Digital Divide

Jul 8th, 2008, in Internet, by

Indonesia still lags well behind its neighbours in proportion of people with internet access.

The General Manager of Telkom's Sumatera Division, M. Awaluddin, said in Medan on 30th June that the proportion of Indonesians who understood and used the internet was still very small compared to countries like Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, that the "digital divide" was still gaping.

In Malaysia, for example, school exams were already done online, or at least with computers, while Indonesia was still far from being ready to implement such a system.

Awaluddin denied the often heard proposition that the net was harmful to youngsters, instead saying that children in advanced countries used the internet to open up a whole new world of useful information. In Sumatra alone there were almost 10 million school age children, and he said Telkom, through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program, was committed to helping students gain access to the internet. republika


33 Comments on “Digital Divide”

  1. avatar Bule Harga says:

    The internet infrastructure is in desperate need of proliferation. How in the world will the poverty-stricken lower class (which is most of Indo) get a chance to get up and out? How will the average student be able to get access to collaborate with colleagues in the race to globalization? How will people be able to be inter-connected with the outside world in a way that will create jobs and opportunities to improve the average dismal life of the Inonesian? I blame the government. There is no central command that sees the value, let alone oversee such an effort to implement a strategy to create high speed bandwidth available to the major population of Indonesia. The internet cafes (minus the cafe) that do exist have such spotty or slow throughput that it’s nearly intolerable. If the investment climate was more ideal, competitors would be popping all over up to meet the demand of highly needed backbone infrastructure. Since there is no vision from the government, no strategy to fulfill, once again…the average person will not have the chance to get ahead.

  2. avatar Marisa says:

    Thanks for sharing this.

  3. avatar Harris says:

    Like any other muslim dictatorship, Indonesia fears Internet. Even self proclaimed WEB “experts” like the infamous Roy Suryo want to censor and limit the WEB in the country…

  4. avatar Purba Negoro says:

    Harris- you’re a dolt.

    Internet is censored- this is merely political pandering to the idiotic Muslim patries- which no one in their right minds wishes to ever be in a position of power.

    However proxy service is not only commonly known- but freely available and I am told by my pembantu yesterday- the wartel assistant provides them with proxy help if in trouble.

    The question regarding information technology is- is it truly necessary or even appropriate for the realities of the Indonesian rakyat.

    What is the social cost of computerisation or mechanisation- if it le3ads to formerly viable employees made redundant.

    What value is information, opinion and other trite Western fancies- if they are unable to process it into food or money?

    I fail to see the IT/Internet push as anything other than a sly economically motivated marketing drive for a new market .

    The three R’s built the Western nations- not computers.

  5. avatar Magmax says:

    Investing in internet infrastructure and access is not just a telecommunication investment, but an investment in education, in my opinion the best education investment the Indonesian government could make right now. Of course teachers and structured learning environments are important, but simply by giving children at all levels access to the internet, with it’s endless amounts of information and educational materials, the government would be making a huge leap towards getting all school children on an equal footing with their international peers. Children are much smarter than most of us give them credit for. If you simply give them access to information, it’s always amazing how much they can learn and absorb all on their own. As the creation of effective internet infrastructure is getting cheaper every day, and access is improving through programs such as the OLPC Project (One Laptop Per Child) which has made a wifi enabled laptop for about $100, there is no reason every child in Indonesia shouldn’t be able to have high speed internet access by 2012 if the proper resources were allocated now.

    The real problem is a government that believes that the wrong kind of information is dangerous and tries to manipulate and censor the internet. This kinds of backward governance will only hold back the children and welfare of the nation.

  6. avatar kwikbali says:

    With most of the world education now used computers and the internet, Indonesia need to improve its Internet infrastructure.

    In 5-10 years almost everything will be done using the computer and the internet, how could an Indonesian compete in the era of globalisation with other graduates and workers from other countries that are tech savvy (well at least better than our graduates). If Indonesia doesnt move fast to catch the gap, the wide division will be simply get to wide for us to catch-up.

  7. avatar Sighjay says:

    In 5-10 years almost everything will be done using the computer and the internet,

    In most of the world almost everything is already done online. Everything from all banking, getting a drivers license to ordering the groceries to booking the car in for a service, or getting a movie ticket or any business communication is done online.

    In Indonesia most companies websites don’t work, the bank websites look like they were put together a decade ago and online commerce is a non-event.

