Has Internet Brought about More Harm than it is Good?


Internet has successfully transformed the methods of communication and the use of computers within the past few years. It has turned out to be a global network that connects billion of electronic devices through which almost every possible data can be retrieved and the process of communication is eased as well. The basic method to build communication is to connect a computer or a device to the internet (GCF, “Internet basics: What is the internet?”). In the present scenario, internet is regarded as an infrastructure of widespread information, which is a collaboration of several communities and technologies. The successful use of internet is mainly attributable to satisfy the essential needs of the society to push the communication process forward (Leiner, Cerf, Clark, Kahn, Kleinrock, Lynch, Postel, Roberts and Wolff, “Brief history of the internet”).

Thesis statement. This study argues whether the negative impacts of internet surpass all the benefits it possesses.

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The use of internet has undoubtedly emerged as a significant source to retrieve any information irrespective of geographic, demographic or political differences. While it is regarded as a boon principally, availability of information also indicates a higher level of risk, with threats to hacking essential information by unauthorized users. Therefore, initiating proper measures such as availability of authentic sites, news from which users can easily differentiate between the extremely biases and untrustworthy information among others are essential (Wright, “This house believes the internet brings more harm than good”). According to Harris, excessive use of internet causes an addiction in the minds of people, which may have an adverse effect on their life specifically for teenagers, in terms of work performance, academics, mental and physical health as well as in relationships (Harris, “Too much internet use ‘can damage teenagers’ brains”). 

The teenagers can even face symptoms like atrophy due to excessive usage of internet, which have a negative impact on their memory and concentration, thereby reducing their decision making abilities and lead to inadequate behavior (Harris, “Too much internet use ‘can damage teenagers’ brains’”). Considering the positive impacts, internet has numerous contributions in every field, which mostly evident in the service industry. For instance healthcare sector, internet bears a capability to improve the quality of care with innovative equipments for providing better service to the patients. It is constantly proving itself as an effective mean through which several lives are being saved with the help of remote consultations and builds up convenient, efficient and cost-effective care delivery to the patients. Moreover, in medical field the availability of internet provides faster access to the medical history of a patient and immensely helps in minimizing the risks of poor treatment as well (IIA, “10 benefits of health IT”). 

However, along with several advantages, internet also possesses few challenges in the process of accessing it to retrieve information, Amongst all, the major threat that internet has brought up with its progression in the society is maintaining privacy, which continues to put barrier to successful use of internet in developing the society. This kind of threat majorly include during online transactions. In this case, consumers are required to provide financial as well as personal information for their convenient and easy shopping or for any other purposes, wherein misuse of the data by both unauthorized and authorized users is prominent (Akhter 118). Internet has largely affected privacy of the individuals specifically with the prevalence of few websites that often asks for personal information, which is then sold to various other sites for commercial gain. With gaining more users, the internet has now become a platform for criminals as well, who can easily gain access to individual’s private information and conduct unethical activities with the help of those data (Wright, “This house believes the internet brings more harm than good”). To present the actual threat of this particular issue, Rodewig identified that even though the function of geotagging is a great contribution to the society as a whole, but it possesses higher amount of risk through which the location of a person can be traced and may cause harm to them. The terrorists or other criminals with the help of internet and the feature of geotagging, conduct their activities (Rodewig, “Geotagging poses security risks”). 

The development of internet possesses unlimited possibilities in terms of betterment of people life in the near future. However, through the rapid advancement in technology, there have been significant challenges as well, wherein unethical activities and racist content is growing at first pace. In the present decade, the radical terrorists are using internet facilities to dispense their propaganda to exchange information and then execute their harmful operations accordingly. Therefore, to enhance the opportunities in terms of internet, the potential risks need to be mitigate IT (Heidenreich and Gray 17-18). Social media is one of the major platforms that possess both positive and negative influence to individuals’ life. On one hand, people can easily communicate with other people and build a network across the world; while on the other hand, it increases risks of misuse of personal information by unauthenticated users to conduct unethical activities as well. Social media is an important contribution of internet that has resulted in connecting and improving the level of communication, leading to create enhanced discovery of information (SHRM, “Social Media: What are the advantages and disadvantages of social networking sites? What should we include in a policy?”).


The above presented facts definitely indicate that internet possess few threats to the society as a whole. However, contradicting the thought, Mitra argued that even with the negative impacts of internet it is still regarded as an effective tool for supporting the learning of students, developing healthcare facilities, cross border business and international trading that boost the economic growth of a nation. Furthermore, the harm or negative impacts caused by internet to an individual’s lives are totally depended on the process of using the technology (Mitra, “The internet can harm, but can also be a child’s best tool for learning”). For example, if a child is left alone with internet, it can surely be subversive, deadly, perverse and filthy place. 

