Thursday, May 15, 2014

Jasper Cruz - Reaction Paper

Jasper A. Cruz
May 15, 2014                                                                                                            
Reaction Paper # 3
STS – Prof. J. Sonido

Reaction Paper: On ICTs and Internet Freedom
In a highly digitalized and modernized era, it is inevitable for one to explore and expand his/her horizons. Often, one would challenge the norms to further express himself/herself. He/she would sign-up to social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram even though he/she does not necessarily agree with their terms and conditions. However, what can a person who wants to join the bandwagon in a fast-paced world do but agree.
                Last May 15, 2014, Ms. Liza Garcia from the Foundation for Media Alternatives (FMA) talked about Information and Communication Technologies and Ms. Nica Dumalo also from FMA discussed the Philippine Fight for Internet Freedom.
                Both talks boil down to our rights as internet users. It was said that social networking sites has always been our avenues for venting out our anger against a particular person, group or system. Although we need to provide certain information about ourselves and we have to “conform” to its terms and conditions, we, as an average citizen cannot do anything but agree because these sites allow us to express ourselves further, the way we want to, the way that we cannot do outside the cyberspace. Further, these social networking sites offer a cloth of anonymity through its privacy settings which can filter the people who see your posts. Such makes the environment more suitable for one to rant and vent out.
                It seems that there is a utopia for freedom of expression.
                But there is our government who wants to regulate our use of the internet. In the Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, it seems that the government has listed a myriad of don’ts and only a few dos. What our government should have done is that they should just properly educate its citizens on how to use the internet “morally”. They should have provided us a list of the no-no’s and inform us of their repercussions. It is not that we don’t need a cybercrime law; perhaps it is just not the cybercrime law that best suits our society.
                Given all these, we just have to realize one thing as well. On our end, we also have to be responsible in using the internet and these social networking sites. We should always remember that when we talk of freedom, we also talk of the responsibilities that go with it. We may have been blessed with such freedom but we need to know how to use it “properly” and “wisely” and not to abuse it.

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