Internet Censorship: Road Blocks in the Information Superhighway

Internet censorship is a highly controversial topic, especially with people looking to protect the idea of free speech. The motivations for this censorship range from the desires to protect children from unsuitable content, to the strict attempts in controlling a nation’s access to specific information. If Internet censorship were to be enacted within the United States, Internet service providers would be required to block any domains that host too much copyright or trademark infringement. U.S. Citizens could soon find themselves along side the populations of Iran and China with being blocked from accessing broad chunks of the public Internet.

Essentially, what this means is that websites like YouTube could soon be censored due to the numerous amount of copyright material within the site itself. While although YouTube dose try to remove all the copyright material on the site, it is nearly impossible due to the fact that thirteen hours of content is uploaded every minute, so is blocking the whole site the only option?  In addition, Internet service providers from Comcast, to PayPal, to Google Ad Sense, would be required to block any domains on the censorship list, and would receive immunity, presumably the government’s gratitude for blocking those domains. Since being a member of the YouTube community and other online multimedia websites for over three years now, I constantly wonder how this issue will affect the way others and myself use the Internet.

Which is why extensive research should be conducted to determine whether Internet censorship in any form is step forward or backwards in securing America from the vast and “semi-dangerous” World Wide Web. Is passing this bill infringing on people right of freedom and speech? Or is this bill a step in the right direction for abolishing file sharing and copyright websites who are distributing illegal material?

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