May 31, 2010
Calls for Internet access as a fundamental right
Internet use has become so woven into everyday life that some technology experts say online access should be legally protected, even to the point of considering it a human right, reports The Sydney Morning Herald.
According to Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre executive director David Vaile, removing online access would potentially disenfranchise people from society.
Australian copyright provisions allowing ''fair use'' were substantially less forgiving than US laws and threatened consumers here with losing their online access.
... Internet community activist Brett Solomon, the former head of GetUp! and now executive director of AccessNow.org in the US, backed Mr Vaile's call to safeguard online access.
''Access to the internet is both a gateway to other rights and a right unto itself,'' Mr Solomon said, describing it as ''essential to the enjoyment of one's basic human rights''. He said online access was central to freedom of expression. ''Without access … citizens cannot fully participate in modern democracy,'' he said.
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