Social media has presented us with a unique set of problems. However, the Ugandan government has offered a unique solution: Charging people. Could work.
There’s a long-running aphorism that is mentioned everytime the internet presents something truly moronic: I can’t believe this website is free.
Well, the Ugandan government has decided to monetise our nonsense, as they’re now charging their citizens for the privilege. Common Ugandans will now have to pay 200 Ugandan shillings ($0.05) a day to use platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and WhatsApp.
As a response, a tech company has made with the lawyers, citing a black eye on the face of net neutrality.
Join me to thank these patriotic Ugandans who have filed a #SocalMediaTax petition today at the constitution court. @SilverKayondo @qataharraymond @BillOpio @Cyber__Line @iambaguma and Okiror Emmanuel. You have given us a strong foundation for the future of our digital industry. pic.twitter.com/jyEgV57lgV
— The President 🇰🇪🇺🇬 (@Ugaman01) 2 July 2018
The critics claim that the tax was “passed with no public participation and hinders freedom of speech and innovation,” in the petition.
The President of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni reportedly introduced the bill because he says social media encourages gossip. Well, yeah. It also promotes criticism, flaming, outing, negging and echo chambering. But it’s what we all signed up for.
And we did so for free.