The Internet is an unfair domain. In general, people don’t know about what’s taking place online especially when it comes to the regulations and laws surrounding it. Most of the laws that apply to the online world challenge everything that the U.S. truly stands for as a country, and these decisions limit free speech, privacy, security, and more.
The actions taken by the government in these situations threaten the social contract theory made between the people and established government which is the fundamental base of democracy. As a whole, the public gives up a few of their rights to ensure others, but the actions taken by Congress and the president have proven that these too are decreasing.
The Internet will always be changing, and it is our responsibility to make it an accurate representation of our society and values.
It may seem that the Internet is only a platform on a computer screen, but as technology becomes implemented more and more into society, it affects all areas — political, social, legal, and economic — creating more change than we know.
To put it simply, the Internet is controlled by obsolete laws that allow for unscrupulous policies to occur and impact the lives of unknowing citizens. Under these laws, surveillance, unfair Internet policies (lack of net neutrality and more), and government hacking are considered constitutional and fair. Currently, the NSA justifies its surveillance programs by claiming that they protect our country from terrorism, but in reality, our privacy online is rapidly declining, and our government is not much closer than where it started from.
We are being controlled by an unjust system, and this needs to change. Unfortunately, these topics are not often questioned by everyday citizens, and they don’t have as much of a following as they should. More should know about Edward Snowden’s actions and the unlimited power the government and large corporations have in the domain of the internet.
To shift perspective, the Internet is also controlled by capitalist demands and corporations. The government aims to make sure that powerful corporations are on their side ultimately giving them even more power than should be designated to them.
Under Trump, privacy regulations have been repealed to allow Internet Service Providers (ISP’s), like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T, to sell and track personal user data without restraint in the U.S. ISP’s sell private information to make even more money from their users, and this repeal has allowed for the buying and selling of personal information to take place without permission from online users.
Most business is being done online and with this comes major privacy concerns about customer information. There have been ongoing controversies about whether individuals can trust corporations with such information when their interests aren’t always in the public’s best interest. Every piece of information that we give away online is stored and documented by companies, and it belongs to them. In fact, governments have taken advantage of their relations with tech companies to access information right from the corporation. These actions ultimately diminish our privacy and reveal the true interests of the corporations that rule online.
With the use of the Internet and other technology, society is drastically changing too. The current generation is constantly on phones and laptops using social media and other platforms to communicate, and this changes what is socially acceptable as well as the status quo. Being on so much technology is thought to be normal, but what are the consequences, and how is tech changing what we know about privacy, intimacy, our interactions with people, behavior, etc.? There is a lot to be researched on these topics that still remains unknown.