In a society based upon “freedom of choice” and “freedom of expression”, you would think that internet censorship would be difficult to enact. The mere attempt of relinquishing privacy rights from individual citizens would rip the very fabric upon which this civilization was built. No one would stand for such an act of authoritarianism, would they? Absolutely not! With this in mind, if internet censorship was presented to the world as exactly what it is, internet censorship, it would not gain much traction. Unfortunately, the people who wish to establish it already know this, so they’ve wrapped it in shiny, “for your own good” paper. They achieve this through the philosophy of utilitarianism.
The Utilitarianism of Internet Censorship
Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill, the classical utilitarian philosophers, believed that when making choices that affect society, we should decide “the greatest amount of good for the greatest number”. In utilizing this philosophy, politicians realize there is no “greater good” than public safety. They realize that you will not accept infringements willingly unless it impedes upon the government’s duty to ‘protect’ you. Sadly, the political play for internet censorship has already been put into motion.
During the 2016 American elections, many voters were duped by phony news stories and accusations concerning each candidate. It is now believed that Russian spies funded fringe groups to imitate reputable news sources, creating and publishing fake news stories as propaganda against both sides of the electorate. Once the public was exposed to these fake stories, they shared them as fact, believing each was produced by a responsible news outlet. These types of actions were intended to influence the outcome of the 2016 election. This matter is now under Congressional investigation.
Internet Censorship in Social Media
On October 17, 2017, TechCrunch Network reported that Facebook had been collaborating with special counsel and Congress to help evaluate Russia’s use of their (Facebook’s) platform for U.S. politics. “Facebook” stated that it’s a priority for the company to “make sure that we build systems to prevent what happened from happening again.” Where do you think this is headed? What is Congress willing to take from you to “protect” you? Will it be internet censorship?
We Can’t Stand For Internet Censorship
We will not reach an acceptable outcome through government censorship. Success lies in individual verification, not in government overlap. What is needed is the ability for the individual to assure their network is trusted as well as the networks of his/her peers. A kind of verified armor carried from network to network ensuring safety and productivity.
To maintain a free internet, we cannot run to internet censorship like a lamb to slaughter. Instead, we need to establish crypto-internet armor to face the internet with freedom, privacy, and security. With the introduction of such a model that allows users to “up vote” or “down vote” their web content, it becomes peer-reviewed or peer monitored, leaving no need for government regulation.