  8. avatar kau dan selingkuhanmu says:

    How can people who can’t even feed themselves 3 times a day use internet service? Indonesia have other things which is much more IMPORTANT to do than care about internet.

  9. avatar Armand says:

    Many people can’t afford to use internet services because it is still very expensive for Indonesian people.

  10. avatar HeavenlySword says:

    FPI uses internet to satisfy their sexual needs

  11. avatar Sighjay says:

    “How can people who can’t even feed themselves 3 times a day use internet service? Indonesia have other things which is much more IMPORTANT to do than care about internet.”

    Yes, but the point is that if Indonesia doesn’t keep up with the rest of the world they will, as years go by, be even less able to feed themselves 3 times a day. The tech divide is forming a new sub class in the 3rd world. The key to Indonesia pulling itself out of that is education and the internet is crucial to that. The future is IMPORTANT surely.

  12. avatar kau dan selingkuhanmu says:

    Hahaha..LOL then you surely dont know the people of indonesia very well 🙂
    how can a person who even has problem with his “daily meal” still cares about his “beloved technology” ?

    I think its already quite difficult for all citizen in indonesia to have their own handphone ? Everyone has their own internet access ? Still needs a long way to go..

  13. avatar Sighjay says:

    No you still miss the point and the bigger picture completely..I know that it’s hard for many in RI to get their three meals a day but if the country is unable to move ahead into the 21st century it will become harder and harder and the country will fall further and further behind the rest of the world.

    Already many African countries are passing it in educational standards and China is taking much of the manufacturing away from Indonesia. Indonesia really needs to change radically to survive. It should be the leader in SEA rather than the sick old man..it has the resources and the population pool, but it lacks the leadership to move it ahead. The key is education, education and more education and the government leadership & will there is sorely lacking. The internet or whatever it’s developing into, because it’s changing so fast, is a big part of that.

    You are talking about the present and the past at grass-roots level, I’m thinking about the future, and it Indonesia doesn’t, it’s in big trouble.

  14. avatar kau dan selingkuhanmu says:

    So the problems are still the same, again and again :
    EDUCATION. then as i said before : indonesia have other much more IMPORTANT things to do.. And of course, education is one of it.

    Oh yeah.. let me tell you one more thing, many poor children in indonesia still haven’t SD (Sekolah Dasar : Elementary School) graduated yet, due to our economic problem. They can’t even operate computer.. then talking about internet ? What FUTURE did you mean ? If 10 years later of course we can, how about now ? I’m sorry thats still too early for us.

  15. avatar Sighjay says:

    You are still not looking at the bigger picture. Sadly it’s not about the individual cases right now that you keep on pointing to, it’s about improving the nation’s educational health as a whole, and the net is a big part of that. The key to improving Indonesia’s economic future is education. Singapore, Malaysia, Korea and China all worked that out. Education kills corruption (or at least helps), it provides an economic base for everything including getting future generations of kids through school and providing the nation a future

    That children are not leaving SD (yes I know what it is) with the basic skills most kids around the world get is a huge problem..so what do you do about it? You seem to be saying that it is what is so we need to accept that. That philosphy seems to be nationwide but needs to change for the country to survive. But the national leadership isn’t there to ensure it does. Indonesia has one of the lowest % of GDP spends on education in the world…and leadership with a mindset stuck in a past generation.

  16. avatar kau dan selingkuhanmu says:

    Sighjay.. its quite tiresome to discuss with u about digital divide in indonesia. Looks like, both of us share totally different opinion. Here is some of my opinion to close our dicussion.

    -100 years later called future.
    -10 years later also called Future.
    -Even next month also can be called as Future. So, which future did you mean ?
    10 years later of course we can do it, if our government really take this seriously n everything goes smoothly, we can even make our whole technology at least able to catch up with singapore’s technology within 3 years, if our government really seriously want to do so.

    But, thats for the future. If we want to do it right know its too early for us. (my personal opinion based on Indonesia’s current situation)

    i dont want to take a look at bigger picture since its related to technology. I choose to mention about our poor economic group because for me, they’re the most important n needy group in our country ? How bout our mid-high economic class group, conglomerates, even billionaires family in indonesia, they could really be able to cempete with other HM in other country, even south america n europe. But for what ? They are rich, n definitely independent, they dont need our help at all. We should focus on the our poor economic people first. They need to get helped or else, they can only be blue collar worker in their lifetime no improvement at all.

