Many communities have differing opinions about the actual definition of free speech. Many promote it actively, while others prohibit it. In fact, free speech operates in a complex grey area depending on the local culture. However, the whole world has been united by a single entity, the Internet and this could result in clashes of ideas. It wasn’t long before the Internet make interaction very complex. The Internet isn’t only about selling and buying things, it is also about sharing information and discussing it. Despite being a very public space, the Internet could also become a very private environment where people can present themselves anonymously.
The Internet is a place where we can speak our mind and tell people about things that they really think. By making progressive interactions with many people, they can information more freely to others. There are no regulations and rules that can prevent people from expressing their mind, although many websites implement strict rules on discussing specific things and ban people who insist on doing it. Because it is a nightmare territory for countries who don’t want their people to express their mind freely, Internet access is heavily regulated and even forbidden in.
After people log onto the Internet, the physical borders between countries would simply disappear. Rules that governments set can no longer apply when their citizens interact in websites hosted in different countries, these include Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and various web forums. Because people can present themselves anonymously, they don’t need to be afraid about the local police forces raiding their homes. It would be quite hard for governments to implements censorships on things that their citizens aren’t allowed to see and discuss.
There are countries that prohibit citizens to know any information about the rest of the world and we could see very strict rules that they implement. External information can be kept and contained. For many years, we have been seeing countries that regulate any kind of information sharing between their citizens. In this case, the Internet should be considered as a tool of truth. Because of the Internet in its early form, many people are aware of things that happened in the Tiananmen Square in 1990, during the democracy protest.
During the invasion of Kuwait in 1991, information was spread through the IRC (Internet Relay Chat) right from the battlefield. Although it was only relatively simple text-based information, the link of communication stayed operations weeks after the TV and radio were cut out. Even in a free society, such as Western countries; the governments also decide things that should be transmitted through the media, including the Internet.
It should be noted that there’s no such a thing as absolute free of speech. We should still respect others’ religions and opinions. There are things that should be left unsaid, because absolute freedom could actually lead to anarchy and chaos, if orders are not enforced. In fact, the absolute free speech could actually prohibit free of speech itself, because some people could actually strongly oppose others who have different opinions.