Автор: Емил Костов
Title: Control and freedom on the web
Even the „father of the Internet“ Tim Bernard Lee warned in 2006 that the web could get out of control and end up in the hands of evil. He recommends analyzing all the processes that take place in the Internet space and thus prevent anti-democratic forces from carrying out systematic manipulation of information.
Around Russia’s war in Ukraine, it became clear that a significant part of the information being disseminated about the conflict had little to do with reality. This rather murky wave of information inevitably affects young people as well. Stanislav Dodov from the National Youth Network team is engaged in the work on the projects within the framework of U-report Bulgaria, a platform initiated by UNICEF and active in more than 90 countries in the world.
The latest study is entitled U the War Reporters. According to Dodov, young people are obviously strongly influenced by what is happening in Ukraine and comment on it. The survey shows that the majority of them draw information about the conflict mainly from the so-called traditional media – television, radio, than from online media.
Control of information about the war and the positions of the parties is carried out on the one hand by blocking proven false and propaganda content. On the other hand, the aim is to inform users about facts that have been verified and can now be trusted. Nikola Tulechki is a university lecturer, data consultant, as well as part of the team of Factcheck.bg – a platform fully engaged in checking facts from the information flow. He explains that those spreading misinformation on the web use a popular topic or event as bait, which they offer discussion and sharing. In this thread, by the way, the main fake information is released. Tulechki believes that young people, although they spend more time online and think they are aware of the peculiarities of the network, are also quite susceptible to information manipulation. On the other hand, he says, the big social networks aren’t doing enough to moderate content.
The Internet is by no means a secure environment for business, points out Plamen Popov, co-founder and executive director of Bulgarian Entrepreneur magazine. He organized a competition for entrepreneurial ideas „Start Young“. His advice to young people starting a business on the Internet is to keep in mind that not every expressed interest in a product is a willingness to buy. At the same time, he reminds that there are also ill-wishers in the Internet space who are openly looking for more naive people to take advantage of.
Young people, as people with less life experience, receive support from the regulations introduced by the European Parliament’s first reading of the Digital Services Act (DSA). Hristo Nihrizov, an expert of the Information and Communication Technologies Law Center, notes that the law provides for restrictions on targeted advertising for minors.
Online entrepreneurs, apart from everything else, should also be prepared for piracy attacks. Piracy is causing significant damage to the online distribution of movies and music. Lithuania ranks third in the European Union in terms of the volume of pirated digital content. Although the statistics are slightly improving, Elena Ruikite, project manager at Kurk Lietuvai, says there is still leaves much to be desired.