The internet has progressively transformed the way people share information, changing the quality, speed, and style of interpersonal communication. The internet emphasizes the worldwide connection of computers in the efforts of accessing and sharing information with other people. Although the internet is acknowledged as one of the most important inventions by human beings, it has created significant problems over the past few years. The modern growth of internet technology has promoted easy access to inappropriate online content, increasing the level of addiction, social isolation, and even depression. Parents have a great responsibility for monitoring the suitability of online content, application, and websites visited by their children. The government can control the common problems of the internet by prioritizing policies that prevent the young generation from accessing dangerous and addictive websites. This paper analyzes how easy accessibility of the internet has promoted depression problems in society, providing reliable solutions to promote the wellbeing of both individuals and communities’ growth.
The tremendous growth of internet usage in recent years has remarkably altered the way people receive and process information. The internet has enabled individuals to have access to unlimited amounts of knowledge and information. According to Conte, “Internet is an important source through which an individual can easily get information, remain in touch with their beloved ones, and perform thousands of online activities” (Conte 4). In this regard, the internet provides both dangerous and informative content, highly influential in either destroying or building people’s lives. Therefore, people can get the right knowledge from the internet in the efforts of implementing their daily lives.
The advances in modern internet technology have caused serious problems in society, especially, children’s easy access to inappropriate websites and influential content. The internet comprises of various websites that provide content that is not appropriate and advisable to the young generation. According to Connell, “Inappropriate content includes information or images that upset your child, material that’s directed at adults, inaccurate information that might lead or tempt your child into unlawful or dangerous behavior” (Connell 65). In this regard, as the young generation becomes more involved on the internet, the probability that they are watching inappropriate content depends highly on what they are doing online. The internet highly promotes videos and free games’ pop-ups using cartoon characters that promote negative behaviors, including violence or self-harm. Therefore, easy access to the influential web pages by the young generation is the main problem of the internet, negatively impacting modern society.
The internet advocates various online activities that increase children’s probability of viewing inappropriate content. Research acknowledges that joining social media networks at a remarkably low age can affect children’s possibility of accessing irrelevant and frustrating online materials. Accordingly, playing games using applications that do not monitor and regulate players’ age can remarkably affect children’s behavior. According to Shirley, “we know that as children become more active online it’s highly likely that they will see something that they may not be able to process and in many cases may not tell anyone about what they have seen” (Shirley 118). In this regard, the research stresses that many children do not share the worst experiences they have ever endured on the internet, highly impacting their psychological wellbeing. Therefore, the internet can provide easy access to inappropriate online content that is highly influential to the minors.
Inappropriate online materials differ remarkably from different perspectives of both children and parents. The common inappropriate online materials that may substantially impact children’s behavior include pornographic material, gambling sites, and games which promote violence, terrorism, and cruelty. Shirley explains that “it can be difficult to monitor what your child is viewing as they can access inappropriate material through any internet-enabled device, including mobile ones such as a phone or tablet” (Shirley 123). In this regard, some social media platforms provide a kind of rating that advises participants on the level of explicit content contained in a certain piece of media. Therefore, parents play a great role in assessing the rightness of online content, applications, and websites seeing by their children.
Playing online games and browsing the internet for a long time can become highly addictive, diminishing people’s productivity. According to Shirley, “Internet addiction is a behavioral addiction in which a person becomes dependent on the use of the Internet, or other online devices, as a maladaptive way of coping with life’s stresses” (Shirley 137). In this regard, some countries including South Korea have declared internet addiction a national health crisis based on how it is impacting people on society. Internet addiction is associated with various dangerous online activities, including gambling, playing video games, and watching online sex. Therefore, children have insufficient awareness of controlling their internet usage, lacking the relevant knowledge about the potential risks exposed by the internet.
Social networking and the internet promote cases of depression as users compare their living standards with other people. Research claims those individuals who utilize a lot of their time online and surfing the internet are at a greater risk of experiencing depressive symptoms. According to a Personal Interview I conducted on Arthur who experienced a serious mood disorder, “I have developed a compulsive internet habit, whereby I replace real-life social interaction with online chat rooms and social networking sites” (Arthur 17). In this regard, Arthur admitted that the internet is progressively disconnecting him from real-life experiences, promoting the level of social isolation, loneliness, and depression. Therefore, excessive use of the internet is highly linked to depression, a serious mood disorder that impacts people’s behaviors, actions, and feelings.
Parents can talk to their children on the dangers of the internet while placing strict restrictions on participation in harmful online activities. Parents can purchase and utilize third-party filters in the efforts of protecting their children from viewing inappropriate content and information. According to Arthur, “Make sure your child is not viewing appropriate pages by looking at the Internet browser’s history or make sure they are not deleting the history to hide what they are viewing” (Arthur 25). In this regard, parents need to monitor online activities performed by their children in the efforts of restricting access to various influential websites. Therefore, preparing children on how to use the internet is highly important in protecting them from risks exposed by modern technology.
The government and law enforcement agencies can play a great role in limiting the amount and access to inappropriate content on the internet. The central government can prioritize policies that criminalize publications of obscene materials which may corrupt people’s mind who are reading, hearing, or seeing the contained content. According to Barkley, “the government can propose measures to regulate social media companies over harmful content, including substantial fines and the ability to block services that do not stick to the rules” (Barkley 107). The common sources of inappropriate online content that may require the government’s oversight include social media platforms, movies, and video games. Therefore, the government can place heavy restrictions and fines on unapproved possession, distribution, and production of explicit contents in the efforts of protecting minors.
Inappropriate online content can have devastating impacts on children’s beliefs, knowledge, and attitudes. Barkley claims that “Sites such as YouTube and Facebook have their own rules about what is unacceptable and the way that users are expected to behave towards one another” (Barkley 130). In this regard, the interpretation of inappropriate content found on the internet depends a lot on the user’s self-governance. Additionally, the government has the responsibility of protecting the public from fake news and violence, acknowledging the importance of placing heavy restrictions on internet usage. Therefore, both parents and the government can control the common problems of the internet by prioritizing policies that prevent the young generation from accessing dangerous and addictive websites.
In conclusion, this paper has analyzed how easy accessibility to the internet has promoted depression problems in society, providing reliable solutions that promote individuals’ and communities’ wellbeing. The internet is a worldwide connection of computers in the efforts of accessing and sharing information across the globe. The growth in modern internet technology has resulted in serious problems in society, especially, children’s easy access to inappropriate websites and addictive content. The primary inappropriate online materials that may substantially impact children’s behavior and development include pornographic material, gambling sites, and games which encourage violence, terrorism, and immorality. Inappropriate online content can cause devastating impacts on children’s beliefs, knowledge, and attitudes. Therefore,both parents and the government can control the main problems of the internet by prioritizing policies that prevent the young generation from accessing dangerous and addictive websites.
Arthur, Dan. “A Personal Interview on Internet Addiction”. The Internet, 2019, pp. 1-9.
Barkley, Daniel. “Government Effectiveness on the Internet”. Journal of Government Information, vol. 27, no. 3, 2000, pp. 104-207. Elsevier BV, doi:10.1016/s13237(00)00166-0.
Connell, Michael. “Protection against Inappropriate Content on the Internet”. Internet Technology, vol. 10, no. 1, 2017, pp. 61-112. Inderscience, doi:10.1504/2017.083038.
Conte, Alberto. “Sustainable Internet”. Computing, vol. 17, no. 1, 2013, pp. 1-13. Electronics Engineers, doi:10.1109/2013.14.
Shirley, Laura. Internet Addiction. Oxford, 2009, pp. 117-212.