How connected are you? If you’re like me, you might often feel you’re too connected and should probably just step away from the phone, smart phone, computer, tablet device, etc., etc… and take a nice long technology-free walk.
But I also have no desire to give up these ever-increasing connections. I get to chat with people all over the planet instantly. I can browse news from journalists far and wide, and sometimes find out things even before the networks in the U.S. catch on. And I can watch videos, read stories, hear music and learn new things from friends, and sometimes people I’ve never even met from places near, far and in-between.
I’m also pretty sure that the faster we all get connected, the faster we can solve the world’s problems because two heads are always better than one, and well, if seven billion of us can really collaborate and put our brains together, we might actually figure out some stuff. (Okay, it’s probably going to be the kids because they are already showing up the adults in way too many ways but at least we adults could help them out a little!)
However, although we are seemingly bolting as fast as we can towards that goal of 100% internet connection throughout the planet, there are still many places where people don’t have access.
One country that is making great progress but still has a good distance to go is the Philippines. Just a few years ago in 2007, according to the World Bank, only 6% of the population had access to the web. The latest figure is close to 33% (with 27% also being connected to Facebook!) but, especially in rural areas, there’s still a lot to be done.
Because internet connection is seen as a need but not a basic one (and also because telecommunication companies are already doing their darndest to get into these new markets) there aren’t a lot of obvious ways to “give” the internet though doing so can have a huge and positive impact on people’s lives.
So I checked instead with Kiva and found a businesswoman in the Philippines who wants to expand her internet cafe helping people in her rural community. I’ve added my little bit now and, fingers crossed, if she gets the loan, maybe we’ll have a few more people on board to help out on solving some of the big issues we’re all facing!
Thanks for stopping by,
PS. Great recent piece here on exactly how telecoms infrastructure is driving new growth in Africa.