How is the Internet reshaping what we mean by culture?

Essay by Dreamer01High School, 12th grade March 2007

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During the 20th century, electricity, the telephone, the automobile, and the airplane made the world more accessible to people and transforming our society in the process. Most people had to call their local bank to check their statements. Or wait for the paper invoice in the mail. The latest score for last night's hockey game were found in the local newspaper. Then came the accessible worldwide system of interconnected networks called the Internet. "The Internet is the publicly accessible worldwide system of interconnected computer networks that transmit data by packet switching using a standardized Internet Protocol (IP). It is made up of thousands of smaller commercial, academic, domestic, and government networks. It carries various information and services, such as electronic mail, online chat, and the interlinked Web pages and other documents of the World Wide Web." (Wikipedia). The Internet has changed the way we communicate, the way we learn and the way we trade.

Communication trends have changed in the past few years that no one would have predicted. It is evident that the Internet is reshaping our culture and changing the living habits of individuals, the structure of organizations, and society.

Less then a quarter of a century ago, the Internet was only used by a small group of scientist to conduct scientific research. At the time computers would only be found in information technology departments and research labs. Today it is safe to say that the majority of North Americans own a home computer with Internet access. With the Internet in regards to culture and the impact on individuals is quite fascinating. It seems anyone with a computer is tempted daily with opportunities that can be ethically questionable. A teenager for instance who would never shoplift can download music or movies off the Internet for no charge. Some...