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Angel
 
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Quote Angel Replybullet Topic: Internet access to be a fundamental right
    Posted: 04 June 2010 at 8:36pm

Calls for internet access to be enshrined as a fundamental right

CONRAD WALTERS

May 30, 2010
 

Internet use has become so woven into everyday life that some technology experts say online access should be legally protected, even to the point of considering it a human right.

''It's a social inclusion question,'' said Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre executive director David Vaile, who is alarmed film and music companies have sought to require internet service providers to disconnect individual accounts over unproven piracy allegations.

Mr Vaile said removing online access would potentially disenfranchise people from society. Australian copyright provisions allowing ''fair use'' were substantially less forgiving than US laws and threatened consumers here with losing their online access.

''The number of people who could be chucked off like this is quite huge,'' Mr Vaile said.

Almost two-thirds of Australian homes - more than 5 million households - now have broadband access, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The federal government wants to expand this access via the planned $43 billion national broadband network, which aims to connect 90 per cent of Australian homes to a high-speed network of 100 megabits per second. The rest would be connected using wireless and satellite technologies.

The call to safeguard online access is not without precedent. In France and Greece, consumers have a legal right to internet access. In Finland and Estonia, it has been enshrined as a human right. Earlier this year, the BBC commissioned a GlobeScan survey of more than 27,000 people in 26 countries that found 79 per cent of adults regarded online access as a fundamental right.

Internet community activist Brett Solomon, the former head of GetUp! and now executive director of AccessNow.org in the US, backed Mr Vaile's call to safeguard online access.

''Access to the internet is both a gateway to other rights and a right unto itself,'' Mr Solomon said, describing it as ''essential to the enjoyment of one's basic human rights''. He said online access was central to freedom of expression. ''Without access citizens cannot fully participate in modern democracy,'' he said.

Australian Human Rights Commission president Catherine Branson, QC, said the commission had not yet looked at internet access as a human right. But it did recognise internet access may raise issues ''relevant to the right to freedom of expression'' as defined in a United Nations covenant on civil and political rights.

Source: The Sydney Morning Herald

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Matt Browne
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Quote Matt Browne Replybullet Posted: 08 June 2010 at 7:25am
I agree. Everyone should have Internet access.

A religion that's intolerant of other religions can't be the world's best religion --Abdel Samad
Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people--Eleanor Roosevelt
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alexander38sing
 
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Quote alexander38sing Replybullet Posted: 02 November 2010 at 2:16am
In the world many people used internet because it gives various information in a seconds.
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schmikbob
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Quote schmikbob Replybullet Posted: 03 November 2010 at 2:28pm
Internet access is no more a human right than cell phone useage and ownership or car ownership
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chris1999
 
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Quote chris1999 Replybullet Posted: 30 December 2010 at 1:52pm
I agree. while useful and helpful in all sorts of scenarios. internet access isnt a human right. Those should be reserved for things that actually do matter, like mutual respect, peace, etc
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muhammadali3b
 
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Quote muhammadali3b Replybullet Posted: 06 January 2011 at 3:03am
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and I will say it shoud be mandatory (like in the USA constitution) to have it as a basic human right.
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Gibbs
 
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Quote Gibbs Replybullet Posted: 07 January 2011 at 10:59am

I disagree.....And I believe me and bob are on the same page...Internet is a priviledge, not a right just like having a driver's licese is a priviledge, not a right. If we say human right then we go into the discussion whether when viewing the internet should we have the right to look at naked children? Pedophilia is against the law and looking, and saving images of naked children is not socially wrong but its illegal.

 
When referring to "human rights" I believe the focus should be on, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (logical happiness). Human rights refer to things that are naturally established. We can live withou the internet, what we cannot live without is liberty since being captive is not a fulfilling life and thus inevitably we die in that condition. Living without internet we may become informationless, but we still can live, besides there is always the news paper!
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schmikbob
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Quote schmikbob Replybullet Posted: 08 January 2011 at 9:57pm
What about FOX news?  I think access to FOX news should be a fundamental right.  I feel disenfranchised if I don't get to watch it.
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