010 the internet
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The Internet a) Its characteristic and history The Federal Networking Council (FNC) agrees that the following language reflects our definition of the term 'Internet'. 'Internet' refers to the global information system that -- (i) is logically linked together by a globally unique address space based on the Internet Protocol (IP) or its subsequent extensions/follow-ons; (ii) is able to support communications using the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) suite or its subsequent extensions/follow-ons, and/or other IP-compatible protocols; and (iii) provides, uses or makes accessible, either publicly or privately, high level services layered on the communications and related infrastructure described herein. (Unanimous resolution, Federal Networking Council, October 24, 1995) The Internet (also known simply as the Net) is the worldwide, publicly accessible[w] system of interconnected computer networks that transmit data by packet switching using the standard Internet Protocol (IP). It consists of millions of smaller business, academic, domestic, and government networks, which together carry various information and services, such as electronic mail, online chat, and the interlinked Web pages and other documents of the World Wide Web. Contrary to[w] some common usage, the Internet and the World Wide Web are not synonymous: the Internet is a collection of interconnected computer networks, linked by copper wires[w], fiber-optic cables, wireless connections etc.; the Web is a collection of interconnected documents, linked by hyperlinks and URLs, and is accessible[w] using the Internet. The Internet also provides many other services including e-mail, file sharing and others described below. b) Internet censorship Internet censorship is control or suppression[w] of material an individual can publish or access on the Internet. The legal issues are similar to offline censorship. One difference is that national borders are more permeable[w] online: residents of a country that bans[w] certain information can find it on websites hosted elsewhere. Conversely, attempts[w] by one government to prevent its citizens from seeing certain material can have the effect of restricting foreigners, because the government may take action against Internet sites anywhere in the world, if they host objectionable material. Total censorship of information on the Internet, however, is very difficult (or impossible) to achieve due to the underlying distributed technology of the internet. Pseudonymity and data havens (such as Freenet) allow unconditional free speech, as the technology guarantees that material cannot be removed and the author of any information is impossible to link to a physical identity or organization. Censorship by governments The majority of Internet access in Muslim countries is through government-controlled proxy servers that blocks access to sites that are considered[w] to be 'immoral'. This can include not only directly pornographic websites but also certain chat forums discussing any issues of sexuality, controversial blogging hosts, sites showing nudity of any description, as well as politically sensitive or controversial topics, such as websites that compare Islam to other religions, or websites about other religions other than Islam. Copies of pages are reviewed and eventually blocked when they do not meet set criteria. Examples include: -The People's Republic of China has set up systems for Internet censorship that are collectively known as the Great Firewall of China. -Cuba has made Internet usage illegal without a permit[w]. For the most part only medical doctors can get permits, making the neighbourhood doctor the place to go to send e-mail to family abroad, but the Cuban government has been trying to restrict this. -The United States of America enacted[w] in 1996 the Communications Decency Act, which severely restricted online speech that could potentially be seen by a minor – which, it was argued, was most of online speech. Free speech advocates, however, managed to have most of the act overturned by the courts. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act criminalizes the discussion and dissemination[w] of technology that could be used to circumvent[w] copyright protection mechanisms, and makes it easier to act against alleged copyright infringement on the Internet. Other countries with Internet censorship - Pakistan, United Arab Emirates, Maldive, Singapore, South Korea, Syria, Brazil, Italy, United Kingdom, French etc. Censored content in China Research into the mainland Chinese Internet censorship has shown that censored websites include: - Websites belonging to outlawed organizations, including Falun Gong, Tibetan independence, and Taiwan independence - News sources that often cover some taboo topics such as police brutality, Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, freedom of speech, democracy, and Marxist sites. These sites include Voice of America, BBC News, and Yahoo! Hong Kong. - Web sites that host user content, such as Blogspot, Wikipedia, and Geocities - Obscenity, Pornography and criminal activity Blocked websites are indexed to a lesser[w] degree, if at all, by some Chinese search engines, such as Baidu and Google China. This sometimes has considerable[w] impact[w] on the search results. c) Publishing web pages The Web is available to individuals outside mass media. In order to "publish" a web page, one does not have to go through a publisher or other media institution, and potential readers could be found in all corners of the globe. Unlike books and documents, hypertext does not have a linear order from the beginning to the end. It is not broken down into the hierarchy of chapters, sections, subsections, etc. Many different kinds of information are now available on the Web, and for those who wish to know other societies, their cultures and peoples, it has become easier. When travelling in a foreign country or a remote town, one might be able to find some information a