The Impact of the Internet on Globalization
Globalization, a growing phenomenon that can be described as a “shift toward a more integrated and interdependent world economy” (Hill 7), has been the subject of many books and discussions for the past decade. Along with the development of microprocessors, the Internet is perhaps the most significant technological innovation of our time, playing a substantial role in the growth of globalization. The Internet facilitated the expansion of the movement toward a global village through the creation of cheaper, faster and easier means of communication, the provision of a vast pool of information, and the expansion of e-commerce.
The Internet provides a cheaper, faster and easier method of communication, an alternative that has created a “global audience”, as mentioned by Renato Ruggiero, director general of the World Trade Organization. In assessing the cost of long distance phone calls versus that of online voice chat sessions, the Internet is much more affordable and also superior in quality. Many web users now possess web cameras, microphones, and all the software necessary to support this hardware. This allows users to speak, see, and be seen by the person they are having a conversation with. People from Asia can carry conversations with Europeans, Americans or Africans at the same time, at no extra cost on Msn Messenger, Yahoo Messenger, or MIRC. Communication is also faster online. An e-mail is sent and received by the other party in seconds, as opposed to regular mail, which may take months to reach its destination when sent over the ocean. Thus, people all over the world can stay in touch on a regular basis, communicate online everyday and even share files. When factoring in the ease of use of the Internet, it is easy to see why so many individuals prefer communicating this way. All that is required is typing, a skill easily mastered through repeated use of the keyboard. Also, the Internet provides an...
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