is to determine if theyhave a potential threat to their citizens and national security. According tothe Freedom on the Net 2012 editors: The Government’s attempts to blockspecific applications or technologies;and legal and regulatory ownership of and control overthe Internet and mobile phone access providers. “Limits onInternet content” addressed the extent of filtering and blocking certainwebsites, as well as other kinds of censorship and self-censorship. (Kelly,Cook, and Truong, 2012, 569-581)Thereis a difference between internet censorship and complete internet freedom: oneof them is protected by the First Amendment.
Anyone who uses computers in agovernment facilities or school has to agree to their censorship rules in orderto use online services. One popular monitoring is Firewall, which is done inboth government facilities and grade schools computers. The website, McAfee, is a popular firewallprotection program, explains that the software can be installed to keep anywebsites that the employer’s administration chooses to block to prevent inappropriatecontent from children and employees. Someexperts have argued that a range of legitimate concerns about children can bevulnerable to pedophiles and spammers.
In 2000, the Children’s InternetProtection Act (CIPA), a law that requires that K-12 schools and libraries touse internet filters to protect children from harmful online content, wasenacted by Congress to reduce children from being exposed to pornography andhate crime. There also been other laws to help reduce crimes targetingbusinesses. Laws like Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA)have caused controversy because the United States has a history of freedom ofexpression. Even though these laws have passed to help reduce criminal activityonline, it has affected citizens who strongly agree with freedom of expression.Butcensoring citizen’s online activities can have unintended effect of makingcitizens resentful.
On January 18, 2012, in protest to stop proposed bills likeStop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) from passing, majorwebsites protested by going “dark” for twenty-four hours. Professor Richard A.Epstein from the University of Chicago warns that “It is difficult to tellwhich reasons for censoring content are valid because nations tend to filterdifferent kinds of Internet content.” (Epstein, 2010) Freedom Net 2012 rankedvarious countries from restrictive to open internet: (One) As this analysisindicates, U.S. citizens can become disgruntled when internet censorship lawsare enforced to their full extent. New government branches can be part of theU.
S. expense by opening a new branch leaving it to the citizens to pay forexpenses in their taxes. The U.S. government, in other words, may benefit fromshowing more concern on the citizen’s safety by mentioning protection for thechildren and anti- terrorism.Fig.
1. This Jonikcomic suggests that The U.S. Government uses “anti-terrorism” and “protect kids”as the outer layer of controlling internet speech. (Jonik, 2011)Additionally,major internet companies disagree with the federal government’s regulationsassumption that internet censorship can reduce criminal activity. “Many stategovernments in the United States have enacted open records law to supportfreedom of information” (U.S. Department of Energy, 2013).
Other experts arguethat internet freedom isn’t safe to national security. There have been a fewwhistleblowers that leaked classified information to the public. The mostrecent leak was in 2013; Edward Snowden, a former central intelligence agent(CIA), leaked Nation Security Agency (NSA) classified information withoutauthorization.
Snowden had to seek refuge in Hong Kong to avoid prosecution inthe United States. While in Hong Kong, Snowden publicly announced that he willseek asylum in Iceland, because Iceland is known for free speech protections. Manycountries offered to take him in to their country because they saw Snowden’sbrave act heroic.
When Snowden unexpectedly left Hong Kong and flew to Moscow, theRussia Government decided to grant Snowden a temporarily asylum for one year. Thismeant Snowden was safe from U.S.
prosecutors, hoping that they can put him injail for espionage. “Depending on the jurisdiction that online users are in,there could be some major consequences.” (XXXXXXX)Howmuch censorship is deemed to be appropriate in defending national securitywhile still permitting adequate freedoms to reporters in support of the FirstAmendment? (Ingle, 2007). The United States has a long history of protectingthe First Amendment; freedom of speech.
What is considered inappropriate andappropriate varies from country to country. According to Professor DerekBambauer from the Brooklyn Law School, he believes, “Internet freedom is a term that should be abandoned for now,because in a real-world sense, it is too general to be useful.” (Bambauer,2010) Whatwould happen if the proposed bill, Net Neutrality passes? This would change theU.S’s economics.
Congress needs to protect the free internet while preservinginternet freedom. It could open a new governmentbranch that will be funded as an expense, most likely citizens will have to payfor more taxes to run that branch’s expenses. Economically speaking, this wouldaffect many small online business. Major companies would have an advantage tofaster internet content and charging for it will have its cost increase. NetNeutrality can affect the way we use the tool for resources. “Former Google CEOEric Schimdt argued against it at the time, saying he was worried thatreclassification meant “starting to regulate an awful lot of things on theinternet.
” More than 70 countrieswith government representation have approved similar freedom of informationlegislation. (Jansen, 2013)Thereis political tension on internet freedom but it can conflict the requirementsof cyber security. Canada and _____ were accused of Pro-governmentcommentators are paid to manipulate online discussions to influence the massesin the direction that the government favors.