  17. avatar Bule Harga says:

    @kau

    Kenapa kmu tidak tahu kmu harus (Why don’t you must) modernize with the times? I am American and I have kewan2 (friends) in Indonesia and I believe I know Indons well enough to understand that food does indeed need to come first. So does education. So does the internet. Being ‘too early’ for you is a mindset that you have to overcome. E-commerce, education, and the means to get ahead, and yes, even get food, is possible thru the internet. Not the internet by itself, per se, but as a means to an end. Use it as a tool to further the good in your society. The connectivity enablement because of the now level-playing field the internet produces cannot be watched as it speeds along by. Sekolah anak2 (school kids) should get access to the internet as they would a desk. Getting laptops into their hands are possible with the right subsidies. Indonesia gov’t could improve the infrastructure of the internet (if they made it a priority) and make getting online cheap, if not free. Singapore already has free wireless throughout the island and at all public computer terminals at the airport. It will be worse for the Indo population NOT get clued into the world thru the internet and the way it has (and still is) changing the way the world interacts and does business. With some creativity and entrepreneurship, Indonesia orang2 (people) can improve their lives. Not using it would be a loss. My two cents (brought to you by the internet).

  18. avatar kau dan selingkuhanmu says:

    @Bule Harga :

    Everyone want fast, instant way for everything. honestly, is that possible ?

    I dont care about the fast-changing world. i care about indonesia as this is the country where i was born. Everychildren owns private laptop for themselves ? Haha.. u could only make our country’s kidnapping children crime increase(so rich, even kids got laptop how bout their parents ? )

    I didnt say i don’t want to change. N Rome wasnt built in a day, so we do need TIME. And under my expectation, at least we still need 3 years to that. ( you can’t expect it now, as u see).
    Education,Poverty, Public safety should be our main goal.
    A free internet access in a whole country made by our government ? still a long way to go bro..

  19. avatar Sighjay says:

    kau, I think it’s better if I give up on this. How many people and children will suffer while you wait, while you miss the point, while you say “its too early for us.”..because if you keep on saying things like that it will be too late for Indonesia, as it almost is.

    You need to think a little more laterally in all of this..Bule Harga is right and makes the same points I do. Indonesia simply doesn’t have the luxury of time.

    When is the future? It’s now and onwards.

  20. avatar Syonan says:

    First and foremost, how many of you guys are Indonesians & foreigners posting comments on internet usage in Indonesia. It seems that nobody really understand what we Indonesians really want in life, for us who live in the country side. Do understand this that the internet is not really important and further it doesn’t bring in an income. What is the most important thing is to have an income for the family so that the living standard improves. Hence to say, to us country side folks, the internet is not that really important, it is an entertainment and nothing more. However, I do understand, the need of the internet is there, such as when I need to extract something on the Undang-Undang and may be to catch up on an important news that affects Indonesia on a whole. Lastly, if you are a foreigner and don’t really understand Indonesia and Indonesians at all, don’t pass comments that is not correct.

  21. avatar Mas Martin says:

    Let me join in this forum on the occasion of this important topic,…
    I am from the Central European country (Rep. Ceko) trying to catch up with our wealthier EU neighbours, have relatively good experience from Indonesia (2 years living both in the mid-sized city and travelling in the countryside, from Sabang to Biak). Half of my family is Indonesian, lower-middle class… I work in the economics-related profession in the public sector.

    “Kau”, you really miss the point. I know how the people struggle to meet their daily needs. But I believe that it is possible that poor people eventually lift themselves up out of their misery.

    How can they do it? (or, how can this be done?) I don’t want to start a detailed and boring discussion… but, some elements are here: leadership + role-models, education, openness, transparency + enforceable rules, investment in infrastructure…

    I think that Indonesian government has actually some smart and honest people (Sri Mulyani, Mari Pangestu, Boediono…), but they make quite slow progress, partly because there are local interests (parts of the elite), resisting any changes and profiting from the status quo. It is easier to cut the trees and mine the coal than support the education, for example.

    Back to internet infrastructure: it is really an essential element to enable any progress of the society (including – in the longer term – the poor farmer you give as an example). Perhaps you have heard how smart middle-class Indians are succeeding in software development and many other professions? India is still much poorer than Indonesia on average, but some parts of the country are really dynamic and globally-linked. Much of this development has been enabled by investment in telecommunications. In Indonesia, this element is missing. My sister-in-law in Surabaya can certainly afford 3-meals per day, works as an English teacher, but she can access Internet perhaps just 1 hour / week. She can barely open and reply 1 mail in an hour.

    This silly argument about “not being able to access Internet if you can’t eat properly” is really a chicken-and-egg game. There are not only absolutely poor and absolutely rich people. There are millions of “normal” people who need gradual improvement – maybe in 3 years, as you say, not overnight. If they have some basic training and computer access, they can access the information about the prices, find lots of free information about “how-to-do things”, current events including local ones, fill official forms, pay PLN, buy pulsa, browse train schedules, whatever. Internet gives people tremendous opportunity to educate themselves (not only play games and browse p*rn) and create their own content (promote themselves, for example), even run small businesses. Very useful for those who are ready to take an advantage of this. Again, all this needs leadership from the top of the society/ goverment. If you have lots of investment in the mobile communications (ugly white-and-red towers grow like mushrooms), you can invest also in data networks. Typically, these two can even share the same infrastructure. Data can be as profitable business as voice and Smss.

    In my opinion, internet in Indonesia is impeded because the lack of commitment, leadership and failure to see this as a problem. Maybe the progress of IT networks is even actively discouraged.

    Believe it or not, education (assisted by internet, among others) will support the productivity and growth, and it will take looong time… but there is no other way. It happened in my country and believe me, we were in real trouble in the 90s after the collapse of socialism.

    The lack of investment in the infrastructure/ education is even more striking, because the country is doing (fiscally) quite well.

  22. avatar hendro says:

    It’s coming. The govt is working hard to mend the digital divide and provide internet access to all citizens. The Palapa Ring project is underway, connecting some 400 cities all over Indonesia to the backbone of the internet. Its probably among the biggest project we ever have, with more than 4 trillions poured into its first phase only.

    I am sometimes also desperate to see the slow adoption of the internet in Indonesia. Its partly due to lack of infrastructure but partly also due to education/awareness. Middle class Indonesians mostly have handphones with GPRS access, but a small percentage of them actually use it. They probably don’t know how to activate or have a perceive need to use it.
    But believe me, its a matter of time. See the proliferation of cellphones in the recent years, it wasn’t there ten years ago.

  23. avatar kau dan selingkuhanmu says:

    Did you guys know how many poor economic class people in indonesia ? I think at least 30million.
    Did you guys know even mid-economic class people in indonesia are still difficult to have an private handphone for everyone of them ?
    Did you guys know the fee of internet access in indonesia ?
    Did you guys know moslems in indonesia still forbid children to use internet due to sex/porn negative effect ?
    Corruption,Education,Poverty,Country safety are the main problem we are facing right know. And we can focus on digital divide problem ONLY after we’ve cleared our main problem first.

    My personal advice for foreigner who cares about indonesia, if u’re citizen of common wealth country, then u should use your well economic power to help your friends who’s still struggled in poverty that lives in the other part of land in this worid, instead of discussing internet problem here?

  24. avatar kau dan selingkuhanmu says:

    My last words,
    i would motivate all my friend in indonesia to work harder, harder, n harder to support their own family. Instead telling them to spend their time on internet and simply do nothing.

    I’ve seen many people spending their day by sitting in front of computer and play computer games, internet chatting in their home and even in internet cafe, everyday. No productivity at all.

  25. avatar Bule Harga says:

    @ kau

    Some of your questions and my responses:

    “Did you guys know the fee of internet access in indonesia ?”

    Outrageously expensive. Already suggested gov’t to subsidize (Thanks Hendro for the Palapa Ring project update!).

    “Did you guys know moslems in indonesia still forbid children to use internet due to sex/porn negative effect ?”

    Show me in the Qaran where is states that. Parents are cautioned to watch their kids’ internet time as they would any other activity. There are some filters available too ISPs can provide.

    “Corruption,Education,Poverty,Country safety are the main problem we are facing right know. “…And we can focus on digital divide problem ONLY after we’ve cleared our main problem first.”

    This can’t be looked at as an ‘either-or’ scenario. It must be looked at as ‘along-with’ these other issues. Not having easy access to the internet is a main problem.

    “My personal advice for foreigner who cares about indonesia, if u’re citizen of common wealth country, then u should use your well economic power to help your friends who’s still struggled in poverty that lives in the other part of land in this world, instead of discussing internet problem here?”

