Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Freedom of Speech and Internet Privacy Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1750 words

Freedom of Speech and Internet Privacy - Essay Example Given that each human being has a democratic right to free speech, Internet Privacy is an important consideration. This becomes especially important since cyberspace is an area that one does not have tangible control of, and one cannot ascertain whether s/he is being spied on. However, in view of the terror threats in this day and age, intelligence agencies have been given considerable authority to invade various areas of cyberspace. Therefore, though people may have the right to free speech, and rights to Internet Privacy, there is a border that needs to be defined. While Internet Privacy refers to one's personal information being transferred, stored or exchanged to carryout business or personal activities, and are not meant for disclosing to the public, Freedom of speech is one's right to speak out publicly, but responsibly. People tend to forget what freedom of speech is; they sometimes mistake it for speaking out irresponsibly. It is important for one to take his or her right to free speech seriously and responsibly in order to use it for what it is worth. In today's world, one needs to give this right more consideration. This is because there are many people who fear terrorist attacks; if they just get a hint of hate speech that another person might utter as an expression of frustration, they could inform concerned authorities. On the Internet, there are many people who express their views on open forums as well as in private ones. Community groups like, Msn My space, Facebook, etc. are ones where different kinds of people converge to vent their dismay at many conditions, such as the war in Iraq, and other severe issues. Most individuals are harmless and only express their views. However, intelligence agencies take these threats seriously and try to trace them out (Markoff, 2006). This is where many Internet users get offended, and feel their right to free speech is being smothered or interfered with. Debate over the extent that intelligence agencies go through to obtain information from different forums is ongoing. This is expected to continue for a longer period with the prevailing global political and military conditions. Privacy with Online Activity: It is obvious that privacy needs to be protected as much as possible, as one's civil liberties should not be disrupted. If one's privacy is not protected in the manner it should be, there can be no guarantee about anything online. It would also mean that privacy and security is only limited to the physical space that people live in and cannot be extended to cyber space. Cyberspace needs to be treated as an extension of the very space we live and trade within (Speed & Ellis, 2001, 238-240). The differences between existence in one's physical space and cyber space have been disputed for a while; many are skeptical about the extent of control that authorities have in cyber space, as they feel that their privacy is being undermined. This is legitimate to a great extent because of the fact that there is control over programs that are not visible and sometimes not even detectible (Speed & Ellis, 2001, 238-240). However, when one makes vital transfers of information, signing them digitally enables a receiver of such information at another point to have confidence in what a user has sent. The receiver automatically

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