My internet manifesto


Friends,

Despite advances in technology, we seem to be living in a world where freedom of expression, more so in online forums seems to be taking a backseat. Increasingly we notice and hear of more than a few instances where our online brethren seem to be scared to freely express their views on any topics.

Two examples which stand out in my mind are the arrest of two college students when one of them posted a relatively harmless Facebook status message regarding the complete shutdown of a city following a prominent political leader’s death or the issue of Rs 500 cr lawsuits on a blogger working with a leading computer systems manufacturer following his blog post relating to the fraudulent practices followed by an institute which ‘dared us to dream beyond the IIMs’.

And these are just two local home-grown instances where freedom of expression has been stifled due to fundamentalist political ideologies and commercial considerations. I am sure that if we dig deep enough, we will unearth more such instances where people have been put into unnecessary trouble simply for speaking out their mind and putting it up on an online forum.

It is quite a well known fact that the founders of the internet had information sharing as the primary objective when they decided to hook up more than a few systems to each other. Full credit to all the entrepreneurs and visionaries in this field that followed them that harnessed the complete potential of an interconnected world and broke down almost all the boundaries that existed between the various corners of the world. It therefore follows that anything that prevents individuals across the world from expressing their views freely and without fear on the internet simply defeats the entire purpose of why it was created and envisaged in the first place.

Thus, my friends, ensuring complete and uninhibited freedom of expression would be the one manifesto item on which my candidature for the Prime Minister of the Internet would be based on.

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This post has been written for Project 365: A post a day where the intention is to publish at least one post a day based on the prompts provided. Today’s prompt was to present my manifesto if I would contest for the post of the Prime Minister of the Internet.

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