Life Without Internet in 21st century? Surely Not!

The other day I overheard a conversation between two young people, both in their 20th. The girl was trying to understand the concept of Facebook, and the guy was trying (without much success) to explain it to her.

You've Got Mail

You’ve Got Mail

I immediately felt the need to bud in on their conversation, and started asking questions of my own. It turns out, that the girl not only has no idea about Facebook, she also doesn’t own a mobile phone, and she doesn’t have an internet connection at home either. I must’ve had a stupid expression on my face, when on my question “How do you pay your bills?” she answered “At the Post Office”.

I must point out here, that the girl is NOT some sort of backwards person, unable to grasp the technology. She is a lovely girl, competent in her job, uses computer and internet at work, knows how to use them, so it’s a matter of personal choice not succumbing to the extra pressure of being on-line and available at all times.

I kept coming back to this conversation for the rest of the day, and I become curious as to how many other people are out there, that do not have internet?

Apparently, quite a lot. According to the Australia Bureau of Statistics, at the end of 2013 there was 12,397,000 internet subscribers, of which, amazingly, over 200,000 were still on Dial-Up connections.  It appears that we are not as technologically advanced as I’ve always thought. Australia is only ranked 25th in a world by internet penetration, having 82.3% of its population on-line.

Some users are still stuck with a snail pace of Dial-Up

Some users are still stuck with a snail pace of Dial-Up

The list of countries and their internet penetration makes for a very interesting read – there are some surprises there.

First, Falkland Islands are ranked Number 1, which must piss Iceland off big time, as that little bit of rock  in South Atlantic is pushing the little bit of rock in a North Atlantic into the Second spot. Our cousins from across the Tasman Sea are doing real good, managing to secure a spot in the top 10. But the biggest surprise for me was Nigeria – I was sure that with the millions of e-mails from millions of relatives of the dead people, all promising me the guaranteed way to get reach, Nigeria would be high up on the list. But no – it only comes at a lowly 128th spot. Those poor scammers must be working overtime, to be able to contact so many unsuspecting winners  🙂

 

 

 

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Super Fast, or Super Stupid?

Over the past few weeks, we were bombarded by a new Optus ad on TV – you know the one, two girlfriends talking on a phone and one of them complains “she is trying to send a photo, but her internet is too slow” and the other one responds “You have buffering issues, but I don’t, I have a 300 Gb plan with Optus”.

Without going into the details of the actual plan, I wonder how much the advertising agency understands what the commercial is about, who in Optus signed off on it, and how stupid do they think the average person is?

The thing is, both women in the ad can be on a “massive 300 Gb” plans, but one of them could be on ADSL1, or Satellite, or even a Dial-up, and the other one on ADSL 2+ or Optus via NBN. Comparing the speed of your internet connection with a download allowance is a typical case of comparing apples and oranges.

To finish it off, I would like to say that I am not a whinger, but…. if you are trying to sell a product, or a service, treat your customers with respect, don’t assume that you have to “dumb down” the advertising in order for it to be understood. Give us some credit.

Note:
The author of this post is a customer, shareholder and employee of Telstra.
The views expressed here are the author’s only and do not represent views of Telstra in any way, shape or form.