Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Ek Hern's expository writing


        The Internet has enhanced our lives in many ways. We can now communicate face-to-face from opposite ends of the earth and watch a Chinese video in America. However, this is a case of ‘solve one problem, create another’. It is needless then, to say that the increased access to the Internet has caused as many problems as it has solved.

For a start, the Internet has greatly increased our amount and depth of knowledge. Informational sites like Wikipedia and other institute websites provide useful data. However, people can also ‘modify’ the information. Wikipedia is a community based information site which means that anyone looking to be destructive can simply edit the information to his/her will. This could damage a person’s feelings or rouse false rumors about that person. Overall, one needs to use the internet correctly. Terrorists learned how to make bombs from the internet. However, one could also use it to find a place to go for a date.

Entertainment is another area effected by the internet. The rise of Youtube now means original content can be broadcasted to the masses. However, there will be people looking to benefit from this. They will ‘borrow’ other people’s content claiming it as their own. Audiences are now more easily reached. Fans of different genres can find people with a common interest easily. This also means all interests are accounted for. ‘Forever alone no more’ as the 9gag slogan goes. This, however, also creates a problem. Adult content like pornography is readily available on the internet. Pornographic sites account for a higher percentage of the internet now. This also makes it tougher for parents to control their children and protect them from these ‘sins of the devil’.

Ethics on the internet is also a hot potato. Ranting online is a large debate. Amy Cheong is one of the cases in which she got fired due to her rant online about Malay weddings. However, some people believe that online ranting is okay and should be allowed. Copyright, as mentioned above, has also become a large issue. Many content creators are reluctant to show their content online for fear of it being getting stolen. There are even websites like The Pirate Bay dedicated to pirated content. Respect online is another big issue. People like Anton KC (People who take the MRT are poor) who pass these sorts of offensive remarks receive harsh reparations and punishments. Racism online in Singapore also results in a prison sentence.

Overall, we are facing as many problems as we had before the Internet came out. In the end, the crux is really the intentions of the user and what he/she plans to do with it.

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