Editorial: Government vs privacy - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Editorial: Government vs privacy

The following is an editorial from FOX6 WBRC-TV General Manager Lou Kirchen, first aired on Tuesday, October 5, 2010:

Given the choice, many of us would say no to more government intrusion into our lives, right?  We don't want more regulations telling us what we can and can't do.  But, where are the limits regarding our rights of freedom of speech and access to information, when it comes to the hurtful, sometimes inaccurate, even pornographic content and behaviors we see generated on the internet and  in social media?

Yet again, the airways are filled with discussion about another young person who has committed suicide because of video posted on the internet.  Some have called it cyber-bullying.  What gives any of us the right to use any medium to hurt another person?   Beyond that, the internet has become the hiding place for child pornographers and predators.  Pornography sites are among the most visited on the internet.

On the other side of it, the internet and our indispensible cell-phones, have given us the ability to connect with friends and family in ways we could never have imagined…thru video, with music and texting.   Parents give their children phones as a way to stay in touch in emergency situations.  

The Federal Communications Commission, the same government entity that has oversight for broadcasters' content, has proposed that they manage the web as well.  Certainly, it would seem to be impossible to manage a medium of this scope.  But, as a society, we can't seem to effectively control our own behaviors.   So, are we at a point where some governance is needed to protect our families from harm?  

What do you think?

If you would like to respond to this editorial, email editorials@gowbrc.com, write

P.O. B
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