The Internet

The Internet is a method of communication and a source of information that is becoming popular among those who are interested in the information highway. The problem with this world we know as Cyberspace, the Net, or the Web is that some of this information, including pornographical material and bad literature, is being accessible to minors.

One of the characteristics most important of the young Internet was its freedom. There were no official censors, no bosses, no board of directors. It's an open forum where anyone can say anything, and the only thing holding them back is their own conscience.

This lawless atmosphere bothered many people; many people feel the Internet should be censored by the Government. The Government owns and operates the Internet and its agencies are responsible for what is on the Internet. However, for the parents with minors those are concerned about what their kids see, they should go out and get software to censor the Internet.

Anyone who watches the news or reads newspapers knows that the courts frequently hold that government can legitimately try to protect the well-being of children. At the same time, how parents rear their children has generally been left to the parents. But it seems fair to say that few parents, would agree that the government should intercede in how they raise their own children. In general, parents have access to a wider variety of Internet access controls than controls over cable television or the movies. Additionally, most children who live in environments in which their parent slack access to Internet protection likely also lack the resources to acquire computer technology and Internet access.

We have the technology today to filter access to users on interactive media. One simple way to is to put information in the header describing the information that is contained in the transmission. There would be standards for how the information would be described. The application used to receive the transmission can be set to screen the unwanted transmission based on the information in the header. The settings can be protected by passwords. Using this technology the user would exercise control of the information available on interactive media instead of the government or network operators.

The commercial television airwaves flow almost inexorably into everyone's home, with little more effort than the flick of a dial. The Internet is something that most of us must buy access to and which we then choose to surf on our own. And does the government really have the right to tell parents what books and magazines they can let their children read at home or what television programs or movies they should let their children watch?. "Indecent," whatever that means must surely be something less offensive than "obscenity." Is it just, fair or even wise to penalize someone from making available information which some would label "indecent" but which few of us can even define?