View Poll Results: Should information be free?

Voters
23. You may not vote on this poll
  • All information should be free (i.e. paid for with tax dollars)

    11 47.83%
  • People should be able to vote regarding what types of information should be free

    0 0%
  • 3. Only info related to social sciences and human biology/medicine should be free to the public

    4 17.39%
  • No information should be free unless the publisher/owner allows it

    8 34.78%
  • Everyone should have to pay for all types of information

    0 0%
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Thread: Should knowledge be free?

  1. #21
    Educator

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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by TNAR View Post
    This won't be the answer you're looking for but it's the only one I can conscientiously give.

    Government policy should never be so powerful as to negatively affect the daily lives of individuals as a result of popular or political support. In other words, portions of the citizenry should never have the power to forcefully take property from others or coerce them into certain actions.

    As such, it should make little difference in our daily lives whether Randy Republican, David Democrat, Larry Libertarian, or Steve Socialist is our President, Senator, Representative, Governor, Mayor, et cetera. In turn, there should never be any specific piece of information which is so valuable as to make a noticeable impact on voting results or individual freedom.

    What sort of information are you referring to specifically? Perhaps I am missing the point you are attempting to make.
    Being a student of the social sciences, I know that there is information that can only be access via purchase, which, if shared with all citizens, would likely influence (if people understood that information) how people make public policy decisions.

    To me, the specific information is not as important as the concept.

  2. #22
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Can you give an example of the "specific information" to which you refer?

  3. #23
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by grip View Post
    Because it's where society says we can't afford anymore and not everyone needs to be a professional.
    This is largely changing. More and more, every does need to be a professional.

    I don't know about information being free, but it should never be restricted. Access to information needs to be unfettered, and unfiltered. If you're asking whether or not we should fund Wikipedia with taxes... actually, I see absolutely nothing wrong with that. Though Wikipedia seems to be doing just fine on its own. Even if is it not publicly funded, it's publicly maintained. It's operated by and for the public at large, and that is the correct way to collect and transmit the general body of knowledge. Not everyone needs to know everything, and no one ever could. But anyone should be able to know anything they want.
    Liberté. Égalité. Fraternité.

  4. #24
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by TNAR View Post
    I must have missed that poll!

    Unfortunately, our education system is so engrained into our beliefs that it nearly takes a miracle for someone to consider alternatives. I think this poll somewhat reveals a bit of the problem we face: the public and regulated education system pushes information onto students but fails miserably at bestowing knowledge. I seriously believe we need to take a long and realistic look at our education system and compare it to our desires and means.
    Poll? Who the hell said it was polled, hahaha. Most of the social norms that exist today developed over time. Ask The College of William & Mary why they offered a higher education beyond public.

    They try to teach, which is a form of bestowing knowledge through information.
    Einstein, "science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind."

  5. #25
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by TNAR View Post
    Can you give an example of the "specific information" to which you refer?
    Alright, for example, certain foods and or drugs have been shown to be better or worse for human health. Should all information regarding this be available to the public or only part of it?

  6. #26
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by MusicAdventurer View Post
    So what option did you pick? Or which would be closest to what you believe? Do you believe we should have informed or ignorant voters?
    We are going to have ignorant voters regardless of the information available on the internet. Don't make the mistake of assuming that easy availability of information will result in a better-informed population. You and I are interested in politics, thus we post in forums such as this, and we google subjects, and read opinions and articles. The majority of the public, and even a good number of voters, are just marginally interested, especially in the really critical issues.

    Don't get me wrong- I'm not in favor of government intervention regarding internet information available- I just don't think it would result in a less-informed voting population.
    Last edited by lizzie; 01-19-12 at 12:48 AM.
    "God is the name by which I designate all things which cross my path violently and recklessly, all things which alter my plans and intentions, and change the course of my life, for better or for worse."
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  7. #27
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paschendale View Post
    This is largely changing. More and more, every does need to be a professional.

    I don't know about information being free, but it should never be restricted. Access to information needs to be unfettered, and unfiltered. If you're asking whether or not we should fund Wikipedia with taxes... actually, I see absolutely nothing wrong with that. Though Wikipedia seems to be doing just fine on its own. Even if is it not publicly funded, it's publicly maintained. It's operated by and for the public at large, and that is the correct way to collect and transmit the general body of knowledge. Not everyone needs to know everything, and no one ever could. But anyone should be able to know anything they want.
    I agree with this sadly. There were more trades and high wage labor positions at one time but you can barely live on what they pay now.
    Einstein, "science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind."

  8. #28
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by MusicAdventurer
    Alright, for example, certain foods and or drugs have been shown to be better or worse for human health. Should all information regarding this be available to the public or only part of it?
    It already is available to the public. Places like the Mayo Clinic or WebMD specialize in this sort of thing and generally offer the information free of charge.

    Speaking of drugs though, many man-made pharmaceuticals are proven to have many nasty side-effects which are often glossed over. Compare that to certain plants which have been growing in the wild for thousands of years which don't have nearly the same number of adverse affects. In this case, not only is there a cost to information but there is an attempt to suppress information.

    I don't intend to hijack this thread into some tangent, I am simply trying to point out that freedom of information is generally the norm and only regulation can stifle it.

  9. #29
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by TNAR View Post
    It already is available to the public. Places like the Mayo Clinic or WebMD specialize in this sort of thing and generally offer the information free of charge.
    Well ... that is only a certain amount of information and the opinion based on the results of certain studies - in science, we know nothing, theories can only be supported or disproved, never proved and thus there are never any true "facts" (as far as science is concerned)

    Quote Originally Posted by TNAR View Post
    Speaking of drugs though, many man-made pharmaceuticals are proven to have many nasty side-effects which are often glossed over. Compare that to certain plants which have been growing in the wild for thousands of years which don't have nearly the same number of adverse affects. In this case, not only is there a cost to information but there is an attempt to suppress information.
    Yes this is true ... and this is related to what I am referring to ... if you've ever attending college and perused scientific articles, you will find that libraries only allow you to access certain articles, other, groundbreaking or contradictory articles are often not available unless one pays for them ... it's an academic sort of regulation/suppression

    Quote Originally Posted by TNAR View Post
    I don't intend to hijack this thread into some tangent, I am simply trying to point out that freedom of information is generally the norm and only regulation can stifle it.
    Yes, I understand what you are saying... however, we are only told what we can access freely on the web and what associations feel we should see and learn

    Why shouldn't we be allowed access to the original documents that lead such sites, like Mayo Clinic, to list said info?

  10. #30
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    Re: Should knowledge be free?

    Quote Originally Posted by MusicAdventurer View Post
    This poll and discussion forum is in response to the recent SOPA and PIPA issue (see below for a quote from wikipedia):


    Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    for more info visit this site:

    SOPA and PIPA - Learn more - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    To broaden this issue, should all information be free to citizens, or only certain types of information?

    For example, social science type information, i.e. psychological, sociological, political science, social work, etc., and medical articles (research related etc.) are often not available to citizens without a charge. Much of this information could be used by the general public in order to inform better public policy, however, most citizens have to pay to view the info. Should part of our taxes go toward freeing up this type of information for the general public? Should only those who can afford it, be allowed to know critical information such as this? Or should we keep citizens uneducated? Would this even make a difference? What kinds of limits (if any) should be placed on how educated we allow our citizens to become without charge? Is it democratic to keep citizens ignorant, thus limiting their ability to make educated votes? Why or why not?
    You stacked the deck, so I am not voting. Thank you..
    Last edited by FreedomFromAll; 01-19-12 at 01:08 AM.

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