With the proliferation of dangerous fake news and Russian propaganda on the internet starting to cause adverse real world consequences – it is high time that sensible internet regulation is enacted globally. Not only is fake news causing dangerous outcomes but cyber-bullying has also increased in intensity to where it is no longer just a nuisance but a pandemic of immense proportions – precipitating massive suffering, including hundreds of suicides.
Sensible regulation must legislate against all forms of internet abuse – anyone who contravenes this new ordinance must face punishment in proportion to the damage that their infraction has the potential to cause.
A good place to look to see the many societal benefits of good internet regulation is China. Unlike in the West where the internet is a cesspool of lies and hate-speech – in China, internet regulation is more extensive and more advanced than in any other country in the world. The governmental authorities not only block website content but also monitor the internet access of individuals. This has proven to keep people safe and prevent hateful fake news from causing societal discord.
The Chinese authorities are also implementing a world leading, internet based, social credit rating system. This progressive new system will assign every citizen a score – based partly on real world behavior, with internet behavior being the larger component of the social credit score. The better ones score is, the more government services one will be able to access. A high score will also make obtaining things like a bank loan easier. Internet creeps and trolls will think twice before cyber-bullying innocent victims – when they know that they are unlikely to receive future accommodation or healthcare once their score drops below a certain threshold.
With innovative and sensible internet social policy, it is no wonder that China is pulling ahead of the West both in productivity and social harmony. Our goal of an inclusive global society is being hamstrung by outdated right wing ideas about freedom of speech. Freedom of speech must not protect hate-speech and it must not allow subversives to poison the minds of the people with destructive and dishonest fake news.
It is time to join with China and realize world-wide sensible internet regulation – the well being of the global community demands it.