The “internet”, also known as the “world-wide web” is a bi-polar electronic Leviathan that has erupted on the world scene in the past two decades. In its benevolent manifestations, it has enormously increased and expedited access to useful information of all sorts, increased global awareness of myriad events, facilitated family and commercial communication across national boundaries in the blink of an eye and helped topple dictators; it is probably fair to say that its advent is of no less significance than the invention of the printing press.
However, just as the printing press has been put to odious use from time to time, the internet has its own Jekyll and Hyde nature: it is a near certainty that future generations will look back at these decades, obsessed as we are with the twin behemoths of “reality” television and the “ooh, look at me, I must tell the world what I had for breakfast” narcissism of social media and at the billions of hours thus lost to a near psychotropic electronic escape from any useful pursuit and wonder if Aldous Huxley only got a few details wrong in Brave New World. For the purposes of this case, the relevance of the internet is its unpoliced “garbage in/garbage out” potential and its free-market-of-ideas potential to lure in otherwise pleasant and unsuspecting folk with all manner of absurdity and silliness.
R. v. Duncan
2012 CarswellOnt 17266
Ontario Court of Justice