The debate of who should pay for the networks has been spiking up among the various stakeholders involved. The question has always been should the end users, companies, or government pay for the networks. First, it is important to understand that a network or internet is a worldwide interconnection of computers and smaller networks that employ the use of standard internet protocol suite to allow billions of individuals across the globe to communicate and share files. Looking at this concept from a broader perspective, it will be expensive for-profit making companies and individuals to set up such a network (CEDAR, 2018). What individuals and companies normally pay for is the bill involved in laying cables, maintaining them and this cost money for the companies providing the network services. In reality, we don’t pay for the internet rather we pay for the being connected to the internet.
Communication and information are the most essential strategic issues to any form of setup either government, individual or enterprise. Today, many companies are using a substantial number of communication tools and computers. While the management can access the latest applications but still many departments do not have access to important information readily and have not constant communication (Jared, 2018). To address such challenges, it is important to effectively use computer networks and information technology. This report will discuss why individuals and companies should pay for the network instead of the government.
Network and Internet
Networks allow users to access remote databases, information, and programs from public or enterprise sources. Network have become prevalent in social interaction and as a tool for boosting business productivity. However, a growing concern is the question of who should pay for the network? Another related question to this is who owns the internet? The later question is quite ambiguous because it has two answers which are contradicting (Lee, 2018). Many have argued that the internet is not owned by anyone while others have argued that it is owned by lots of people. No one owns the internet if viewed form the perspective that the internet is a single and unified entity. No government can claim to own the internet. However, there are several organizations that the structure and how the internet is used but they do not own the internet itself (Debate.org, 2018). It operates just like a telephone system because no one ones the whole system.
From another perspective, thousands of organizations and people own the internet because it is made up of many different pieces and bits each owned by a different owner. Some of these owners have direct impact on the level and quality of internet access (Rock, 2017). They may affect the overall experience of the internet although they do no own the whole system.
When we ask ourselves, who should pay for the network or the internet, there is no a definite answer because a network is a chain of numerous parties involved. For instance, the government provide network backbone, which will be used by the internet service providers to provide network and internet access to the individuals and other companies. This is a complex system that should not be overlooked. A network is an interconnection of many computing devices such as desktops, servers, phones, and other components with the ability to access the network for the purpose of communication and sharing resources (Miguel, 2018). This is the major function of any network across the world. And it is difficult to point out who exactly should pay for the network services because at the end of the day all the parties have to incur some cost. There are several internet service providers including IBM, UUNET, Verizon, Level 3, AT & T, Sprint, Qwest amongst others. Ultimately, it is the companies and individuals who should pay for the network because they form the bigger percentage of the network.
It is the responsibility of the government to allow Internet Exchange Points which are the major infrastructure required to connect the country to other networks across the world. The smaller networks that makes up the internet can have owners who have invested and configured it to meet their organizational or individual needs. Many companies oversee local area networks but governments oversee computer networks. The two types of networks make up the internet and the network usage are paid on the go, that is, one pays for what they use. Later in this document, the impact of public Wi-Fi will be discussed including the benefits and challenges that are associated with it. A public Wi-Fi is a typical example of a network paid for by the government. However free it is, it is paid for using the tax payer’s money which essentially means that the users are paying for it.
Who should pay for the Network?
Individuals and companies are the parties who should pay for the network. It is very unlikely that network services will be free unless we get a way if connecting everyone to the network with no cost incurred which sound impossible. The individuals and companies will still have to pay in form of taxes even if the government was to offer internet for free. The government has the capabilities to layout the needed network (Nowak, 2013).
It is important to understand that we need a public option for the network because it is just like a road or electricity grid and it cannot be provided by the private sector. This is because the private sector, being profit oriented, they will charge extraordinary bills which will be expensive to the general public and this is the major reason why the network services should be offered and paid for by the government. For instance, one of the world class networks that a country should have is fiber penetration (Campbell, 2018). The government should provide a high-speed, high-capacity internet connection across the country just like the postal service that mail communication service. This will ensure that the country is competitive and attract more investors.
Putting up a network across the country is a very expensive just like building a highway system. For private companies, they will tend to focus on those sectors that will bring them the highest profit and this is more on the rich and wealthy population. The less fortunate will be left out from benefiting a critical resource as this for the purpose of communication. Every citizen has a right to enjoy network and internet access just the way they need a telephone line.
However, it is necessary to know that people may consider network access as a right, but that is not the case, it is a utility that many countries take it for granted. In other countries, the users pay more to access the internet. The document will focus on the argument that the government should pay for the network installation but the companies and individual pay for the service as they use. For instance, when electricity was introduced, the users used to refer it as the ‘light bill’ because most users only used it for lighting (Dickey, 2013). The same case applies to internet access, where people have always thought that it is only used to connect computer alone.
The network/internet is a utility because it has an oversight model. The internet is an input to almost every task that we do especially as the economy shift to information/digital-based economy. The network and internet have become the driving forces of the economy.
Some critics have argued that free network and internet access funded using tax payer’s money is a disaster in waiting. Their argument has been based on how the internet is being used such as for communication purposes, streaming audio and video content. If it would be provided for free then the users many people will be competing for the same resource. As such, there should be rules and policies to govern its use or else it will cost the providers more money.
