Over the last one week, I have observed that the level of abuse on both Facebook and Twitter has gone up threefold as compared to the last year same period. The situation left me mulling on what solution can work best to prevent and contain malicious use of Internet and social media to seriously regulate the cyberspace. Time has come when Intelligence agencies, telecom operators and IT companies should join hands with governments to set appropriate mechanism that will address issues related to blocking content on the Internet and social media in a timely and reasonable manner. In such a move, governments will be able to address complaints from mobile operators and Internet Service Providers that customers often vent their rage at service providers on finding content or websites blocked by rogue government orders. Placing directives in public domain will help prevent consumers from assuming service providers are the one censoring online content.
Solutions sough must address the menace through an effective cyber monitoring system, lay out guidelines and operating procedures on the nature of online content that will be blocked, and specify penalties for perpetrators.There should also a legal arm that will fill up gaps when dealing with such issues like deterring malicious use of the Internet and social media. However, governments should unveil well thought out public guidelines to handle responses to such situations and know what kind of content is liable to be regulated and for how long, the structures and process of such regulations, proactive not reactive dissemination of information to counter falsified propaganda, as well as response and penalty to offenders.