Monday, April 6, 2009

What are the major themes: Afro@Digital

This films' message to the audience was about the long awaited technological revolution finally reaching people in Africa. The use of mobile phones and the internet has become a lot more widespread in the 21st century in under-developed African nations, especially through the availability of internet cafes and pay as you go mobile phones. This film gave the sense that although Africans are disadvantaged in many ways technologically and in education, many are very willing to learn how to use the technology to benefit themselves, even if not able to use it to it's maximum potential. Hopefully by connecting Africa to the rest of the world at fast speeds that the internet and phones allow, this might bring about more changes in the way Africans view themselves and the world and allow them to strive for more positive changes in their countries. The question of what would Africans need the internet for is ludicrous; what does anyone need the internet for? I do not think of the internet as being a luxury that only people with stable economies and governments should be allowed. 

That being said, I spent 5 months living in Cape Town, South Africa last year, and personally I thought cell phones were used in the city as much as in American cities for all races, although very few homes nonwhite had access to the internet. Cape Town is a first world city in a third world country, and not very representative of the country as a whole or Africa in general. Even just outside the city in the townships (shanty towns) there was barely electricity and no running water. 

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