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    Government Censorship Essay (714 words)

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    Selina BoyerEnglish 11 APGovernment Censorship Thesis: Government Censorship would damage the atmosphere of the freedom to express ideas on the Internet; therefore, government should not encourage censorship. Introduction I. In the Internet community, there is a large volume of technical terms.

    For this reason, it is first necessary to examine the terminology specific to Internet. A. The internet is a world wide computer network. 1. Electronic mail (email), which is one component of the Internet, approximates person to person letters, memoranda, notes and even phone calls.

    2. Another term that is often used is electronic news (enews/Usenet), enews is a broadcast, free to the Internet medium. 3. The term FTP is also frequently used.

    File transfer protocol (FTP) started as an Internet archival and retrieval medium, somewhat analogous to traditional libraries. B. The world-wide web (WWW), which is another component of the Net, can be used to “publish” material that would traditionally appear in journals, magazines, posters, books, television and even on film. 1. It is also essential to give a brief history on the internet.

    2. The U. S. government is now trying to pass bills to prevent misuse of the Net. II. In order to understand the need for the ever-growing body of legislation, it is important to explore the controversy, and the current problems involved with the Net as it exists must be introduced.

    A. The problem that concerns most people is offensive materials such as pornography. B. Another crucial internet crime is the stealing of credit card numbers.

    III. One reaction to this inapplicability has been the “Censor the Net” approach (the censorship bill), we are now to compare its advantages and disadvantages. A. First, the meaning of “Censoring the Net” must be explained.

    B. However, many experts have pointed out that government censorship is not possible. 1. First, it is not fair to exclude the freedom and damage the atmosphere of freely expressing ideas just for the safety of children. 2.

    Most internet users are enjoying their freedom of speech on the Net, which is supposed to be protected by our First Amendment. 3. Additionally, only a very small portion of the Net contains offensive material, most people do not use the Net for pornography. 4. It must be understood that censoring the Net is technically impossible. 5.

    While people are concerned about Internet pornography, it should be recognized that pornography is sometimes legal; for example, pornography is legal in video and magazines. IV. There are many alternative measures to government censorship which would prevent misuse of the Net and would have the same effects as censorship. A. It is very important for parents to provide moral guidance for their children, and parents should have this responsibility. 1.

    However, at the same time as we carry out moral guidance, we have to come out with some short term approaches to solve the problem in a more efficient way as well. 2. An alternative to government censorship is the technological fix, which would prevent misuse of the Net and would have the same effects as government censorship. B. One example of technological fix is the “SurfWatch” software. 1.

    Also, commercial Internet service providers, such as “America Online”, allow parents to control what Internet relay chat (IRC) sessions are available to their children. 2. Another technological fix is for parents and guardians to have a separate “proxy server” for their children’s web browser. 4. There are no computer programs to automatically and reliably classify material; only people can do it.

    As a result, while practicing technological fixes, the classification of the contents of the material when posting is very important. 5. Nowadays, most internet users classify their postings with standard categories, and leave signatures at the end of postings. 6. The combination of the installation of censoring software and the classification of materials is a much better solution than government censorship.

    Conclusion The Internet is a wonderful place of entertainment and education but like all places used by millions of people, it has some murky corners people would prefer children not to explore. In the physical world society as a whole conspires to protect children, but there are no social or physical constraints to Internet surfing. WORKS CITED Allison, L. , and R. Baxter. Protecting Our Innocents.

    http://www. cs. monash. edu. au/~lloyd/tilde/InterNet/Innocent/1995. 224.

    html. Caragata, Warren. “Crime in the Cyberspace. ” Maclean’s 22 May 1995: 50+. Cidley, Joe. “Red

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