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Freedom of Speech in Cyberspace

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Freedom of Speech in Cyberspace

Introduction

As the Internet has become more widely recognized and used by people all over the world, it has brought a new medium in which information can very easily be broadcast to everyone with access to it. In 1995 there was a projected 26 million Internet users, which has grown to almost 300 million today. One major problem with this is that everyone represents different countries and provinces which have different outtakes on certain types of freedom of speech as well as different laws about it. This proposes a new type of law that would need to be written in order to determine whether or not something is illegal on the Internet. A person in one country can express what they want to, but that expression may be illegal in another country and in this situation whose laws are to be followed? What I propose to do accomplish in this paper is to discuss the freedom of speech laws of the United States of America and those of France, China, and Canada. I will examine what about them is similar and what about them is different. The bringing of the Internet has brought many new types of businesses as well as ways in order to communicate with the world, but as with each new endeavor or invention, there needs to be a way in order to govern its use and policies. There must also be ways in order to punish those not following the new laws and policies of use, since that the country that the person is in may allow what they did, but it may not be allowed on the Internet or in a different country. In other words, there is the need for international laws governing the Internet.

Freedom of Speech in Other Countries

France

One famous discrepancy in speech laws differing in two countries was that of the United States of America and France in the year of 2000. The French government was suing Yahoo!, a US web search company who also has a sales division. Yahoo! had web pages that were selling Nazi memorabilia on its US based website. “The charge was that the company had violated French laws prohibiting the advertisement, exhibition or sale of any objects likely to incite racial hatred, and that it had offended the 'collective memory' of the country - an allusion to the Holocaust years - by allowing online auctions of Nazi paraphernalia.”

One may think that this case would end easily by saying that a US based web...


... middle of paper ...


... US is a successful one. People should have their right to thought and to express what they believe and think freely to whoever they want. In Canada I believe that the CRIA should follow the model of the RIAA, because it is wrong to steal music from other people. Laws should be made so that one artist’s copyrighted music is protected over the Internet, no matter what country the person trying to download it is residing in.

Bibliography

.Guardian Unlimited. August 11, 2000. Regulating the net
http://www.guardian.co.uk/theissues/article/0,6512,353264,00.html

·The Economist. August 9, 2001. Putting it in its place
http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/jbalkin/telecom/puttingitinitsplace.html

·John Naughton. November 26, 2000. Yahoo! For brave French courts http://observer.guardian.co.uk/business/story/0,6903,402959,00.html

·Jennifer Lee. August 30, 2001. U.S. May Help Chinese Evade Net Censorship
http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/jbalkin/telecom/nyt08302001.pdf

·Nua Internet How Many Online
http://www.nua.ie/surveys/how_many_online/world.html

·Jay Lyman. December 17, 2003. Canadian Recording Industry Hunts P2P Users
http://www.ecommercetimes.com/perl/story/32426.html


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