There's no way we can talk about the advent of the internet in my country without peeking into my nation's history. The Internet is something I met in this world, it has being existing before my procreation, the era of the net is much computerized, bigger, ever improving and in Nigeria the introduction of the internet is rightly the same age as mine. History has being a place of ever learning, in it lies the knowledge that was, that is and will be. History is highly rich with the past and will continue to be rich with the present and future. In it richness lies how the Internet was introduced into my country.
The history of the Internet in Nigeria.
The key players responsible for the advent of the Internet were the finance of UNESCO, the then military government, the tertiary institution named the Obafemi Awolowo University (O.A.U) and the innovative minds produced by this university. These four key players pioneered the era of the Internet in Nigeria. In 1995 UNESCO offered to financially sponsor the experiment of some great minds who were studying in O.A.U and these innovative minds saw new possibilities that the internet used in other countries proffered. In preparedness, they ventured into a project to test this digital instrument called the "INTERNET" in the green and white territory, Nigeria. This eventually piqued the interest of the then military government which in turn made them a fan of the project and undoubtedly gave their thumbs of support. That was how this powerful instrument got adopted in Nigeria.
source: history of internet in Nigeria
Now to the bone of my entry
I believe the proper way to write on this topic is to first unveil it's history and how it came to be in this part of my world. Which I did above.
To remind my readers, this post is an entry to upmewhale's contest on the topic "Internet" but the focus is on the "restriction and freedom" of it's usage in my country.
The Internet to me is like a bright light, If covered will cause eternal darkness in the virtual world. Also it can be likened to a door, if shut for good will lead to denial of access to the great treasures of the virtual world. In my country the internet right from the late 20th century has be crucial to the virtual world. It has incited boundless opportunities for people who explore it richness. With statistics showing that the population of those using the net in Nigeria has increased to over 80 Million. Awesome.
People who are inclined in using smart devices in this part of my world mostly access the internet through the help of a telecom service provider to access all sort of informations, social media platforms, online trading and utilize banking services etc. In those days when technology was still in the infant stage, people were using the postal service offered by NITEL (Nigerian Telecommunications Limited) to do one or more things with communicating with people in personal and corporate level. But when telephones were introduced and everything went onto a smart level. People started sending electronic mails and messages via the internet to their loves ones and to their colleagues.
The truth is that in Nigeria there's sparsely any restrictions to how we utilize the Internet. People are free to access any social media platforms they desire. People are free to even visit sites with adult contents without any sanctions from the internet watchdogs. People are free to do remote jobs for people from their home without any restrictions or regulating policy. There's no tax attached to how the citizens use the net.
One good thing this freedom has done is the ability to connect to the crypto space without any penalty. There's no act or law enacted to my country's constitution right now that dogmatically limits crypto for now. For this, it keeps creating a dent to the slavery that exists in the flawed monetary system. Though the adoption of crypto is still spreading it's wings over all the geographical area but it is noteworthy to praise how the internet as served as an outstanding middleman between those clamouring for financial freedom and decentralization.
What of social media? The internet has being lethal to how people grasp first hand information and news, of how people interact with people across continents, of how people's voice are heard on a personal, national and international level, of how people access first hand propaganda and political news , of how people market their products and of how people educate one another.
In some countries cryptocurency is banned from their internet access, in some countries it is telegram, in some countries foreign social media platforms are banned like fb, twitter, instagram etc and while the native platforms are the sites demanded to be used. One funny thing that stands in between is the heavy monitoring and sanctions that await defaulters.
Maybe the big guys at the top are scared of what the internet can do but anyways from this side of my world it's only cyber crimes that receives stringent punishment apart from this everything relating to the net is bound to freedom and lacks an iota of those popular limitations common in countries censoring the usage of the net.
Thanks for reading.
Link to contest: upmewhale's blog
Click images for source