These days the internet has become an essential part to living for almost everyone but one of the controversial topics that people bring up is that whether or not the government should regulate information on the internet. Both sides have valid points which form a reasonable argument. Some people would say that they need to because of the dangers lurking around in the cyber world but the reasons for why the government shouldn’t regulate the Internet outnumber the reasons for why they should. The federal government should not regulate or censor information on the internet because doing so violates the first amendment and citizen’s right to privacy, degrades the educational value of the web, prevents the promotion and facilitation of innovation and technology and it would promote civil unrest.
First of all, if the Internet was regulated by the government, this would violate the first amendment and the citizen’s right to privacy (Parrish). More than 55 percent of U.S citizens agree with the fact that the federal government should not regulate the Internet (Wark). One of the main rights granted to Americans was the right to free speech and freedom of the press. Censoring the Internet would go in direct violation of this amendment. It would also take away the citizen’s right to privacy. Censoring would mean that the government is in some way controlling the people which would rid of them their privacy rights. It is mainly used in some sort of dictatorship. The federal government regulating or censoring the internet would decrease the value of democracy in our country. Also, the people have the right to know specific information. Censoring the internet would mean that the government would be keeping information away from the citizens of America. This evidently violates the citizen’s rights of privacy. With the government censoring and regulating the internet, the citizens of this country would have no privacy to do what they needed to do.
As a result of robbing the rights of the citizens, the people have started different projects and petitions in order to stop this internet censorship. In 2011, several people started a “Don’t Filter Me project.” They wanted to remove the web filters on the school computers that blocked several educational sites. They filed lawsuits and demanded that they unblock these sites and take away the web filters. Also another group of people petitioned the Supreme Court to strike down the Communications Decency Act in Reno v. ACLU in 1997. As a result, the court granted the “highest level of First Amendment protection to the internet.” Also in 2004, the Supreme Court “announced that it will not hear government’s appeal of a ban on the Child Online Protection Act.” They thought of this as a violation of the First Amendment (Internet Censorship 1).
Once again, it would be common sense to allow someone their first amendment and privacy rights. Without these rights, the people would never be able to truly express their ideas...