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The Effects of Media on the Youth

Discuss about the Information Ethics and Management for Freedom of Speech.

The media has transformed to be one of the most powerful tools, which has significant influence, especially on public opinion. The effects of the media, on the other hand, have a dangerous effect, especially on the youth. Individual identity is influenced by the media, and the entire society suffers the negative consequences of the overreliance on media platforms to convey different sets of information to different audiences (Alonso and Oiarzabal, 2010). The modern media is a communication tool used by people in different countries while ignoring communication risks which may be involved. The media includes all platforms used to relay information such as television shows, cartoons, advertisements, and the internet. All these have an impact on individual lives and should be used in a rational manner (Putnam and Pacanowsky, 2013). While some people have stepped up to air their views on media usage and content displayed in the media, others are keen to state that restrictions on media are bound to lead to a violation of the freedom of speech. This paper provides an argumentative essay regarding the presence of restrictions on what should be posted or not be posted on the internet (Bennet, 2012). The focus is on the impact of these restrictions on the freedom of speech, which cannot also be ignored in the long run. Internet content restriction should not be encouraged, as it limits the society from a lot of modernization benefits. 

Television shows have generally raised a lot of concern, especially considering the frequent violent content which is portrayed by the media on a daily basis (Putnam and Pacanowsky, 2013). Considering the humor and profane language, some of the aspects seem to be ignored, while others are keen to monitor their children’s exposure to different content. These aspects lead to controversial aspects in the media that should not be overlooked. Proponents of restrictions on media content agree that tobacco and alcohol advertisements, for example, should not be permitted on prime time television. At this time, most teenagers and children are viewing television, which in turn exposes them to irrational content (Bowe et al. 2014). By portraying such commercials on the prime-time television, the youth ends up being convinced to believe that the behaviours depicted and portrayed are embraced and accepted by the society which is opposite from the truth.

There is a need to put into consideration that in the modern age, the youth and teenagers watch television without adult supervision, which has consequences as well (Putnam and Pacanowsky, 2013). Such commercials make it very hard to regulate the behavior and morality of these children and adolescents in the society. Children to be precise are very vulnerable to advertisements about what is healthy and what is unhealthy for them. Different studies also affirm that alcohol advertisements also have a negative impact on adolescents and increase early drinking rates among teenagers. 

Proponents and Critics of Restrictions on Media Content

Trolling has been a common practice especially in social media platforms such as Twitter in the modern day. The internet has for a long time now, been used as an avenue of defamation, which in turn, hurts the reputation and peaceful well-being of other individuals (Putnam and Pacanowsky, 2013). A lot of debates surround the concept of free speech with the internet. However, people need to be sensitive enough of whatever they chose to publish online, to also safeguard the reputation of others hence the need for restriction on internet posts. The freedom of expression enjoyed by one should not be allowed to limit the freedom of the other person (Putnam and Pacanowsky, 2013). Hence, commitment to free speech needs to have regulations as well, to eliminate the aspect of bullying and abuse to others. Consequences have to be put in place and with these; it will be easier to enhance safe internet use, without interference from others. Suzanne Monroe, a journalist, is exceptionally sympathetic to the same concept.

There is a need to also put into consideration the costs involved in allowing people to go about saying whatever they want, without minding the wellbeing of others. Therefore, ideas ought to be scrutinized, and unanimously addressed, and the restrictions on internet postings are implemented to enhance positive communication.

The most common argument for censorship is related to child pornography. Most individuals believe that the government does not do much when it comes to the protection of the young ones against explicit sexual content on the internet (Putnam and Pacanowsky, 2013). Experts have over time proven that information relayed on internet websites play a very significant role in the exposure of children to pornographic content, which is immoral due to their young age (Fisher, 2011). The government, therefore, needs to try harder, in eliminating what it can, about sexual content distribution across the internet. Child abuse materials cannot be banned merely, but censoring of children through the utilization of different available filtering systems could also work quite well. These will help keep children away from sexual content at a young age. Parents should also be sensitized to the availability of numerous software systems which facilitate parental control of materials on the internet, and what their children can post as well. 

The internet has made the world a tiny platform, which is commonly referred to as the global village. In the modern day, it does not necessarily matter the cultures or the language spoken by different individuals (Von & Von, 2015). The significant aspect is to come up with the most incredible common ground, both in the ideological sense and intellectual sense, to connect with others. Therefore, imposing internet restrictions will limit socialization, which will, in turn, lead to lack of global social cohesion.

Costs of Implementing Internet Censorship

Implementation of internet censorships is bound to lead to the incurrence of significant costs by the government (Greenberg & Baron, 2013). The technology and labor required are in itself sophisticated, which in turn leads to increased costs in the process. The cost, in this case, may be coming from schools, corporate budgets or even the government itself, but can be more effectively spent on other more important issues despite the scale (Thomas, 2013).

Different businesses have deferent interest groups, which are reached out to, through internet platforms. Imposition of censorships is bound to limit access to business information by all possible consumers, as only a number will be allowed access, based on the government requirements set. This, in turn, might lead to a decline in advertisement effectiveness (Garnham, 2013). For instance, if a business targets the youth, censorships in a specific country may bar youths from different countries to access the same content, which limits the business audience. 

Arguments against restrictions on what should be posted on the internet

The internet has been ranked as the most dangerous social platform for kids in the modern day. The internet encourages individuals from different parts of the world to meet online, communicate, share, and this leads to group polarization. This refers to a concept where likeminded individuals interact with one another and interact in ways which could lead to crime. The idea of age restriction on access and use of the internet might be considered adequate, but might also do more harm than good. Universal age restriction on posting on the internet and its use might affect education in the modern day. The internet has been incorporated into most public and private learning institutions, and restriction will make learning much more difficult. The advantage in education is apparent when the vast availability of information is realized (Gordon & Loeb, 2016). The lack of social contact a child might have will also lead to more harmful effects where restrictions are imposed. With this in mind, the governmental restriction is unnecessary.