However, with the rapid advancement in technologies the risks can be prevented by adopting few security measures that would restrict the misuse of internet. Children who are accessing the facilities of internet from self-organized and safe learning environment obtains access to various meaningful information, which in turn enable them to learn, observe and read within shorter period of time and gain self-confidence within them that might not be possible from the traditional mode of learning (Mitra, “The internet can harm, but can also be a child’s best tool for learning”). Cadwalladr (The ‘granny cloud’: The network of volunteers helping poorer children learn) stated that the education system is one of the important domains that have immensely been benefited with the existence of internet. With the inclusion of Granny Cloud, the children from remote areas are being able to connect with the education as well (Cadwalladr, “The ‘granny cloud’: The network of volunteers helping poorer children learn”).

Even though internet offers benefits the patients as well the doctors to obtain information and other medical conditions, there are also few risks that has been increased with the emergence of internet. With the increasing rate of using Information and Communication Technology (ICT), the role of nurses, doctors and other care providers are constantly evolving. The internet has successfully transformed the tradition of consulting with family doctors. Patients are now willingly approaching the medical websites to retrieve information and then are consulting with the physicians, which further assists them to minimize costs and get hold of best information (Oliveira 327-328). 

On the other hand, due to wide access of information, there are high changes of misusing of data, but it also offers people with the opportunity to get access of news, track one at the time of uncertainty. In addition, people can concentrate on reducing cybercrime that will help them to gain the advantages of internet without any concerns regarding the misuse of their information (Wright, “This house believes the internet brings more harm than good”). With regard to this, people concentrated on initiating adequate measures to prevent the associated risks with using internet, as it will enable them to gain wide access of the digitalized world and in increasingly play a greater role in influencing one’s live positively in the economy, education and the business domain as well (Pew Research Center, “Internet Seen as Positive Influence on Education, but Negative on Morality in Emerging and Developing Nations”).

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The internet offers people wide access to varied information for both personal and official purposes, which though in few cases possess negative impacts as well. Throughout the study, several issues, risks and threat are highlighted that affects individual’s lives along with the positive attributes that internet possess and offers to the society. Internet has a vast contribution on the society that enhanced the boundary for people based on which they can have knowledge on the global activities as well as have the access to international domain in terms of business or education. Amongst all, education and medical sectors are the most common and benefitted domains from the use of internet as it has provided several innovative techniques and equipments to provide better services to people. In spite of its negative impacts to the society, the internet can be regarded as an effective tool of enhancing and improving knowledge of every individual, which ultimately contributes to increase the overall growth of the nation. Hence, it can be ascertained that it is not the internet that causes harm but the individual who possess evil intention or misuse its offerings. 

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  1. Akhter, Syed H. “Privacy concern and online transactions: the impact of internet self-efficacy and internet involvement.” Journal of Consumer Marketing 31.2 (2014): 118-125. Print. 
  2. Cadwalladr, Carole. The ‘granny cloud’: the network of volunteers helping poorer children learn. Education, 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  3. GCF. Internet basics: What is the internet?, 2017. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  4. Harris, Sarah. Too much internet use ‘can damage teenagers’ brains’. Science, 2011. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  5. Heidenreich, Brianna, and David H. Gray. “Cyber-Security: The Threat of the Internet.” Global Security Studies 4.3 (2013): 17-26. Print. 
  6. IIA. 10 benefits of health IT. 2011. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  7. Leiner, Barry M., Vinton G. Cerf, David D. Clark, Robert E. Kahn, Leonard Kleinrock, Daniel C. Lynch, Jon Postel, Larry G. Roberts and Stephen Wolff. Brief history of the internet. The Internet, 2017. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  8. Mitra, Sugata. The internet can harm, but can also be a child’s best tool for learning. Internet Safety, 2013. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  9. Oliveira, Jayr Figueiredo de. “The effect of the internet on the patient-doctor relationship in a hospital in the city of São Paulo.” JISTEM-Journal of Information Systems and Technology Management 11.2 (2014): 327-344. Print. 
  10. Pew Research Center. Internet seen as positive influence on education but negative on morality in emerging and developing nations, 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  11. Rodewig, Chery. Geotagging poses security risks. Article, 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  12. SHRM. Social Media: What are the advantages and disadvantages of social networking sites? What should we include in a policy?. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
  13. Wright, Robert. This house believes the internet brings more harm than good. Debates, 2017. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. 
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