The Internet is a network (a group of computers that can communicate with each other) connecting millions of other computer networks in the world. It is made up of networks of official and educational institutions, commercial and social organizations and governments and private agencies. The linking of computers is called “networking.” The Internet, now, is a collection of individual networks connected by telephone lines. The user of a computer network can gain information from or exchange messages with any other network anywhere at all times. The World Wide Web (WWW) is a collection of millions of changing documents on computers all over the world. The different websites that run into millions offer information in the sciences, arts, religions, education, commerce, industrý, agriculture, governments, law and almost every topic or subject under the sun. The use of the Internet, thus, promotes the communication of all sorts of information and knowledge in different societies and countries.
Further, e-mail or electronic mail is a system that enables (lets) people send and receive messages and data (information) through networks and the Internet. It is a great facility, but the users also misuse it by providing wrong information in social and commercial contacts. The electronic mail messages can be misleading.
The Internet has provided the service of chatting (talking) to users online. Wonderfully, any number of talkers can see each other on the computer screen as they talk. This has made conferences and meetings on computers possible between groups of businesspeople, military commanders, politicians and leaders, educators, doctors, engineers, -scientists, and so on. Here, too, people often provide wrong information and misguide others.
Perhaps the best use of the Internet is being made in education for the extension of learning and. knowledge. Experts and scholars in different countries and continents exchange information on the sciences and arts, technical and technological matters and all other subjects of their interest. The information available on the Internet can be downloaded to computers.
The Internet has surely brought countries and nations closer. Like the radio, TV, and telephone it has functioned to help in the development of the world into a global village. However, it has been put to harmful uses as well.
Firstly, the Internet has been used rather too much for commercial advertising. At times, misleading information by producers is provided in their efforts to promote the sale of their goods. Orders for these goods are placed with their makers and ready payments are made through credit cards. Later, the buyers come to know about the poor quality of the goods.
Secondly, information, pictures, and material harmful to the character are displayed on the Internet. This has had bad effects on young minds.
Thirdly, the chatting system on the Internet brings harmful people in contact with honest users. The honest, thus, are sometimes misled and cheated. Newspapers have reported wrong marriages between Internet users as a result of chatting between them.