Due to the recent insults made against Islam and the Holy Prophet in an amateurish video, the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) is making an effort to increase awareness about the kind of impact internet can have on society through Initiative on Internet and Society (IIS). This is an important awareness programme that every country must start for its internet users.
LUMS has started this awareness programme in July and its purpose is becoming more apparent with the recent events. The programme was officially launched in August. The awareness programme will try to highlight internet’s impact on law, media and technology. It is the first of its kind of programme in South Asia.
According to Kiran Nazish, who is a fellow at LUMS, there has been no research conducted on the kind of impact internet has in Pakistan. It is also high time that such a study is undertaken. So far the images that the world is seeing are of death and destruction due to the blasphemous content, which will portray Pakistan in the negative light. Although internet is also positively used in Pakistan, not just to communicate, but to conduct businesses too. With IT entrepreneurship taking its roots in the country, the future is surely bright for the internet in Pakistan.
Internet has become a part of modern communication. It has become essential to understand the kind of impact and power it holds not just to bring issues to the front, but also in creating chaos as was just seen recently because ‘hate speech’ was allowed under the right of ‘freedom of expression’. Though it is completely a misuse and misinterpretation of what freedom of expression means and what ‘hate speech’ is. The internet also needs regulation, like every other media, whether it is print or traditional electronic media.