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What Should Go on the Internet: Privacy, Freedom and Security Online (NIFI Issue Guide)

The National Issues Forums Institute published the 12-page Issue Guide, What Should Go on the Internet: Privacy, Freedom and Security Online (2013) and is an update to an earlier guide about the Internet. This guide is designed to help facilitate balanced deliberation about what should go on the internet.

From the guide…

NIFI_Internet2013The same Internet that has given us new ways to socialize, learn, and engage in civic life has also given criminals new avenues to steal from us and scam us, often using information gleaned from public government documents now posted online. And because no one’s in charge, there’s no single authority we can call to complain.

When does our personal information become public? What data collection is acceptable? Should there be limits on what we can do online? It’s time to find a way to balance our needs to safeguard privacy, preserve free speech, and ensure security for all our citizens, young and old.

It’s time to answer the question: What should go on the Internet?

This issue guide was prepared for the National Issues Forums Institute (NIFI) in collaboration with the Kettering Foundation, and is an updated version (2013) of a previous guide about the Internet.

This issue guide presents three options for deliberation:

Option One: “Protect Individual Privacy”
Privacy is a fundamental American value. But the Internet has obliterated the line between public and private, forcing Americans to live in a virtual fishbowl. Our top priority must be to safeguard personal information on the Internet.

Option Two: “Promote Freedom of Speech and Commerce”
The Internet is a revolutionary leap forward for democratic societies and free markets. Direct or indirect censorship by concerned citizens, special interests, or government could stifle this great resource.

Option Three: “Secure Us from Online Threats”
The Internet is a Wild West of criminal activity that threatens our personal safety, our economic vitality, and our national security. Our top priority must be protecting our children and ourselves.

About the NIFI Issue Guides
NIFI’s Issue Guides introduce participants to several choices or approaches to consider. Rather than conforming to any single public proposal, each choice reflects widely held concerns and principles. Panels of experts review manuscripts to make sure the choices are presented accurately and fairly. By intention, Issue Guides do not identify individuals or organizations with partisan labels, such as Democratic, Republican, conservative, or liberal. The goal is to present ideas in a fresh way that encourages readers to judge them on their merit.

Issue Guides are generally available in print or PDF download for a small fee ($2 to $4). All NIFI Issue Guides and associated tools can be accessed at www.nifi.org/en/issue-guides.

Follow on Twitter: @NIForums.

Resource Link: www.nifi.org/en/issue-guide/what-should-go-internet-2013

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