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Title: Is internet access a human right?
Authors: Nuyen, A.T. 
Keywords: Digital divide
Human right
Internet access
Issue Date: 2010
Citation: Nuyen, A.T. (2010). Is internet access a human right?. WEBIST 2010 - Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Web Information Systems and Technology 2 : 287-292. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: In June 2009, the highest court of France, The Constitutional Council, declared internet access to be a basic human right. Many people are now campaigning to have it recognized as a human right by the United Nations, along with those human rights already recognized by the world body. The main motivation behind the campaign is the desire to close the digital divide, particularly that between rich and poor nations. However, while having internet access recognized as a human right might go some way towards addressing the digital divide issue, the theoretical case for recognition has not been clearly established. Without a solid theoretical case, recognizing something to be a human right is a misunderstanding of the nature of that something as well as of human rights. The former kind of misunderstanding may result in misdirected efforts at promoting the activity in question and the latter in a debasement of human rights. This paper will provide an account of human rights and will argue that on the basis of such account, internet access is not a human right, even though it is an important right in itself and one that enables the promotion of other human rights.
Source Title: WEBIST 2010 - Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Web Information Systems and Technology
ISBN: 9789896740252
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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