Violation of Freedom of Speech on the Internet: Opinion Essay

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This essay is to address the concern over the debate about policing free speech, which has intensified as 8chan, a popular forum website, struggles to stay online on being unconstitutional, violating the First Amendment right of freedom of speech and freedom of having personal property, that being in the form of data, violating the rights of all of those that utilize the Internet and the businesses that offer their services on the Internet, which should be protected by the Constitution under the First Amendment of freedom of speech.

This news article is discussing whether to restrict or allow companies to restrict freedom of speech on the Internet. The message board platform 8chan faces a shutdown as its hosts and providers are backing out of supporting it because it housed the manifesto of the person who shot up at an El Paso Walmart. Senator Elizabeth Warren stated that she does not believe in government intervention as that would be breaking the rights of the people, and at the same time, the safety of the people comes to mind as well. Personally, I think that freedom of speech should not be infringed upon and that violating the freedom of speech will not do anything for protecting people and will only pave the way for further governmental censorship.

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Besides the infringement of freedom of speech, there is another flaw in the plan to shut down 8chan. Often on the Internet, when censorship bans take place, it only causes the users to migrate to another platform on which they can express their beliefs. As Ali Breland of Mother Jones states, “But on the Internet, shutting down one community likely means that at least some of its members will easily go to another one that’s often more extreme than the place they just left, perhaps without anyone noticing”. This is proven by the fact that 8chan itself was created as an alternative to the more renowned 4chan.

While shutting down the website completely and abruptly is an infringement on the First Amendment right of freedom of speech, anyone should agree that something needs to be done about the toxic community that would promote acts of domestic terrorism on the website. As said by Brianna Wu, “If you want to stop future mass shootings planned on #8chan, the course of action is very simple. Get a warrant, and START PROSECUTING all the blatantly illegal actions taken there. It is a crime to post stolen credit card information. It is a crime to host child pornography”. I believe that law enforcement or the website should have the right to reprimand anyone who posts or encourages posts containing illegal content such as the aforementioned manifesto as it’s abetting a crime.

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Violation of Freedom of Speech on the Internet: Opinion Essay. (2023, November 21). Edubirdie. Retrieved April 15, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/violation-of-freedom-of-speech-on-the-internet-opinion-essay/
“Violation of Freedom of Speech on the Internet: Opinion Essay.” Edubirdie, 21 Nov. 2023, edubirdie.com/examples/violation-of-freedom-of-speech-on-the-internet-opinion-essay/
Violation of Freedom of Speech on the Internet: Opinion Essay. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/violation-of-freedom-of-speech-on-the-internet-opinion-essay/> [Accessed 15 Apr. 2024].
Violation of Freedom of Speech on the Internet: Opinion Essay [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2023 Nov 21 [cited 2024 Apr 15]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/violation-of-freedom-of-speech-on-the-internet-opinion-essay/
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