Internet has been a medium for western culture and it has also helped the non-Western countries to strengthen and promote their societies both in political and cultural ways. Internet in the Western world has brought both political and cultural differences as stated by Leoussi (2000). As medium for the Western culture, internet has promoted the freedom of association, freedom of speech and civilization in the Western nations. In the Western cultures, internet is one of the new communication technologies that the communities pursue for freedom in information and communication as indicated by Leoussi, (2000). The internet is not only important in the Western cultures because it act as a medium for exchange, but it is also important for other non Western cultures because it helps them to strengthen and promote the societies both politically and culturally.
The societies of non-Western nations embrace the internet, which promotes civilization in the countries and strengthens freer and quicker communication. As argued by Leoussi, (2000), there are physical distances in the non-western nations, which separate people making it hard for communication to take place in a quicker and freer way as in the western countries. Internet removes the natural barriers and replaces them with the use of internet connections making it easier for the people to communicate globally and locally.
As indicated by Poowin, (2010, p. 70), the use of the internet in the western nations has promoted the non-western cultures because they are able to share diverse viewpoints with all people in the global scale. Internet is significant in the non-western nations because people are able to access the internet and develop culturally and politically. In the cultural way, the internet helps people to advance their careers and connect to a larger world. Poowin, (2010, p. 70), shows that the promotion of the society in the cultural way makes it possible for the people in the western world to engage in online learning as they pursue their career. The use of online learning has changed the culture of non-western nations in that they easily embrace new cultures that come along with the use of internet.
Internet changes the culture of different people because it helps them to realize their human rights (Kendzior, 2010, p. 45). It promotes the culture and strengthens the people because they are able to know their human rights that promote development in the human progress. With the knowledge of their rights, the people in the non-western countries are able to accelerate development that strengthens the society. The culture develops because some things that affect the strength of the community like lack of equality are eliminated by combating inequality in the society.
The internet does not act as a medium for the western culture alone, but it also promotes and strengthens the non-western societies. This is evident due to the large levels of economic growth experienced in the non-western countries throughout the past decade. An example of increase in the level of internet users in the non-western countries is the Middle East. As indicated by Ward, (2011, p.10), in the year 2000, the internet users in Middle East were 3.2 million compared to the internet users in the year 2011 which is 68.5 million users. The difference is very big and it shows that the internet has improved the lives of the non-western nations in a great way.
However, not everyone in the non-western countries has access to the internet like in the western nations. The people with the internet access are exposed to many cultures which change the original culture as illustrated by Kendzior, (2010, p. 45). This has affected the nations and caused the young people to reject their cultures for the new cultures. Internet tends to block the beauty of diverse culture by introduction of new cultures in the non-western world.
However, Hermeking, (2005) argues that the internet in the non-western nations causes most of the young people to abandon their language and adapt the western languages. This weakens the culture in the non-western nations because the young people are not encouraged to learn their dominant languages. Hermeking, (2005), adds that the internet has also facilitated the spread of the western culture to the non-western nations. This has led to the young people leaving their traditional values and customs for new cultures.
The internet resources in the non-western world enable the people to develop politically in that they are able to participate in many political activities and make friends through the internet. This promotes and strengthens the society in a great way and gives it the ability to have strong social networks as argued by Ward, (2011, p. 235). The connected people in the western nations are able to participate and engage in political activities and conversations easily through the internet communications.
According to Hermeking, (2005), more people in the non-western nations are connected to the internet, and it is gaining popularity more than the radios and televisions. This will enlighten the people in the non-western countries and strengthen their abilities to compete with the people from the western world as suggested by Kendzior, (2010, p. 45). The internet has strengthened and promoted the western world because it is different from other traditional mass media due to its many to many communication sets. In the non-western countries, internet has become very important in political campaigns because it is being used as a means of communication especially for the young and the middle age people.
In the non-Western nations internet has strengthened the politics because political discussions have migrated to internet. It is used as a political tool to protect, demonstrate, and mobilize political ideologies (Poowin, 2010, p. 70). This is because the internet offers freedom in political discussions and the people can freely express themselves in any way. In promotion of the societies, the internet has promoted politics in the non-western societies and it has changed the actual politics. The people in the non-western nations give their views through the internet, which promotes and strengthens the societies. Many people get to know their potential presidential candidates and other political news through the use of twitters and Facebook available on internet.
In political expression, online interviews in the non-western world gain popularity. The interviews are internet based and they enable the people to give their views freely and to get other voters. As Ward, (2011, p. 235), puts it, the ordinary people in the society through the internet are able to actively participate in the political discussions because they can write their views on online newspaper sites and they can also give free discussions on chat rooms. Many people use internet in politics because it is easier to have free expression in the internet than in films and in books. Ward, (2011) insists that one of the factors that have changed the political structures in the non-western nations is that the nations had very high expectations of the internet. It is easier to communicate through the use of internet like the Face book, twitter, YouTube and emails. The news in the internet spread without any restrictions unlike in the television and in radios. Most people with internet in the non-western world get to know about their political candidates in the internet. It is faster than the television and daily newspapers and it now acts as a medium in elections.
On the other hand, internet has a negative impact in the non-western nations. Kendzior, (2010) points out that some people use the internet in unhealthy way as they try to discourage people towards a certain candidate. For example, one can write anything in Facebook or on Twitter to friends without necessarily giving enough facts. It is also used to spread negative information and to manipulate events (Hermeking, 2005). Internet in politics has limitations in the non-western nations because it is not used by everyone. It is mostly used by the young educated people and the middle, upper income people. This shows that not everyone gets the messages on the internet about a candidate.
The internet is not only important in the Western cultures because it act as a medium for exchange, but it is also important for other non Western cultures because it helps them to strengthen and promote the societies both politically and culturally. Culturally, the internet has promoted faster communication between communities and thus turned the world into a global village (Poowin, 2010). It also promotes the sharing and exchange of different viewpoints from different people. The non-western nations have therefore improved their culture through the use of internet by getting used to modern ways of communication. The non-western nations have therefore improved their culture through the use of internet by getting used to modern ways of communication (Poowin, 2010).
Politically, the internet has strengthened the non-western nations in that there is more efficiency. Communication during campaign seasons has become easier and many people get to know about their candidates through the internet. It also allows for the free sharing of political opinions, thus promoting democracy (Hermeking, 2005).This has strengthened and improved the politics of non-western nations. While some argue that the internet has brought with it some negative aspects, like spreading of propaganda during campaigns, its positive impacts far outweigh the negative aspects (Kendzior, 2010).
Hermeking, M. (2005).Culture and internet consumption: Contributions from cross- cultural marketing and advertising.Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 11(1), article 10.
Kendzior, S. (2010). A Reporter Without Borders: Internet Politics and State Violence in Uzbekistan. Problems of Post-Communism, 57(1), p. 42- 45.
Leoussi, A. (2000). IT in Western Culture: A New Technology with Ancient Roots. [Online].Available from http://www.accessmylibrary.com/article-1G1-77434346/western-culture-new-technology.html.Viewed on 26 August 2011.
Poowin, B. (2010). Internet Politics: Internet as a Political Tool in Thailand. Canadian Social Science, 6(3), p. 68 -74.
Ward, I. (2011). Does the Internet Encourage Small Parties? A Case Study of the Minutiae of BC Politics, 1996-2009. Australian Journal of Political Science, 46(2), p. 230- 237