With factories, offices, public places, transportation, schools are colleges shut down, and no clear picture of whether normal life would resume in 4 weeks or 4 months, it is the Internet that could make life go on. While it is necessary to keep an eye on fake news and the dangers of fake news causing panic, it is equally important to keep the Internet globally connected, perhaps even with directives to access providers NOT to disrupt connectivity to any user under any pretext together with a heightened awareness among Governments that everyone needs Internet, even to seek medical help, and more to preserve mass psychological well being.
“More Internet” here implies an approach that is on the other end of the tendency to lock down, it implies a greater willingness to keep more of the people of the world more connected, and to make news, educational, spiritual and entertainment content more available and also to think of more of curated streams for e.g, you tube recommendation, you tube curated streams, a better face book news stream etc… On the constructive / reconstruction front, Internet could bring together groups to collaborate on crisis management, economic reconstruction questions and could generate innovative ideas to solve problems.
The following is a post published in CircleID by the CircleID Reporter, referenced by Glenn McKnight in the Internet Society mailing list, with the title “Companies in the USA Take Connectivity Pledge Amid COVID-19 Crisis”. CircleID is an indispensable platform for the world’s Internet industry professionals where they come to connect, inform and be informed; The blog is widely read by Internet policy makers around the world across stakeholder groups.
Broadband and telephone service providers of all sizes in the US have signed on to a “Keep Americans Connected Pledge” aimed at maintaining connectivity for citizens amid disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic. For the next 60 days FCC has urged service providers to “(1) not terminate service to any residential or small business customers because of their inability to pay their bills due to the disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic; (2) waive any late fees that any residential or small business customers incur because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic; and (3) open its Wi-Fi hotspots to any American who needs them.” Close to 80 companies have confirmed to take the pledge, according to FCC.
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