The Internet and Society
Computers were once just a means to solve mathematical equations. Rapid advances in technology have altered the way in which people interact with computers, as well as the functionality of these smart machines. With the advent of a worldwide and nearly universally accessible Internet, the way in which we interact with each other has changed drastically. People from all over the world can instantaneously exchange both business and personal information. Internet commerce has become a huge part of the daily lives of millions, as well as social networking and streaming media. Most recently, portable electronics capable of nearly all internet-related tasks have become a common possession for the average middle-aged American. The unlimited free exchange of information has changed, and is continuing to change, in a profound way, society at large. “The internet is probably most famous for the ability to spread information, fact or fiction”(Nikolovska, 2007). Despite the many positive influences the Internet has had on our society, one cannot ignore the negative repercussions. Many vendors have become faceless, and the examination of goods prior to purchase has been reduced to pictures. While there are many reputable online stores, there are those with less ethical aims. People must be wary of any and all information sharing and purchases conducted online to avoid the transfer of funds or personal data to unscrupulous entities. Likewise, information obtained via the internet needs to be scrutinized in order to determine accuracy. According to the 2010 U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Annual Report on Intellectual Property Enforcement “The digital environment… presents enormous challenges to businesses, consumers, governments, citizens, communities, and families, particularly as new technologies and platforms disrupt traditional business models, means of governance and modes of private communication and expression.” In essence,...
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