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The Effects of Technology on the Right of Freedom of Speech

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The Effects of Technology on the Right of Freedom of Speech



Freedom of speech is a cornerstone of democratic political and social institutions. It is responsible for the free flow of ideas and information to anyone who wishes to listen. Freedom of speech supports freethinking and sharing of thoughts, but along with these good characteristics there are also harmful ones. With the positive aspects such as art, journalism, and the pursuit of truth come negatives aspects such as pornography, gambling, and hate and shock sites. To continue with free speech people, must accept these negative aspects such as The Blackplague shock site, "The Blackplague", http://www.blackplague.org/. The contents of this site are repulsive, disturbing, and offensive to the majority of the population. There are countless pictures, texts, and videos of sex, death, and the most evil human behavior imaginable. No matter what is included in the site though, it is still a reflection of society and paints a picture of reality because of the people who maintain and contribute to the site. The creators of this site use digital methods to spread their message and raise some questions about free speech and the Internet as a whole. Should the Internet be regulated and more government control take place or should the Internet not be regulated and allow disturbing material such as "The Blackplague" to be accessible to everyone including little children? These are major social questions that are being raised with major implications for the future attached to the answers. Technology has changed the issue of freedom of speech because it has changed the amount of access and overall information people have available to them today. Technology, such as the Internet, ha...


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...iterate culture’s root metaphor, for the human mind"(pg. 11). Print-thinking’s boundaries cannot control digital thinking as print technologies regulations cannot control digital information. Hate and shock sites must be left uncensored because they defend a principle. They are one of the ugliest parts of that principle but they are still a very important and vocal part of it. Total freedom of speech is inevitable, as digital thinking will not tolerate boundaries because they are contradictory to its very nature of constant dynamic change.

Works Cited

Bolter, Jay David. Writing Space. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers. 1991

Gilster, Paul. Digital Literacy. Wiley Computer Publishing

Landow, George P. Hypertext 2.0

Lanham, Richard A. The Electronic Word. University of Chicago Press. 1989

"The Blackplague". 12-2-98. http://www.blackplague.org/


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