Summary The internet has strongly help to revolutionize the world, as people are able to more easily communicate with one another. However, the end user may utilize the information available on the internet for reasonable purposes and frequently it is seen that illegal acts performed with relation to the work, which raises the question of abuse of the ethical standards over the internet. Technology and the doctrine of ‘peer-to-peer sharing’ have better enabled misuse of information present on the internet. Several ethical issues such as autonomy, beneficence non-maleficence and justice may not be respected when it comes to using the internet.
Even having a regulatory authority for the internet may be difficult. In such a situation, self-regulation and use of appropriate technology that does not permit unauthorized copying plays an important role in developing and further maintaining the ethical standards of the internet. Further, several organizations should be involved in improving the ethical standards of the internet including the public. Introduction The internet has developed as a revolution in social communications throughout the world. There require being a thorough reshaping of the understanding people have about themselves and others.
The internet has turned out to be a technological innovation, changing the lives of people throughout the world. Information can be sent across the internet, and these can have positive and negative implications. As an information technology and communications tool, the internet has profound consequences:- • Impact on the moral, social and psychological development of people (many people across several cultures consider that the internet to be questionable for children to access) • Architecture and functioning of the society • Communications between various cultures
• Perceptions and transmission of world views, ideas, religious beliefs, values, etc (Foley, 2002 & Roland, 2000). Today the earth is more of a globe interconnected through wires and satellite transmission that is humming in the space of silence. One of the main questions looming at large of the internet is whether this intercommunication tool is in fact contributing towards human development and is helping people to reach their magnificent destiny. Throughout the short history, the internet is in a constant state of flux and technical image.
The future of the internet also seems to suggest great amount of change. Whenever any ethical framework is constructed for the internet, flexibility is an important criteria which needs to be considered. The internet ethical policy needs to be flexible to the users. However, there are also other issues which need to be taken into consideration which include privacy, confidentiality, consent, etc. One of the important issues with regards to the internet is the presence of several open source material which can be very valuable to researchers who would be doing their research using material from the internet.
However, equally important is the misuse of ideas and copyrights. Open source material present on the internet would definitely help the researcher searching for data on a particular topic. However, the user can only make use of this material to particular extent and not steal the material present in the open source. It may also be very difficult to apply the concept of privacy to the internet. Earlier the internet excited researchers a lot as it was a database containing very valuable and useful resources in any discipline.
However, using low-cost equipment, the material present on the internet can be easily reproduced and converted into other forms (Foley, 2002 & Berry, 2004). In this paper, we would be taking a look at the value and the quality of information available on the internet, and the extent to which ethical principles can be applied to protect information and prevent abuse. Also certain measures would be suggested to help improve the ethical standards of the internet. Body (Content and Observations) Information is available to people over the internet on any topic and area.
The information is available to the user in the form of files. The user can access this information using the web link. Further the information can be downloaded and stored on the system of the user. One important observation made of the information present on the internet is that when it is accessed people consider that it is present in the public domain and hence can do whatever they like with the information. Hence, the information available can be subjected to abuse and misuse. Users would be making multiple copies of this information.
Information can remain on the internet perpetually, and it is not required that the owner repeatedly get on the internet to maintain the information. Another major problem is the application of copyright to the internet. Many people feel that the open source movements and the Napsterficiation issues have permitted users to make unlimited copies of the data and further distribute the information. Users are able to further publish any information that is available on the internet, without any concern for ethical issues. No consideration is given to principles of autonomy, beneficence, non-malfeasance and justice.