Computers In Society Paper

This essay has a total of 2055 words and 7 pages.

Computers In Society

Computers have good and bad effects on society. This essay deals with both aspects of
computers. This paper will deal with two articles that have been written about computers.
One article deals with the positive side of computers and the other deals with the
negative side of computers. Negative Effects of Computers Schengili-Roberts, Keith.
"Holmolka Trial On BBS Raises Information Access Issues". Computer Paper, The. January
1994. pg. 12. This article deals with the fact that even though information on the Karla
Holmolka-Teale trial has officially been banned by the Canadian government, it is still
accessible to many Canadians. It is very easy to get a hold of this material. Anyone with
a computer, modem, and some spare time could most likely get a hold of this information.
The court transcripts, transcripts of the A Current Affair episode that was banned in
Canada, and other articles from other publications banned in Canada are accessible from
local BBSes, Internet, or by calling long distance to a BBS in the US or Europe. Also,
Internet, a computer network of BBSes established all over the world, has various chat
bases set up for people to discuss the information. People can also get the information by
having it sent to them from friends or relatives living outside of Canada. While it is not
illegal to have this information, it is illegal to have for the purpose of distribution.
The reason that the above information was banned in Canada is so that Karla
Holmolka-Teale's husband, Paul, is assured a fair trial. The lawyers, court, etc., were
afraid that if the public found out about the court proceedings, they would make up their
mind about Paul's innocence before he was given a trial and therefore, finding an
un-biased jury would be next too impossible. Another problem with computers and modems is
the distribution of X rated pictures and other pornographic material through the phone
lines. Even though there are adult BBSes dealing strictly with this material, many other
BBSes that do not restrict memberships to certain age groups have it available too. The
children would then be able to receive this material by just lying about their age to the
Sys-Op (System-Operators). This poses a problem for society and the government. It shows
us that almost all information is accessible as long as you have a computer and a modem.
It also tells us that information bans many times don't work and that there will almost
always be an information leak. You can also see that because pornographic material is
available, children may not be safe from pornographic images that they may accidentally
stumble across one day and possibly effect them for the rest of their lives. Positive
Effects of Computers Crane, David. "Electronic Highway Needs PM". Toronto Star, Business,
January 23, 1994. This article deals with the fact that the government is trying to start
up an "information highway." In other words, the Canadian government, under the leadership
of Jean Chretien, is trying to get computers set up in schools, hospitals, and even homes.
This is also what the U.S., under President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Administration,
has been trying to do. Right now, U.S. companies are engaging in mergers, takeovers, etc.,
in order to have banking, home shopping, video on demand and video games ready for home
computers. This plan includes spending $4 billion (U.S.) on the computer industry.
Industry deregulation has also been announced in hopes of speeding up the private
investment sector. A strong message that everyone must be linked up to networks or face
new regulations has been sent. U.S. vice-president, Al Gore, has also asked for free
services to U.S. schools, libraries, and hospitals. This same urgency does not yet exist
in Canada. Ottawa is already helping out the private sector establish a project called the
CANARIE (a $100 million electronic system linking regional networks). New Brunswick
Premier Frank McKenna was appointed Minister of State for the Information Highway. On
February 1, the Information Technology Association of Canada and the Canadian Advanced
Technology Association of Canada will start a two-day conference in Toronto to discuss the
electronic highway. This information highway is good for two reasons. Number one, it is
good for the economy. This is because it will create jobs for the public in areas of
research and development, plus construction. The second reason it is good is because it
will help people to learn. With computer networks in their homes, people will not need to
go to the library for a project, they can simply download the information to their home. A
student could also call the school with a modem and receive the homework he missed that
day because he was sick. A parent could also check through medical information at the
hospital to see how to treat their child for an ailment. Computers will also help long
distance family and friends to communicate without having to pay for long distance phone
charges or for stamps. One could just leave messages on computer networks such as Internet
or UniNet that are connected to computers all over the world. Then, the receiver could
call a local site of that net and receive all of their e-mail (electronic mail). Another
use would be that you could pay your bills from your home without having to go wait in
line at the bank or rely on the unreliable post office to deliver your check in time. As
you can see, an information/electronic highway would be of great use to the public. This
highway is greatly anticipated. Those articles are just two of the many effects computers
have on society. Sometimes those effects are good, and sometime they are bad, but from
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