Blog post [Society Where People Are Buying Good Smartphone Before Good Food]

Think when your family has more than 4 members . Your child doesn’t go to school because you cannot pay fees. You have to work as a labor for 10 to 12 hours a day and you earn 5 dollars. You are the only working member of your family. Due to all these circumstances people from every part of my country are going to middle east in masses just to earn 250 dollars to 350 dollars a month.
Now here comes the technology.
When one labor asks his family what to buy for them, the only answer is Smartphone with a very good camera. And yes he sends one or more cell phones costing his 2 months salary before sending one dollar to the family. And yes family is happy with phone and without food.
Another common story goes like this:
The local porn sites are full of the videos that are made in home in those families mentioned above who even don’t how to change the password of their social media account. Some of the naked photos are shared in social media messages within married couples and leaked by someone from community who knows the passwords. Or Their private videos are leaked from those mobile phone repair shop who can use simple recovery software to recover all information stored before.
And the sequel of the story continues as
It is the community where a lady must not show her full face or body parts except hands and legs to the male members of the family or community as per their culture. When her naked videos or photos are seen by everybody around, there is no chance for her to go to the police station because she cannot utter a word on that topic to any body in this world. Here she thinks only of suicide or gets depressed where she is hated for all of her life.
There are different more stories. People take revenge through social media and still cannot reach police due to the moral damage.
This is real damage in economically backward countries are facing due to smartphones and social medias.
This is why i am working with my team to empower youths, save their life through awareness, motivate them to use cell phones and internet in beneficial ways.


Hi Biswa,

This is a very good topic for a blog post. We have so many perspectives from western countries related to their use of technology. It is great to describe the impact of all this modern tech in economically underdeveloped countries, such as Nepal.

Your description is already laid out well

  • Background of your country. Average earnings are low, and often children cannot attend school due to high costs. Monthly incomes are between 250-350 dollars

  • Despite this very expensive smartphones are top of the wishlist for most people. I am curious why that is the case? Is it a status symbol, or are phones used for payment, trading, education and other useful purposes? If buying tech, why not buy e.g. a laptop that is better suited for children to follow online courseware etc.

  • Then you go into the problems that now arise. You list a number of them and you can dedicate a couple of titled paragraphs to give examples of these: leaking of private data to e.g. porn sites, fake news in whatsapp groups, etc. where the societal culture greatly increases the harms and damage that results.

At the heart of all this is the almost complete lack of digital literacy and ‘digital hygiene’ and the - I would guess - enormous challenge to teach this to people who did not have and cannot afford even a basic education.

I think there is a great potential to give a real positive twist to this post and follow-up blog posts. Make them rallying cries for anyone able to jump in help alleviate these problems, by showing real solution directions.

Hi @biswa I’ve seen your organization account on facebook. I saw some of the videos the audience I think are more of the middle class. What social classes your advocacy, awareness, education and programs are geared for? Do you focus also on those marginal group of your society? In some Asian countries having a smart phone is a sort of status symbol but I find your story of buying a phone instead of buying good food is to extreme. That might change if part of your advocacy is to change attitude. Prioritization of needs. Do you have laws in your country that imposed penalty on taking without consent sex videos or leaking to the community sex videos or penalizing offender posting on social media or the internet sex videos which is intended for private consumption. Laws are very effective to prevent this kind of act and preserve reputation especially women. Or better still people are inform not to take sex videos at all considering the risk involve. Asian women are very sensitive of their feminity that is part of our culture. It is impressive and admirable what your organization is working for to empower the youth of Nepal to be a better digital citizen. More power and keep up the good work. Best Wishes.

@aschrijver yes its like a fashion for people specially youths. and in my point of view 95 percent of the time remote kids spend on social media and messaging application. this is why in every programs i ask to the students : “if you spend 40000 rupees (i.e.400$) for a smart phone how much earning has that phone given to you ?if not then you have spent your that sum of money just to change profile pictures”
the purpose of smart phone is not to learn something. its just it is for social media and a competitive camera. that is why people have no laptop in villages but very good smart phone.
as they use phone for social media from the sim card data. laptop don’t support sim card so they don’t use laptops. in one case one boy asked my phone to his take a selfie to post in his facebook as i am an unknown person to him i still have that photo.
and about rules and laws:
people don’t want to reach police because they don’t want to say a word about sexual thing . this thing is causing depression, suicide and all possible disasters :frowning:
this is why i tell people not to take any nude selfie or not to take any videos not for private use as well. why to take risk? and yes after my program people are convinced. they even share the problems if someone is doing something wrong with them in social media . and we solve these cases.
there are lots more problem . people will be dying and depression patient count will increase exponentially if no measure of awareness will be considered.

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@richard1 hello richard yes i have posted only one video with English subtitle and another video is with law makers in their program . i was in that program to talk about how technology could help implementing laws.
the audience in the video are not from the middle class. only some of them have houses. other have hut to live in. but they carry smart phone. any how they will manage to get the phone.
the school where i have done the program are mostly government and some are private schools.
private school students are middle class . and normally not in all case students at government schools are in poor economic condition.
but the thing is either rich or poor both don’t know how to use smart phones in secured ways.
i have some stories.
i give one considered case: suppose a nude private video is leaked by a boy . if the girl in the video knows she will beg to the boy just to delete the video but cannot reach the police because she feels shameful that she shot the video with her husband or boy friend. so she cannot share the story because of her moral belief.
i had one case to handle that one boy from good family background came to me asking to delete his naked video posted in local porn site . he said he just captured that for normal entertainment purpose and he is unaware who posted it . he was almost in depression state.
there is rules but people have different moral perspective. so best thing is awareness. that is what we do. that is what needed to be done rapidly to control technological disaster.


@biswa, you might recall that I suggested getting in touch with Anish Ansari. I had written to him about you, and he was open to being contacted by you.

If you do speak to him, I would suggest the following subject: trying to make the leap from using the phone as a personal/private object to using it as a tool for education and business.

From the situations you describe, it sounds like the phone is being used to exploit people when it should be used to help and empower them.


@biswa Considering the culture, norms, practices etc. of Nepal I think it is best for your country if it doesn’ t have one or not effective enough must have comprehensive laws against proliferation of digital private sex materials. Laws that really have teeth. This serves as a deterrent. And your organization could help in lobbying the lawmakers of your country. The psychological effect to the persons involved are tremendous not only causing depression but others committed suicide because of the shame. Yes awareness is very important to prevent this kind of situation. Best thing to do is not to do foolish things in the first place that later on you regretted. Hope I shared some useful information. All the best to you and your organization.


@biswa All the best to you and your org. :slight_smile:


@micheleminno Thank you so much :slight_smile: . These things push me to work .
@patm you are awesome. you helped me so much . god bless you.
@gkrishnaks Thank you. :slight_smile: