|Source: Bella The Brave on Unsplash|
53% of Americans Say the Internet Has Been Essential During the COVID-19 Outbreak and a large number of people from the lower-income group are worried about the digital divide and digital homework gap. Whatever 'homework gap' means.
We're now talking, working, doing homework, learning, watching, looking for references, read the news, shop, compare prices (...) all completely online.
Honestly, I can't imagine life without it right now.
I'll admit this much. Before this, I tune out of the internet. There are deep, dark moments when I feel like slamming my head onto my keyboard really hard and just chucking my smartphone out of the window,
Instead, I settle for merely silencing it or just putting it out of sight. For some peace of mind, you know.
This has earned me the ire of my family members who suddenly can't reach me or my clients or co-workers who started wondering, 'What's up her @zz?'.
With electric and water companies threatening to cut us off from the civilized world, I sometimes wonder if it is ethical at all, considering the situation we are all in right now, to cut off our internet access. Even if someone was unable to fork out their monthly payments.
Correct me if I am wrong. This is just rolling out as I am thinking it.
If landlords have shown mercy about rentals, what are those big tech firms doing cutting off internet access for people who are, say, staying in remote areas? They depend on the internet to connect them to essential services, government offices, family members, neighbors, friends, or their work places?
People now depend on internet access to find or keep their work and students need mobile data to complete their homework or join their compulsory Zoom online classes. Everything from reporting to submission of assignments have now been shifted online.
Don't you think there should be some form of shift in our perception towards the importance and usefulness of the internet to those who are secluded and need connectivity the most?
It's no longer just a luxury, it's a necessity.
And I suppose, that is why the Alliance for Affordable Internet was set up.
It recognizes that half of the world's population, while under the same threat of contracting a deadline virus, does not have internet access. While food, water, shelter, clothing, and a safe refuge tops the list of 'important things to have during a pandemic', I think we should not ignore the fact that without internet access, these communities will be largely disadvantaged.
The group is still reaching out and forming alliances in many other countries and has zeroed in on these countries.
In the meantime, thank goodness, for now, I still have the Internet and have been blazing the trails with Zoom calls, meetings, and phone calls. It's been fun, in all honesty.
Since I am often video-bombed by my kids going in and out of their rooms to the bathroom, to the kitchen, to the balcony, to the sofa, or just plain going in and out for water or some other reason, I decided to stop my call and join them (him, in this case), just for the heck of it.
Take care, stay safe, and be happy,