Is There a Human Right to the Internet?

Brian Skepys


This paper argues that there is not a human right to the Internet. It presents five commonly made arguments for a human right to the Internet, and it shows how they all fail. This paper approaches the discussion from a position that holds human rights as instrumentally necessary things for membership in a political community and goes on to argue that although Internet access is instrumentally valuable for membership, it should not be seen as a human right in and of itself because it is not necessary for membership. Instead, its denial should be seen as a potentially urgent threat to a more basic list of human rights, namely the human right to assembly, where there may exist negative duties not to cause urgent threats at a human rights level.

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Journal of Politics and Law ISSN 1913-9047 (Print) ISSN 1913-9055 (Online)  Email:

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