don't forgot that "the Internet" also has, and has had, useful applications
e.g. for provision of health, business, weather, agricultural information
provision in rural areas in the Third World - academics/researchers are
prob. now only a minority of users of the Net.
At 02:50 PM 10/05/96 -0400, you wrote:
>It is a very good idea to launch this kind of debates and they will be
>constructive only if the participants exchange objective criticisms
>instead of misinterpreting one another's suggestions.
>Communiction is the foundation of technology and internet would be a good
>thing for African technologcal development. However, I think Africa needs
>basic infrastructure such as roads, simple telephone etc.more than it
>needs the internet. For those who know our continent,it may take you days
>from your home town/village to the capital city, and several hours/days
>before you have access to a telephone line. Therefore, internet cannot be
>a national priority at all because maybe 5% to 10% of the population
>would benefit from it and its influence in rural development would be
>insignificant. Nevertheless, internet is needed in Universites, research
>On Thu, 2 May 1996, Valerie Bruce wrote:
>> Cliff wrote:
>> >Do you mean to suggest that if people in Africa gain the ability to publish
>> >their own web pages they will publish the same stuff we're used to so far
>> >because their education is based on Western principles?
>> I didn't say that, but probably. The internet is certainly Western
>> dominated. But how do I know?
>> Brushing past the
>> >mistaken notion that all educated Africans are educated in the West,
>> I didn't say "all".
>> are we
>> >to assume that Africans are so shallow as to be wholly formed by their
>> >education alone? Can we assume that of Americans?
>> Did I say "shallow"? No. Nor did I suggest it.
>> Actually, one's education has a great deal of influence on onself, usually.
>> An important part of the formal education process is to socialize the
>> individual to be a responsible contributing member of society, one who obeys
>> the rules, and participates positively. In classrooms societal values and
>> appropriate behaviors are taught. This is hopefully reinforced in the home.
>> People who are born in one culture and spend their earlier years there, and
>> who then go into a totally different culture in their latter school years,
>> are influenced by both cultures.
>> >What is the problem with the "elites in gov't and in universities" having
>> >access to the Internet?
>> It's not a problem. As you say, that was the case in the west until
>> recently. But
>> some people - and I said "some" - believe that if African countries got
>> internet access then all citizens would have access to it, and, in fact, the
>> internet would solve the problems of Africans, and the continent would
>> emerge into the 21st century. Some people believe the internet is the
>> savior of all the African people. That the internet is what the average
>> peasant needs. I'm talking about now, not 20 years from now. Who knows
>> what the situation will be like in 20 years. Or even 5 years.
>> Valerie Bruce
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