Threat of the Powerful: The Internet

– Want to send a bouquet to your girlfriend sitting miles away? Go to the Internet.

– Want to know more about a topic or a subject? Go to the Internet.

Any activity you think of, the Internet has the answer. And that too, within no time.

Internet has been a revolution in the modern world. It has given new horizon to the ways of communication. The world is constantly squeezing with every passing hours. This valley of information has become an important companion of the modern society. It has made virtually everything in life accessible, and that too, just a mouse click away. Hence, the power of Internet.

Since its inception in early 1960’s, Internet has not only gone drastic transformation, but has also grown multi folds. The number of websites, free services, web pages, chat rooms, message boards, online sales etc supported by advertising.- all has facilitated its enormous growth (Jalota,S., Internet & Web, 2004). Today, with the vast knowledge presented on the Internet, anyone can glean great sources of information. Almost all business houses have websites that provides opportunity to people to conduct business ‘on line’.

According to an estimate Internet users have grown by 34.5% in Asia and 65.8 % in the rest of the world in the last five years – An encouraging figure, Undoubtedly. But another reports cyber crime activity being increased from 74% to 80 % in 2005 & top 50 malicious code can reveal cofidential data – A point to ponderâÂ?¦âÂ?¦

As with all growth, there are pains to be dealt with. We have barely begun to explore the potential of Internet – the “World Wide Web”, with its potential for simple on-line access to almost any information imaginable. There has been an explosive growth in the number of websites, a number of which we keep on visiting on day to day basis, the rest – come through by the different search engines. While clicking on these sites, the first ones to attract attention are the advertisements of the affilliates, the links available on the sites directly or through pop-ups opening subsequently. These are primarily for the purpose of maximising traffic to one’s site in a way as to maximise the profit of the seller.

Good! –
But what if you intend to reach yahoo and you end up at yahooka (a pornography site)?

Such activities are a concern to the net world. – The Brand Abuse. i.e. use of a company’s name, product name, or brand in another website or domain name, specifically to leverage its brand assets or divert traffic from its site. Such activity that ends up in the loss of revenue, customer or reputation of a company or brand by the activity of some other site / company or brand is commonly termed as Brand Abuse in Cyber World is a threat to the Netizens (Brian, H M, 2003) . Some forms of the abuse are:

– Unauthorised use of Logos & Images in one’s site, company’s name or product in meta – tags or distribution of sales of consumer good,

– Use of hidden & visible text, company’s name or competitor’s site, logos or images in pornographic context,

– Piracy of software, music, video, framing another sites content, domain name abuse or posting of gripe sites & negative newsgroup etc. (Cary, L C, 1995)

Even as the Internet intrudes into society, remember that over the last two decades “The Net” has developed a culture of its own, one that may collide with society’s. Already business is making its pitch to dominate the Internet. The big questions loom unanswered: How will society change the Internet… and how will the Internet change society? – The threat of the powerful is thus growing and remains to be countered.

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