Just like television and telephone, the intent has become a critical part of our daily existence. However, internet connectivity is still expensive and that’s why many people do not have access to it across the world even though it forms unlimited source of information and knowledge. Nevertheless, this does not necessitate that the government provide free access to the internet to everybody. The number of people using the internet is increasing rapidly and is not surprising given the services that it offers to the users. It is a vast source of entertainment and knowledge.
Having the network available to everyone will increase flow of information and allows th-em to find the necessary information that users need easily. It is quite absurd to say that the government should offer free access to the internet to everybody; the responsibility of the government is to provide infrastructure for the end user who will pay as they use just like electricity. The internet is a very important component in today’s processes but many have more pressing matters such as medicine and food. Therefore, asking the government to provide free internet while there are still some people having other serious problems is ridiculous. For instance, across the world, millions of people do not have access to electricity or safe and clean drinking water. Many of them are still homeless and have not heard about the internet (Economist, 2018). The internet is important but it is dispensable and thus, the government should focus on providing and improving the basic amenities instead of providing free internet.
Regardless, the internet has several advantages including communication, education, jobs, and entertainment to people across the world. However, there is an increasing gap between those with and without internet access causing detrimental effects within the society like inequality and poverty. Many cities in the developing countries provide free Wi-Fi but still they have to incur some extra cost to ensure that the users information is protected.
Whichever perspective we look at, the individuals and companies will end up paying for the network services they receive. Even though the government may regulate and provides the companies and individuals will end up paying for it though taxes and pay as you go bills. The parties who should pay for the network are the companies and individuals (Nowak, 2013). This is because they make the bigger percentage of the network use and even if the government was to pay for it, it will use the taxes paid by the same companies and individuals.
Many people have argued that they have access to free internet but actually they have paid for another service they are willing to pay such as Pizza at their favorite café or that is funded by the government using tax payer’s money like a local library. For instance, Starbucks customers are willing to pay $5 for a cup of coffee to enable them enjoy free Wi-Fi. Moreover, it costs money to run the internet, network components such as routers is costly and consumes power, the fiber cables may get cut and require replacement, there should be maintenance personnel among other requirements, and all these requires money (Kunze, 2018). Therefore, people enjoying such services should be able to pay for it to facilitate funding of this all requirements.
Is it a good thing to have public Wi-Fi?
More that 2 million jobs have been created that for the people involved in installations and maintenance. The cost of 4G and 3G has increased and this may not be affordable to other sections of the population such as the students, therefore, providing public Wi-Fi will greatly benefit them as they will be able to access online journals and e-books while on the go. Public Wi-Fi helps in situation where there is poor reception or communication and allow the users to get in touch with anyone in case of emergencies (Allard, 2018). Public Wi-Fi also enhances connectivity within the society attracting more business investors and tourists.
The government by setting up the required network infrastructure will allow the low-income users to have access to the internet and a fair price. Not everybody has the ability to purchase 4-G enabled mobile phone and providing them with a free Wi-Fi will facilitate them to access important information regarding job opportunities, health, and e-learning.
However, the public Wi-Fi is very costly project that cannot be undertaken by private companies or individuals. A lot of money is required to invest in network connection and infrastructure (Paulas, 2018). The taxes may increase because of the technical implementation costs and may eventually lead to stopping the provision of other basic public services. The gap between the urban and rural areas is also increased leading to asymmetric free public services. The internet service providers are also affected greatly by public Wi-Fi because by getting the government involved in the communication sector will affect the market competition discouraging investment leading to natural decline of this market segment thus threatening social and economic stability (Cannon, 2018).
Due to lack of encryption in the public Wi-Fi, the users are faced with numerous security threats because the government will continuously watch all the activities of the users and the hackers can easily get hold of the same information. Because of the low bandwidth connection public Wi-Fi is generally slower and some users may use it to spread viruses which may damage the devices or cause time lag.
There exist several methods that can be taken to protect the users of the public Wi-Fi and their information. One of the ways is using VPN which basically creates a tunnel between the third-party server and the users’ devices hiding or encrypting the data from anybody who may want to access the information (Forbes, 2018). It is also recommended that when using public Wi-Fi, one should not access websites that requires login.
Network have become prevalent in social interaction and as a tool for boosting business productivity. What individuals and companies normally pay for is the bill involved in laying cables, maintaining them and this cost money for the companies providing the network services. In reality, we don’t pay for the internet rather we pay for the being connected to the internet. Many have argued that the internet is not owned by anyone while others have argued that it is owned by lots of people. No one owns the internet if viewed from the perspective that the internet is a single and unified entity. No government can claim to own the internet. The major function of the network support communication and sharing resources. It is the responsibility of the government to allow Internet Exchange Points which are the major infrastructure required to connect the country to other networks across the world. The smaller networks that makes up the internet can have owners who have invested and configured it to meet their organizational or individual needs. It is important to understand that we need a public option for the network because it is just like a road or electricity grid and it cannot be provided by the private sector. This is because the private sector, being profit oriented, they will charge extraordinary bills which will be expensive to the general public and this is the major reason why the network services should be offered and paid for by the government.
Regardless, the internet has several advantages including communication, education, jobs, and entertainment to people across the world. However, there is an increasing gap between those with and without internet access causing detrimental effects within the society like inequality and poverty. Many cities in the developing countries provide free Wi-Fi but still they have to incur some extra cost to ensure that the users information is protected. My stand on whom should pay for the network are individuals and companies who use network services.
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