Imagine that you are running late for work, you break your high heel; your little boy missed his bus and you spilled juice on your blouse. Realizing that same little boy needs money for a field trip, you drive through an ATM to grab money for him. Technology enables us to have a less chaotic lifestyle. Now imagine this same situation, but when looking for your ATM card, you realize someone has stolen it. Instead of convenience, technology is making your life more complicated and risks your chances of identity theft. Everyone may have different ways of using technology. Some may be old-fashion, limiting their dependence on technology, while others choose to take the risk, jeopardizing their welfare and safety.
To begin with, communication is essential and the basis of our society. Technology and electronics, such as the Internet, makes life easier for most people to correspond with one another.
The Internet has existed since World War II and has become an important asset of our culture. We went from using pencils, pens, and paper, to emailing and instant messaging in order to communicate with one another. According to Steven L. Clift in the reading "Putting Pen to Paper: Electronic Democracy, Write On!" he states that "It will only thrive and lead to improved democracies across the world if individuals and organizations come together to build shared online "civic participation centers"" (par. 5). In other words, the Internet, from this point on, can only improve and make businesses, the government, and people closer than they ever have been.
On the other hand, the Internet may also cause unsafe and/or obscene ways of showing its usefulness. It may be the most exciting tool available today, the majority
being the younger community, but what they see as "exciting" might be degrading
towards others of an older, more old-fashioned group of people. For example, one of the most mortifying uses of the Internet is pornography. It is no surprise that young people, mostly teenagers, view such demoralizing material. Parents are the first to disprove of pornography being legal and available to kids of all ages online. Even though some sites may be blocked, teenagers still find ways to maneuver around them, enabling them to download pornography onto their computers. This act usually causes pop-ups to occur, making it easier for the next time adolescents want to watch this material online. According to Buckley "Parents who care will of course encourage and patronize the blocking devices. But in the back of their minds they will know that this fight, on this front, is lost" (par. 7). Parents are wishful thinking in that the Internet and pornography will eventually change, but as long as the Internet is here to stay, the misfortunes that come along with it will remain as well.
Much in the same manner, who are the intelligent people that make the Internet the way it is today? In other words, the "Electronic Minds, a group of free-minded rebels, also known as Cyberpunks" are the set of individuals to dedicate their life working with computers and the technology world (Kirtchev, par. 1). These masterminds base their lives around the Internet, and live in a different and virtual world where no one else matters except those within their group. They are in a way helpful in our society because they're fighting for freedom. They're fighting for freedom of speech to be able to express whatever it is they want on the Internet. It is not just about the Internet however; it is about all technology. Technology is not based solely around computers, even though most technological devices are computerized. Kirtchev, explains both the negative and positive aspects and qualities of the Internet. He believes that if one is going to use the Internet, he should be able to have a voice on what is displayed on the Internet. Although, Kirtchev also believes that, "It is hard for a Cyberpunk to live in an Internet. Although, Kirtchev also believes that, "It is hard for a Cyberpunk to live in an underdeveloped world, looking the people around him, seeing how wrongly they develop" (par. 6). People who base their whole lives around the internet don't understand why those who don't refrain from taking advantage of it.
It is evident that over the past few decades technology of electronic communication has sufficiently improved the lives of many, but has also caused a decline in the freedoms of some. It has given us more privileges than most have ever expected, such as making it faster for people to travel, the convenience of contacting people, and the ability to withdrawal money. Others don't seem to take advantage of the benefits of having such advancements in our society, and putting it into effect in their every day lives. With advancements and a prosperous society come disadvantages as well as a loss of security. I never understood why my father preferred cash over credit cards, but now I look at him as a much wiser man for doing so. Technology is two-faced, just like a person; it can be charming yet cruel at the same time.
Kirtchev, Christian A. "A Cyberpunk Manifesto." Readings Online: A Virtual Common Place. Ed. Paul Amore. Houghton Mifflin. 22 Mar. 2005
http://college.hmco.com/english/amore/chapter7/ch7_r4.html>. 8 pars.
Clift, Steven L. "Putting Pen to Paper: Electronic Democracy, Write On!" Readings Online: A Virtual Common Place. Ed. Paul Amore. Houghton Mifflin. 22 Mar. 2005 http://college.hmco.com/english/amore/chapter7/ch7_r3.html>. 6 pars.
Buckley, William F. "Internet: The Lost Fight." Readings Online: A Virtual Common Place. Ed. Paul Amore. Houghton Mifflin. 22 Mar. 2005 http://college.hmco.com/english/amore/chapter6/ch6_r3.html>. 7 pars.