Ten years ago, the Internet was practically unheard of by most people. Today, the Internet is one of the most powerful tools throughout the world. The Internet is a collection of various services and resources. The Internet’s main components are E-mail and the World Wide Web. Actually, there’s a lot more to the Internet than E-mail, search engines, celebrity websites, up-to-the-second sports scores, and chat rooms full of discussions. The Net also ranks as one of the today’s best business tools. Almost all households contain the Internet; however, before people connect to the Internet, they need to be aware of its disadvantages and advantages.
Many people fear the Internet because of its disadvantages. They claim to not use the Internet because they are afraid of the possible consequences or are simply not interested. People who have yet connected to the Internet claim they are not missing anything. Today’s technological society must realize that it is up to them to protect themselves on the Internet.
Children using the Internet have become a big concern. Most parents do not realize the dangers involved when their children connect to the Internet. When children are online, they can easily be lured into something dangerous. For example, children may receive pornography online by mistake; therefore, causing concern among parents everywhere. Whether surfing the Web, reading newsgroups, or using email, children can be exposed to the extremely inappropriate material. To keep children safe, parents and teachers must be aware of the dangers. They must actively guide and guard their children online. There are a number of tools available today that may help keep the Internet environment safer for children.
Musicians are also concerned with disadvantages to the Net such as accessibility and freedom. They are upset because the Internet provides their music online at no charge to consumers. File-sharing services, such as Napster, provide copyrighted songs to all Internet users. The main concern is the music is free! Musicians feel they are not getting paid for their work. Because of Napster, it is almost impossible to close down all file-sharing services because there are too many of them to count.
Another major disadvantage of the Internet is privacy. Electronic messages sent over the Internet can be easily tracked, revealing who is talking to whom and what they are talking about. As people surf the Internet, they are constantly giving information to websites. People should become aware that the collection, selling, or sharing of the information they provide online increases the chances that their information will fall into the wrong hands. When giving personal information on the Internet, people should make sure the Web site is protected with a recognizable security symbol. On the other hand, this does not mean they are fully protected because anyone may obtain a user’s information. In other words, the most common Internet crimes are frauds.
Today, not only humans getting viruses, but computers are also. Computers are mainly getting these viruses from the Internet, yet viruses may also be transferred through floppy disks. However, people should mainly be concerned about receiving viruses from the Internet. Some of these dangerous viruses destroy the computer’s entire hard drive, meaning that the user can no longer access the computer. Virus protection is highly recommended.
Despite all of the terrible disadvantages of the Internet, there are numerous advantages. In fact, the advantages weigh out the disadvantages. The most common thing the Internet is used for is research. Children and students are among the top people who use the Internet for research. Nowadays, it is almost required that students use the Internet for research. The Internet has become one of the biggest sources for research. Almost every day, research on medical issues becomes easier to locate. Web sites have become available for people to research diseases and talk to doctors online at sites such as America’s Doctor.
Entertainment is another popular reason why many people surf the Internet. Downloading games, going into chat rooms or just surfing the Web are some of the uses people have discovered. There are numerous games that may be downloaded from the Internet at no charge. Chat rooms are popular because users can meet new and interesting people. In fact, the Internet has been used by people to find life long partners. When people surf the Web, there are numerous things that can be found. Music, hobbies, news and more can be found on the Internet.
Another popular thing to do on the Internet is to check out the news. Almost all local news can be obtained through the Internet. Up to date sports scores are probably the most popular looked at the news. Sports scores are updated on the Internet as soon as the game ends. Weather is also a popular source to look up on the Internet. Using the Internet to get the weather allows people to view weather all over the world. Live radar all over the country and local forecasts are just to name a few of the things that may be obtained for weather information on the Internet.
Shopping online has also become a huge success and is considered a great advantage of the Internet. No matter what people are shopping for, it can be found on the Internet. People do not even have to leave their homes. A few companies have collected millions of dollars using the Internet for selling. Clothing is probably one of the most bought items online. Almost every major clothing store has it’s on a Web site. In fact, In US, people can even go grocery shopping online using such sites as Priceline.com. Just one click of the mouse on the items they want to purchase and the items are delivered to their front door. Unfortunately, this kind of service is not yet available in Malaysia for the time being. Groceries and clothing are only a few of the items that may be bought on the Internet.
In conclusion, today’s society is in the middle of a technological boom. People can either choose to take advantage of this era, or simply let it pass them by. The Internet is a very powerful tool. It has many advantages; however, people need to be extremely aware of the disadvantages as well.