Internet censorship, manipulation and net neutrality

Internet censorship, manipulation and net neutrality


Internet manipulation refers to the co-optation of digital technology, such as social media algorithms and automated scripts, for commercial, social or political purposes. Such tactics may be employed with the explicit intent to manipulate public opinion, polarise citizens, silence political dissidents, harm corporate or political adversaries, and improve personal or brand reputation. Hackers, hired professionals and private citizens have all been reported to engage in internet manipulation using software − typically Internet bots such as social bots, votebots and clickbots. Cognitive hacking refers to a cyberattack that aims to change users’ perceptions and corresponding behaviors. Internet manipulation is sometimes also used to describe selective Internet censorship or violations of net neutrality. in a few words Network neutrality, or simply net neutrality, is the principle that Internet service providers (ISPs) must treat all Internet communications equally, and not discriminate or charge differently based on user, content, website, platform, application, type of equipment, source address, destination address, or method of communication. With net neutrality, ISPs may not intentionally block, slow down, or charge money for specific online content. Without net neutrality, ISPs may prioritize certain types of traffic, meter others, or potentially block traffic from specific services, while charging consumers for various tiers of service. Net neutrality does not block all abilities that Internet service providers have to impact their customers’ services. The extent of Internet censorship varies on a country-to-country basis. While most democratic countries have moderate Internet censorship, other countries go as far as to limit the access of information such as news and suppress discussion among citizens. Internet censorship also occurs in response to or in anticipation of events such as elections, protests, and riots. Other types of censorship include the use of copyrights, defamation, harassment, and obscene material claims as a way to suppress content. Government agencies have various tools to implement restrictions but supporters of internet freedom are trying to overcome such barriers and filters. Access to restricted sites was effectively blocked by tracing and blocking DNS requests but companies like Cloudflare, Mozilla and Google are shifting DNS to TLS layer and making it difficult to intercept. Support for and opposition to Internet censorship also varies. In a 2012 Internet Society survey 71% of respondents agreed that “censorship should exist in some form on the Internet”. In the same survey 83% agreed that “access to the Internet should be considered a basic human right” and 86% agreed that “freedom of expression should be guaranteed on the Internet”. What do you think of internet censorship? Write what’s up with censorship in your place. Take care!

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