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ICT 331 Ethics Assignment
ICT here stands for Information and communication technology, It is a collection of various forms of information and communication would be Print media, Television, telecommunication and Internet. Among this internet is as on date the fastest and most widely spread technology for Mass and well as individual information system (Boehlefeld, 1996). In this article the author shall discuss the ethic related issue of “Misuse of information that Internet has”. Internet has heaps of information on anything one wish to know. Although it is majorly helpful but it’s positive only until it is used for the purpose of increasing knowledge. In this article the author shall discuss the context and details till which the information on any topic is available on the internet, the benefits this fastest mode of communication has as far as the information available is concerned, the losses this easy availability of information on every topic has and the authors view on or against this convenience (Freeman& Peace, 2004).
In general, ethics is a moral philosophy where a person makes a specific moral choice and sticks to it. Internet ethics is nothing but the moral issues which a person should keep in his mind while he is using internet. There are various ethical issues that information and communication technology brings in. The various forms of information and communication technology are - Print Media (Newspapers, magazines and periodicals), television, Internet and telecommunication (Elizabeth, 2010). With their benefits of bringing in aware ness amongst people, it also has its cons when these media are not used ethically. Various ethics related issues it carries can be commercialization and hence modifying the reality and displaying it, use of these media for incorrect purposes like spreading rumours. Some of the ethics which should be followed while using the net are
- Never to use abusive and profane language while chatting, on email or blogging.
- You should avoid talking with strangers on internet and sharing the information about self or others to a stranger.
- Some of the information present on net has a copyright issue associated with it, it should never be overlooked. All reproduction should be properly cited and where ever need permission should be sought from the author.
- Hacking or accessing someone else’s personal information or password is highly unethical and illegal. This is a part of cyber security law as well (Freeman& Peace, 2004).
- Avoid displaying pornography information or pictures which can be potentially abusive, insensitive or contain inappropriate content.
Description of scenario
In this essay the author intends to discuss the benefits and misuse of the information available on the internet that currently exist. As already know each and every thing about any topic that one wants to know about, is available on the internet at a distance of one click and a matter of seconds. Not only that it’s not just the availability of information, it’s about the availability of this information covering every detail. On one hand it’s a very positive thing that increasing knowledge management about any topic or anything is so convenient but on the other hand its drawback is the misuse of this information (Johns, Chen& Hall, 2004). Apart from this, what also gets at stake is the privacy part when this information is on topics about national affairs or for that matter someone’s personal lives. What also stands true is the fact that partial knowledge of anything stands to be a dangerous thing. Here if the information is not taken in detail about a critical thing, it can lead to disastrous perceptions and results as internet is a self-help tool.
Nowadays internet is emerging as the major source of all information. A person can watch TV, do surfing, read articles, journals or newspaper, communicate and any other information he needs at a given point of time. Sites like Google, Wikipedia etc. are helping people around the world to find information they are looking for. The best part of this information is that a person can access it anytime and anyplace where he finds a network (Johns, Chen& Hall, 2004). He doesn’t needs to carry books or other old time data with him to read or write. He could access the information with the help of his mobile itself. Some of the major advantages of information available on internet are
- Information is easily accessible.
- Information could transfer easily and could be accessed in any part of world.
- Unlimited amount of data could be uploaded or accessed at any point of time.
- One doesn’t have to carry books or other material with him, all the information could be stored on internet.
- Information available is much more than basic detailing which sometimes helps in understanding things better.
- Information related to engineering, medical science, history, physics or names any subject, all information is present on internet (Melanie, 2005).
- Research documents, articles journals, online books, video same information is sometime described in a much easier way which helps in understanding things better.
- A person could learn languages, cultural behaviour, ethics, law etc. of the country he is interested to learn or will be travelling there in short term.
- Information available on internet is very cost effective.
- Information once save will remain in the system forever and could be referred after decades.
Information available on internet could be used for both good and bad purpose. Since there is no limit of information a person could use this information for bad purpose too. There are many people around the world who don’t follow the basic ethics of internet and use the information available to harm other people (Thelwall, 2010). In recent times more and more cases are seen where the information shared or used from internet is used as a weapon to harm people of other country or religion. Some of the major disadvantage of information available on internet is:
- Since Information is available to all and there is no particular capping on it, sometimes the people don’t follow the ethics and use this information to create problems for other users.
- Information available on net is nowadays is also getting used for planning and executing terrorist attack (Melanie, 2005).
- It can be used as a weapon to harm image of other country/person/public figure/project etc.
- Since the information can be communicated within no time, sometimes the information on sensitive issues can trigger violence in other part of the country.
- In official websites, blogs etc Information is controlled by the people having powers and they could modify any information as per their benefits (Marga, 2004).
- Intelligent programmers or hackers can use this information to cheat others by accessing their personal and privileged information.
Major issues faced by world in current time are what information should be shared on internet and what not. Since the user of information is mainly an individual user it completely depends on his moral ethics that in which sense he is using the information (Jakobsson, Johnson & Finn, 2008). If a person is having an intention of harming others or involved in terror related activities he could find the information related to him without using the internet too. The only difference is he would find internet as an easy source of doing it. As per the data, the information present on net is having more benefits than its counter parts, but the harm done using the information in bad ways has also a considerable effect. This is an issue on which different people have different opinions but considering the overall effect information present on net is definitely helpful in large prospective (Melanie, 2005).
Discussion and Recommendation
Majorly everything made by human beings in this world have some advantage and disadvantages associated with it. Same is the case of internet and the information present on it. As per the author, Information present on internet is more advantageous for a person who is looking to collect any information. It changed the way of collecting data, understanding a topic, availability of data, sharing of data etc. The most important benefit of internet is the fact that it has made it lot more easily for a person to go through any information that may not be done using any other source (Melanie, 2005). It’s a library having unlimited amount of knowledge with the benefit of easy search of relevant topic to the point. As per author, to avoid the disadvantages of information present on internet more tough regulations should be in place. Even though there are cyber laws present but still they need to be reviewed at a regular time interval so that a proper action could be taken against people who are involved mischievous activities. The areas which are more active in terrorist activities shouldn’t be allowed to access sites like Google map, twitter or Facebook which they could use for terrorist activities. If a person is found guilty for something his access should be revoked from the site. This tough decision will definitely reduce the ethics related issues.
With the detailing of facts and figures with the advantages and disadvantages this form of information and communication technology has, the author strongly is in favour of this technology called internet. Ethics and abiding by it are personal perception and belief of user and existence of a specific technology or its nonexistence can in no form change the ethical belief of an individual(Elizabeth, 2010). Just like everything comes with its pros and cons so comes this information and communication technology called internet. With its wide spread use continuing like before the author recommends just a stricter check on the telecast of the topics and information available along with putting up security checks at accessibility of sensitive information.
Boehlefeld, S. (1996). Doing the Right Thing: Ethical Cyber Research. The Information Society,pp.15-25.
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Melanie, S. (2005)CyberEthics and Internet Downloads: An Age by Age Guide to Teaching Children what they need to know pp. 9-18
Marga, A. (2004). "University Reforms in Europe: Some Ethical Considerations," Higher Education in Europe pp. 32–82.
Thelwall, M. (2010). Researching the public web. e-Research Ethics, Excerpt: "A simple but strong argument for researching published information on the public web without consent is that the object investigated is the publication and not the person."pp. 7-10.
Mascarenhas-Keyes , S. (2008). Ethical dilemmas in professional practice in anthropology.
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