“Arunima did you complete your project?” asked mom from the bedroom of our two room apartment. “Yes mom!! Done Already!!” came my answer.
Internet- one of the most prized possession of our century, known by almost everybody in this world, has found its existence in more than billions of households of the world. Recently, a study reported that the number of IP addresses has crossed the total limit, with the increase in the number of internet users across the world. With the tremendous increase and growth in the Internet fame over the world, there is always a question hanging around the corner- Is Internet a boon or a bane?
When I asked the same question to my friends, majority of them replied – “Of course, internet is a boon! It provides us our famous social media sites, which we can’t live without even for a day, it provides us the right notes to study for our examinations, it helps us answer our queries whenever we are stuck in some situations in our lives. Without internet, our lives are incomplete”. Hearing this, I looked at my best friend, Sejal who was silently listening to the answers. She had a distant smile on her face. When I asked her the reason, she silently said, “ It is true that, without Internet our lives are not complete. But is it true, that internet is only a boon and not a bane? For us, it might be a boon, but if we see globally, internet can also be an evil, or in better words- A Necessary Evil. Isn’t it true, Arunima? What do you think?”
These statements made by Sejal, made my friends rethink their decisions. Pranali, one of my closest friends said “Internet has its own disadvantages. Don’t we hear about the hacking of sites, by hackers who steal important data and manipulate it according to their own needs? Didn’t we hear about the cyber crimes taking place all over the world and the increase in its number? The viruses which enter our computer from some sites, not only manipulate with our privacy, but also cause lose of data and various crimes, like hacking of our bank accounts and what not!!”
Hearing her speak, the whole class fell silent. The new aspect of Internet that everyone saw now, were raising thoughts in everyone’s mind. Everyone wanted to speak, and express their thoughts. Thus, started a series of discussions about the question which haunts us all- ‘Is Internet a boon or a bane?’
One by one, everyone started speaking. Some of our class geniuses started having a group discussion on this topic. Forum, one of the toppers of our class spoke “Technology is the talk of the nation. Internet is the biggest step to technology ever taken. The global world now has become smaller. A person sitting in U.S.A. can now talk to his son sitting in India at the same moment and can see to him face to face, with the help of Internet. Also booking train, airplane and movie tickets are now done in this medium. People feel free to discuss topics which create awareness among our masses. Online courses enhance and enlighten us with knowledge. Internet is definitely a boon!”
With all these discussions going on, I also started giving my say on this topic. I said “Who said that internet is not a boon? Of course it is a boon. But our topic of discussion here is whether internet is only a boon or it can be a bane too? Is it a necessary evil? I fully agree with Sejal and Pranali, about Internet being a bane too in our lives.” Saying this, I completed my speech, waiting for someone to continue with this topic. As expected my close friend, Viren supported me and started speaking “What Arunima said definitely makes sense. Today’s children and youth can be easily misleaded by the wrong content in some wrong websites. Various internet frauds like, some foreign lotteries and emails regarding the same have destroyed so many lives. But, some advantages which are pointed by Forum, cannot be neglected. Online ordering of various daily use items from Internet has become common for most of the households all over the world.Now-a-days one can apply for jobs online.Everyone can express their own views.Internet can be used for entertainment such as playing video games, watching movies etc. So, according to me, internet is a boon as well as a bane.”
With this, the whole class started discussing among themselves. Everyone participated in the discussion. Some students also started raising their hands to express their views. They all were given their chance. Shalaka, a very good friend of mine had some really interesting perspective for this topic. She started speaking “Guys, we have assignments due every week. From database to coding, every subject deals with post lab questions, pre post lab questions and various other activities. The world news, the email accounts, the search engines and the web browsers are incomplete without the Internet. All of us know that internet has lots of disadvantages too. But who cares? We get what we want, and we are satisfied with it. We also have online compilers that compile the code that we run, as well as the online educational documents that are recommended by our own professors. Now-a-days around ninety percent households have Internet connection. So, it is best that we respect the boons provided by Internet and don’t misuse it for our personal gains. Our world will be a safer place if we, as citizens teach our future generations the advantages of this vast medium and increase their knowledge about it.”
Everybody in the classroom, including our class teacher who was silently observing the class, broke into a round of applause for Shalaka. Everyone was impressed by her perspective, and the way she praised the Internet, yet mentioned the disadvantages of that. Everyone, including my friends, got appreciation for what they said.
At the end of this session, we all realized that, internet is a necessary evil. Even if we know that internet has various disadvantages, we can always try to prevent them, but we can never stop them. Internet has become an addiction for our generation, and this addiction will be passed on to the future generations as well. So, it is necessary that our future generations understand some few things like:
1) Spending more time on the net, can be harmful for both academics and health. The time spent on the Internet should not exceed the prescribed time limit.
2) Illegal Hacking of important websites and stealing data should not be encouraged. Hacking is a cybercrime, and if a person is found guilty, he can get strict punishments.
3) Cybercrime also includes spamming. For example, I remember an incident about a friend of mine, who received an email regarding some lottery competition and how my friend had won lakhs of rupees. She immediately informed the police, who reported this incident to the cybercrime department and they tracked down the gang of cheaters who were sending these fraud mails to innocent people. Never should one encourage or fall in their traps.
4) Too much addiction to the Internet is harmful. We all feel helpless when the Internet connection is down, which is not a good sign.
Thus, concluding my article, my final say is always that, Internet has not only helped us evolve as human beings, but also increased our knowledge from time to time. If we use Internet safely and as mentioned above, Internet will surely be a boon for all of us. But misuse of this medium can cause it to become a disadvantage. It is our duty to spread this awareness among masses, and make them realize the value of Internet. Internet is truly a blessing for us, and it should continue to remain so!
October 10, 2016
October 10, 2016
Stories by Arunima Mukhopadhyay