What Are the Positive and Negative Effects of the Internet on Society?

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Some of the positive effects of the Internet on society include the wider availability of information and the ease of accessing knowledge, while the negative effects include the availability of illegal information and the increased risk of identity theft. The Internet has many advantages and disadvantages and, when used appropriately, is very beneficial.

The wide and almost instant availability of information over the Internet allows everyone to improve their knowledge and encourages self-learning and self-improvement. The Internet also makes communication easy and fast, whether that is via calls, such as voice over internet protocol (VOIP), video calls like those available with Skype, emails, forums or social media. These wide and varied lines of communication allow people from all over the world to connect with one another, and the prevalence of social media allows people to share what is important to them. The Internet also allows businesses to offer products and services nationally and internationally, improving trade and economics.

On the flip side, the Internet allows relatively easy access to illegal or inappropriate material and, because of the ease and accessibility, illegal viewing or downloading of music, television and movies has become an increasing problem. Another disadvantage of the Internet is the increased risk of the interception and fraudulent use of personal information and bank details.