Subject details

  • Topics
    • Introduction: 'Who wants control?'
    • Political censorship vs. freedom of speech
    • Moral censorship vs. freedom of speech
    • Privacy and 'terms of use'
    • A right to privacy?
    • Harassment on the net
    • Introduction to regulation
    • The architecture of connection
    • Digital property and the network
    • Governing the net
    • Politics and power summary
  • Study resources
    • Instructional Methods
      • Audio/Video conferencing
      • Chat Rooms
      • Disscusion forum/Discussion Board
      • Online assignment submission
      • Podcasting/Leacture capture
      • Web links
    • Print Materials
      • Welcome letter
    • Online Materials
      • Resources and Links
      • Printable format materials
      • Online Assessment
      • Audio-Video streaming

At the completion of this subject students will be able to:

  1. demonstrate understanding of the way the internet is experienced as a network of both freedom and control with reference both to social and technical aspects of the internet
  2. analyse specific internet events and occurrences to gain broader insights into the operation of power and politics in internet governance in a global society
  3. demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between sources of authority (public, commercial, political, expert, users) in internet governance and the outcomes of decision-making about the internet
  4. present arguments concerning the socio-technological character of internet politics
  5. make conceptual contributions to the development of policy and regulation for effective internet governance.
  • Assignment 1 - Essay 1 (20%)
  • Assignment 2 - Essay 2 (40%)
  • Assignment 3 - Policy primer and commentary (40%)

Textbooks are subject to change within the academic year. Students are advised to purchase their books no earlier than one to two months before the start of a subject

Entry Requirements

Equivalent Subjects

You cannot enrol in this unit if you have successfully completed any of the following subject(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:

  • CUR-NET23

You must have successfully completed the following subject(s) before starting this subject:

Special requirements

No special requirements

This subject was previously known as Internet Politics and Power.

One enduring myth of the internet is that what we do there cannot be controlled. While this is not true, the internet does present new challenges and possibilities for regulation, producing new forms of freedom and constraint. In this subject you focus on the politics of internet power, via topics on censorship, privacy, security and harassment. You will explore how the internet is 'governed', considering technical, legal and economic reasons for regulatory decisions. Ultimately, you will come to understand how networked communications both create and challenge long-running political contests of freedom and control.

Further Information: List of topics is indicative and subject to minor change prior to the start of each Study Period.

Please Note:  If it’s your first time studying a Curtin University subject you’ll need to complete their compulsory ‘Academic Integrity Program’. It only takes two hours to complete online, and provides you with vital information about studying with Curtin University. The Academic Integrity Program is compulsory, so if it’s not completed your subject grades will be withheld.

Find out more about the Academic Integrity module.

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