As evidenced by the Facebook Revolutions and ensuing Middle East turmoil, the Internet is a powerful tool and one capable of change. Of course, its eliminating citizen use of the Web under oppressive regimes has also yielded consequences. Perhaps inspired by these effects, the UN has declared the Internet a human right. A recent report titled “Report of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression” declares that Internet access falls under freedom of expression.
While the report may have especially poignant significance for Middle Eastern nations, it applies internationally. “Each state should thus develop a concrete and effective policy to make the Internet widely available, accessible, and affordable to all segments of population.” The US National Telecommunications and Information Association (NCIA) are collaborating with the FCC to analyze the state of broadband availability in the country. Recent findings revealed that a five to 10 percent of American cannot access Internet speeds that allow basic Web functions. So if you think this is merely a third-world problem or issue with oppressive governments, you’d be wrong.