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Freedom of Expression and the Social Responsibility of the Media in the Information Society
In the information society like in the industrial society, freedom of expression is a right for each and every one. That right includes the right to freedom of doing research, and the right to receive and disseminate information and all sorts of ideas regardless of any boundaries and in any form and any way of his or her choice: oral, written, printed or artistic. That freedom includes in practice special duties and social responsibilities. That right may be then restricted within clearly fixed rules of the law with the aim of securing: a) Respect for rights or reputation of others; and b) Safeguard of national security, public order, health or morality. Along with the other ICTs, the Internet is recognized as a global facilitor of information but its use should not be limited to journalism. Intellectual property, children’s rights, cultural diversity, electronic commerce and international security need to be secured with the defined boundaries of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the other international resolutions adopted for that purpose and cyber criminality just like all other forms of crimes have to be fought. To this end, the right should be combined with ethics and this should be guaranteed by the four partners of the WSIS. It is these principles that should be ceaselessly defended by the southern countries.
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