    Point well taken. I am from an economically-developed country. I do have friends who struggle and I do provide money to help with their food, education and eventually laptop and internet. They live in the kampung in Central Java…and I care for them very much. And I will discuss internet problems until they have the internet. Not talking about it accomplishes nothing. Must be the opinionated and vocal American Bule in me 🙂

    @ Mas Martin

    Thanks for your relevant points about India and the internet / software industry. Also kudos to the comments, “Internet gives people tremendous opportunity to educate themselves (not only play games and browse p*rn) and create their own content (promote themselves, for example), even run small businesses.”

  26. avatar jaka says:

    kau dan selingkuhanmu said:

    Oh yeah.. let me tell you one more thing, many poor children in indonesia still haven’t SD (Sekolah Dasar : Elementary School) graduated yet, due to our economic problem. They can’t even operate computer.. then talking about internet ? What FUTURE did you mean ? If 10 years later of course we can, how about now ? I’m sorry thats still too early for us.

    So true for the first point (SD). Even middle-classers in Jakarta do not believe if I tell them so. “What? ngga lulus SD, hari gini?”, so they said. In (sad) fact, a “nongkrong” friend of mine had to struggle alone with money and birocracy to obtain “Ujian persamaan” SD, SMP, in order to achieve his dream to enter the police school. And this is just five years ago. If only I could have helped him.

    Providing internet access is good, but let the public do it (by, e.g., not letting TELKOM plays alone). The government better focuses itself on diminishing our very embarrassing reality: lack of education and poverty.

  27. avatar Sighjay says:

    Providing internet access is good, but let the public do it (by, e.g., not letting TELKOM plays alone). The government better focuses itself on diminishing our very embarrassing reality: lack of education and poverty.

    That’s the scary and sad thing for me, kau and the rest of you arguing this..you simply can’t see this is exactly the same thing. It truly is, and until you can grasp that, it’s a problem that is keeping Indonesia poor and hungry. I really think you are missing the revolution that has happened globally (not just in the west but across the planet)..the digital world is so much more than “spend their time on internet and simply do nothing”. People can work as hard as they wish, and Indonesians are regarded as very hard workers across Asia but it they don’t open the door for future generations then you are condemning them to always be poor and struggling for three meals.

    @Hendro, yes I’m aware of the The Palapa Ring and it’s a great project that shows that someone can think beyond the circle of ‘we are poor, you don’t understand us’ litany which is so self defeating and dangerous for Indonesia.

  28. avatar Mas Martin says:

    People can work as hard as they wish, and Indonesians are regarded as very hard workers across Asia but it they don’t open the door for future generations then you are condemning them to always be poor and struggling for three meals.

    Yes, you hit the nail on its head. All too often the people in Indonesia talk about the need of „bekerja keras“, exploiting the fact that Indonesia is „kaya hasil bumi“, but fail to see that large part of their possible future prosperity lies in increasing productivity, efficiency, innovation etc. for their own future. Supporting poor people – yes, the wealthy people/ nations (I do not consider myself “wealthy”, by the way) can support some needy poor people, but transfers of cash are not the efficient tool for improving the living standards (sometimes, just on the contrary, because it creates dependency).

    Unless the education („human capital“) is improved, and internet is the most efficient tools for this (although not the only one!), they will struggle.

    Internet can help even with e-learning, even on SD or SMP level… Blocking internet due to some p*rn content equals to pressumption of guilt. By the way, for „Kau“…. it really does increase productivity in the long-term… it is not an empty slogan, economic laws are the same in Europe, India or Indonesia. You have „information at your fingertips“, as Bill Gates used to say… But education must bring also an awareness, how to utilize the information, how to look for it, how to recognize what is relevant and what is irrelevant… people in Indonesia generally use „publicly available“ information very little, don’t read books, rely on the „word-of-mouth“ so far…

    Education surely increases opportunity … even in Indonesia, despite all the problems.
    We are not speaking about improving Internet access in the next week, but we are talking about the mindset needed for the future of the country, lifting itself from the poverty, from the problems created by the growing population and limited resources available.

    Last, but not least, internet is not so expensive even in Indonesia when you compare it with outrageous prices for mobile communication – a minute call from Jakarta to Medan (different operator) would cost the same amount as 1 hour in Warnet (3-4 000 Rp).

