A Country With far Less

A luxury that social media has given us is the ability to voice our thoughts and opinions freely at almost any time. For many of us, social media platforms are a part of our life that we rely on without even understanding their value in our every day routine. In one corner of our world far from most of us, there is a group of people that do not share the same luxury we do. They have not been afforded with the daily tools we use to express ourselves as we please.

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“A poll conducted in March 2015, the first independent opinion poll in Cuba since 1959, found that three out of four Cubans felt they could not freely express their opinions in public.” It is hard to even comprehend how different life must be for those living in Cuba. Even after the end of dictatorship in Cuba, a survey revealed that only 16% of people had access to the Internet. A startling 4% of people in the country had a twitter.

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The reign of Fidel Castro has had long-term effects on the communities of Cuba, but many are hopeful that social media platforms can aid the people of such a beautiful country. The dictator’s censorship and constraints put people in a vulnerable position. It is well known that Cuba is behind the curve on much of their infrastructure and products, but with the rise of social media over the years, the biggest gap between Cuba and the rest of the world might be the usage of social media and digital business.

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The future of Cuba marks the end of an awful dictatorship, and much of the country has already improved technologically. In the capital, Havana, there are now more than 40 government approved Wi-Fi hotspots. Many families are starting to enjoy Internet access and higher connection speeds. Access to social media sites is still difficult, but as more resources flood into Cuba, the technology of various social media platforms should take of.

I am excited for Cuba as a country, and I cannot wait to witness the birth of their online community and all the good it will bring to the country.

 

Sources:

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/projects/cp/international/obama-in-cuba/obama-spends-almost2-hours-with-cuban-dissidents

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-35865283

 

 

5 comments

  1. We often time take our freedoms for granted here in the US and it is overwhelmingly difficult for us to get out of our skin and try to begin understanding what it must be like under other governments. The taste of freedom, luckily, is often enough to anger the people to create an uprising. Cuba specifically is an interesting example as the threat of imprisonment or even death were consequences of mutinous actions. With seemingly more freedoms being given to Cubans, it will be fascinating to see what they do with them. I have hope they will begin to speak freely, communicate more effectively, and begin innovating on a large scale.

  2. My friend is in Cuba right now, and barely has any access to wifi or any kind of Internet. She did tell me about the great poverty that exists there, houses that look really worn down, kids walking bare foot in the streets, and an excursion she did with some people she met there where their touring guide climbed up a tall tree to throw down some fruit for them. Their transportation too is so behind (including their cars, see link bellow), making them walk over to buy a ticket at the station a day before their departure, something we would never even think of in our days – only buy the ticket once we get there, or actually – buy the ticket through an app!
    Cuba is still very much behind on so many other things too, I wonder how many years it will take them to become less of a developing country. I am also very excited for Cuba, and really hope to see them advance not only from a social media/online perspective but also in many others fields as well!

    Pictures I received from my friend in Cuba:

    https://scontent.fzty2-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/16507833_1283873358327310_2500225213194989417_n.jpg?oh=9ea7b6e78dbeb14a41693f39d90419cd&oe=5904159C

    https://scontent.fzty2-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/14724444_10210826206550895_7110711495510488361_n.jpg?oh=27a3df8a6e8b8d36801dfb9485994a58&oe=59034223

    1. lenskubal · ·

      Danna, thank you for your insights. Those pictures are amazing. It is unbelievable how different their country is compared to the rest of the world.

  3. Interesting angle. I think you could have gone a bit further in thinking about how SM would change Cuba were it introduced or what it would take to get there.

  4. I found this post interesting as I am fascinated by the use of social media as it relates to government/politics. I am familiar with the role that Twitter played in the Arab Spring and how instrumental the platform was for the temporarily-ousted President, Tayyip Erdoğan in regaining control. I am less familiar with Cuba’s approach to social media.

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