I am writing this entry from my local library because my home internet is dead, and my phone is not allowing me to post updates. Instead of complaining, I am going to try and say what a different things, like free internet, does for communities.
When I was at school internet was slow and expensive, hence I never had it. The local council started to invest in computers, to provide people with the internet, who couldn’t afford it. They did this by equipting most local libraries with PCs. It gave so many people the access to a whole world that they couldn’t see before. They could send emails, apply for jobs, shop online and learn about so many things.
Since I first used these library computers 15 years ago, my home got broadband, and a laptop that works (kinda). The local library, which once housed 2 computers, now has 12. The library runs classes to help people get to grip with computers and the internet. Allow pensioners send emails to relatives who live on the other side of the world. And, people who struggle with unemployment, get help on how to apply for jobs or type up a CV. It’s made computers so much accessible. You no longer need to spend a fortune on a PC and a home broadband connection.
I remember when I was at school, there was a few internet cafes that opened. Where you would paid £5 for an hour of computer access. Obviously, times have changed, the government helped. You can now rent public computers for an hour a time, and all you need is a library card. I think this is awesome, but I don’t know how widespread this is. My local council is Fife Council, and they have made it a priority to make computers and the internet accessible to all local residents, for free.
It’s times like this, where I take stock, and am thankful for where I live. And it isn’t just because my own technology is so tempermental.