    This just came to my mind : WARNET – YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED 🙂

  29. avatar Sighjay says:

    @Mas Martin,
    absolutely.

    A couple of quick examples. In my business here in Indonesia many many people I deal with have limited IT skills, even in bigger companies. Last week I got an email from a guy who wrote it in excel putting a word in each cell. He then added it as an attachment to a blank email. I replied..he did the same thing again, and again. He was the marketing head guy.

    Now I’m tolerant of such things but if you put him and his company up against a Chinese firm selling the same item internationally…Indonesians lose jobs.

    Then we have the voluminous dead sites that exist in Indonesian marketing. We go to trade fairs, get cards for Indonesian firms. About 50% of the links on them don’t work. Indonesians lose jobs. Just putting url on a card is not enough as most international commerce is now conducted online, you need to have an online presence to compete, to be found.

    Invoicing is still done here in a non-computer readable style (the IV/HBN/06/2008 type thing)..it intensely frustrates international clients and one of our clients has got very grumpy about it on a big job so we re-number paperwork. If we don’t, Indonesians lose jobs.

    And so on……..

  30. avatar Purba Negoro says:

    What a load of utter bullsh*t. SOrry, there is no other way to describe it.

    Explain why Sighjay, in the 1960’s the US had a higher GDP per capita ration than today- despite computerisation ad internet being non-existent?

    Explain too, how without this wonder-drug, cure-all internet- how did so mant American companies became multinations before the 1980′ and widespread computer usage?

    So- please explain why most Westerners still prefer to shop and bank physically in person?

    What about the total insecurity of internet- especially in a hostile hacker enviromnment like Asia?

    There is a reason for everything- though that reason may be obscured to simpletons.

    Do you realise how much credit-card fraud occurs in Indonesia simply via a legitimate transaction be hijacked currently?

    Why do foreign banks such as Citibank, Standard Chartered, HSBC, ABN-AMRO, not to mention large national banks such as BNI and BRI. Because we have expert evaluated the situation and decided it is inherently too risky and the possibility of loss, fraud and theft is too high.

    Where on earth to such computer hackers originate? Neighbouring Malaysia and Singapore, not to mention mainland China and Hong Kong.

    We hire foreign experts to advise us on such matters- including those from Cisco and Sun, yet there are external hacking experts who are as well-trained as our own security foreign consultants.

    I know as one somewhat involved, BNI invested 6 months of analysis before it decided to go ahead with its online trading system- which was created by a leading US consultant.

    Do you honestly think we Indonesians are so backward that we have never performed cost-benefit and risk-management analyses?

    The security risk element is far too much a danger.

    All we need to confirm sighjkay is a twit peddling an obvious commercial agenda is to hear idiotic buzzword tech-bubble speak like “paradigm” and “synergy”.

    We have heard exactly the same imperative call to internet etc as we heard in the tech-bucbble of 1990 and from such luminaries as Enron.

    Furthermore Laptops for all is yet another obvious NGO tactic on total external reliance- just like USAID and Africa (African domestic grass-roots agricultural system collapses as deomstic food cannot compete with market saturation of free food- hence generational dependence on food aid).

    Sorry, we know all your dirty tricks. Like subverting our democracy in 1965, your “keep-up-with the Jones” top push a commercial agenda for a new tech consumer marketwon’t work on us.

    And shame on you for peddling it to the poorest.

    What happens if the internet plays up? Who will fix it?
    Who pays for the repaitrs? who pays for the necessary training for repairmen and technicians?
    What if these crappy laptops break or become obsolete- how will villagers fund their repair or upgrade?

    Why does the Indonesian State have to subsidise this US tech market agenda through paying for expensive, unnecessary and projected under capacity infrastructure?

    Surely, if these tech companies were so benevolent and internet was such a necessary panacea- why do the ISP’s and relevant tech companies subsidise such requisite infratstructure- themsleves- free to end user?

    As usual- these IT snake-oil peddlers and carpet-baggers are extremely shy to put their money where there mouth is.

    No- simple answer is Internet is essentially unnecessary.

    Fax and phone more than suffice- they are more reliable- and everyone accepts it worldwide no expensive upgrades needed.

    And guess what? I have home and office broadband and I think internet is still 95% sh*t, essentially useless, buggy and unreliable BUT created NO new business.

    I paraphrase our Hero Sukarno, “go to hell USA with your IT!”

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