Allowing the government to interfere with what is being posted on the internet will affect the freedom of speech and expression in the modern day. Government restrictions might be set too high, which will in turn, limit specific individuals from internet access, as well as specific information from being availed to the internet users. With this in mind, the government may also use its powers to limit companies, and their bold expression when it comes to political aspects. Limiting internet posts and implementing bureaucracies should not, therefore, be encouraged. Every individual, group or society has a right to freely express themselves, provided they do not interfere with the rights of other citizens (Hunterman & Morgan, 2011).

Arguments Against Restrictions on Internet Postings

Another primary debate focuses on weapon content, such as guns, knives and the purchase of weapons, together with information on the same. Such restrictions are bound to cause problems especially for people who benefit from the same. For example, focusing on YouTube as a media platform, there is a specific channel referred to as “LassergGadgets” which is famous for the creation of laser weapons, based on images presented from games (Schlesinger, 2015). Weapons created can pop balloons, which sounds extremely scary. A lot of other channels are present, where people use content focusing on violence and weapon production to make a living. These are never used to cause any harm, but only as a demonstration to make a living (Kietzman et al. 2011). Restriction on internet content is bound to paralyze the business of such platform owners, considering that they are not focused on criminal activities, but are only focused on income generation which is a common phenomenon.

The internet is responsible for making the world a smaller platform and is commonly considered as a global village.  In the modern world, the language spoken does not matter in any way. The primary objective is to find common ground with other cultures, and identify what one has in common with other people. If government censorship is implemented on internet sites, all these will be lost. It will be more difficult to identify with others, and learn more about other people, leave alone identification with their similarities (Kraut et al. 2010). Therefore, internet censorships are bound to interfere with social relations among people.

Implementation of internet censorship is very costly to most governments, considering the technological infrastructure which is needed.  The entire process is bound to take up resources and a lot of time. Also, labor and all the equipment required setting up firewalls and filters are bound to be sophisticated and highly expensive. Therefore, there is a need to upgrade gradually, which is however limited by government budgets. The money to be used on internet posting restrictions can be effectively disbursed to more critical issues in the world at large (Leuthold, 2011).

Conclusion

It may be genuine that the internet restrictions are in goodwill in the modern day. Most people are only focused on the protection of their kids and their families (Miller, 2014). However, there is a need to consider whether imposition of restrictions will lead to safer living or child protection in the society. There is a need to consider that people have lived without the internet for decades, while crime rates were still present. The best thing for the children and the society, in general, is to embrace education and protection mechanisms especially for the young ones to limit their exposure to internet content (Putnam and Pacanowsky, 2013). Restriction on weapon content, for instance, does not necessarily mean restriction of criminal activities. Criminals will still be criminals. The ease of access to such information will help most civilians to fight off any social evil such as crime, rather than ignite it through the notion of innocence and lack of being informed. There is a need to, therefore, embrace morality in general, and put into consideration more intense strategies, which will enhance increased accountability and responsibility in the use of the internet. 

Reference List

Alonso, A., and Oiarzabal, P. J. (Eds.). 2010. Diasporas in the new media age: Identity, politics, and community. University of Nevada Press.

Bennett, W. L. 2012. The personalization of politics: Political identity, social media, and changing patterns of participation. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political    and Social Science, 644(1), 20-39.

Bowe, H., Martin, K., and Manns, H. 2014. Communication across cultures: Mutual understanding in a global world. Cambridge University Press.

Byres, E., and Lowe, J. 2014, October. The myths and facts behind cybersecurity risks for industrial control systems. In Proceedings of the VDE Kongress (Vol. 116, pp. 213-218).

Ericsson, G. N. 2010. Cybersecurity and power system communication—essential parts of smart grid infrastructure. IEEE Transactions on Power Delivery, 25(3), 1501-1507.

Fisher, D. 2011. Communication in organizations (pp. 228-9). St. Paul: West Publishing Company.

Greenberg, J., and Baron, R. A. 2013. Behavior in organizations: Understanding and managing the human side of work. Pearson College Division.

Garnham, N. 2013. The mass media, cultural identity, and the public sphere in the modern world. Public culture, 5(2), 251-265.

Gordon, L. A., and Loeb, M. P. 2016. Managing cybersecurity resources: a cost-benefit analysis (Vol. 1). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Huntemann, N., and Morgan, M. 2011. Mass media and identity development. Handbook of children and the media, 309-322.

Kietzmann, J. H., Hermkens, K., McCarthy, I. P., and Silvestre, B. S. 2011. Social media? Get serious! Understanding the functional building blocks of social media. Business Horizons, 54(3), 241-251.

Kraut, R. E., Fish, R. S., Root, R. W., and Chalfonte, B. L. 2010. Informal communication in organizations: Form, function, and technology. In Human reactions to technology: Claremont symposium on applied social psychology (pp. 145-199).

Leuthold, S. 2011. Indigenous Aesthetics: Native art, media, and identity. University of Texas Press.

Miller, G. A. 2014. Psychology, language, and levels of communication. Human communication: theoretical explorations, ed. by A. Silverstein, 1-17. New York: J.

Putnam, L., and Pacanowsky, M. E. 2013. Communication and organizations, an interpretive approach (Vol. 65). Sage Publications, Inc.

Schlesinger, P. R. 2015. Europeanisation and the media: National identity and the public   sphere. Arena.

Thomas, J. 2013. Cross-cultural pragmatic failure. Applied linguistics, 4(2), 91-112.

Von Solms, B., and Von Solms, R. 2015. From information security to… business security Computers and Security, 24(4), 271-273.

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