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Open Thread: How would you 'fix' the internet?

This month The Good Information Project looks at tech and the new digital age. We want to know how the internet could be ‘fixed’ to improve quality of life in Ireland.

Image: Alamy

THIS MONTH THE Good Information Project will turn its focus to the new digital age, and how the latest developments in the ever-changing tech sphere intersect with Ireland’s public interest. 

As technological progress ploughs its furrow onwards, our coverage will be informed by you, and we want to know what you think should be done to make the internet a safer, healthier, more efficient tool.

In the last five years, the hard-to-regulate nature of the internet has played a major role in the spread of misinformation and conspiracy theories. It was also revealed last year that Meta (formerly Facebook) knew that its Instagram app was harming the mental health of teen girls. Closer to home, a 2021 ransomware attack on the HSE IT systems badly compromised the Irish healthcare system.

So what needs to be done to ‘fix’ the internet?

Does ‘Big Tech’ need to be broken up? Does the State need to get tougher with regulations in the digital space? Should platforms like Facebook and YouTube be treated as publishers, and made responsible for the content they host? Have the tech giants become too wealthy to serve the common good?

Or is the problem fundamentally a human one? Should the right to disconnect become law? Do we need better digital literacy programmes to build a world where we can code our way out of our problems? We want to know what you think.

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This work is co-funded by Journal Media and a grant programme from the European Parliament. Any opinions or conclusions expressed in this work are the author’s own. The European Parliament has no involvement in nor responsibility for the editorial content published by the project. For more information, see here.

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