The use of internet is growing, and with it censorship, harassment and fake news


       
Los Angeles, 13 April, 2018 - 13:26 (META) 

A lot of people have become more aware of the real impact of the Internet on our societies, economies and personal well-being, i.e. they are conscious of the fact that “how healthy the Internet is” is not only a technical issue but also a “human”, the “Internet Health Report 2018” says, prepared by the Mozilla Foundation.

According to the report, it is not easy to give a short answer to the question of the state of the Internet and its users, but it also points out it has been improving in three categories: access, availability, encryption.

On the contrary, the situation has worsened in terms of censorship, online harassment and the use of electricity.

The report “Internet Health Report 2018” has five categories: privacy and security, openness, digital inclusion, web literacy and decentralization. According to the writers, over the past year, the biggest reasons concerning “health” on the Internet are the security of the Internet, the fake news and the biggest IT players.

In the section regarding fake news, an example illustrating this phenomenon is the experience of the team from the Macedonian Internet and Society Foundation “Metamorphosis”, which since 2012, with the support of USAID, has established the Media Testing Service.

Regarding the fake news, in addition to the “current” topics for Russia and the US elections in 2016, it is noted that misinformation of social media is a topic that worries the whole world.

At the same time it is anticipated that by 2020, as many as 30 billion different devices will be online, which can be abused by malicious people or firms. Overcoming the danger will mean repairing bad software, hardware, and usage practices.

The first in the “unhealthy” areas is the category of openness and data, i.e. the blocking the access to social media and communication applications for a huge part of the world’s population. This is the case in China, Russia, India, Turkey, Iran, Ukraine, Egypt, Brazil and Sudan.

It is said regarding digital inclusion, while media companies become more aware of online harassment, the situation becomes critical. However, many big players started using artificial intelligence, but the report says, sometimes it does block the free speech.

The list of negative characteristics also includes the increasing use of electricity related to internet activities.