3 ways the Internet has become priceless during Covid-19
A respite from the lockdown and quarantine
In the mid-1990’s when the Internet first made itself known, it vowed the masses. A gateway to have any sort of information on your fingertips, provided that you patiently wait for the page to load.
It started out exclusively in so called “Internet Cafes”, where the public could go and pay to “surf” the vast ocean called the Internet for a limited. And then come back home and talk with the family about its seemingly unlimited power.
Soon, though we were not satisfied with the visits to the Internet cafes. The limited time and not being able to surf the Internet at once own pleasure, made us think, “What if we had the Internet at home?”.
Fast forward twenty-five years, and we are living in the age of the Internet of Things (IoT). Now, our very lives depend on the Internet.
Our mobiles, laptops, TVs, cars, are all connected to the Internet. We are so “Logged on” to our digital life, that we sometimes need to do a “Digital detox”.
Like any creation under the Sun, the Internet has it’s good and bad. But there should be no doubt that without the Internet today, we would be losing our battle against the Covid-19 pandemic. Here is why.
1. Keeping businesses afloat
One of the biggest impacts of Covid-19 has been businesses. The lockdowns implemented on many countries led to closure of many shops, restaurants and offices. The businesses no longer could receive customers in person. So, they all turned to the Internet.
Without having websites for the customers to order from, many businesses would have gone under. Online shopping was on the rise before the pandemic. But with it, many people, who exclusively shopped in physical stores, got introduced to the scenario of buying things off the Internet.
As for the offices, the employees would not be able to do home office if it weren’t for the Internet. Cloud computing would not have existed without the Internet.
Zoom or Google Duo or Skype, or any of the conference calling applications would not have existed without the Internet. Enough said.
2. A respite from the lockdown and quarantine
Lockdown not only effected businesses, but also the people. It limited our physical activities to the bare and essential minimum. But it also effected our minds.
We humans are social animals, and while you may think that this lockdown has affected mostly extroverts, think again. Introverts may not be the ones to plan a spontaneous trip, and may be comfortable being alone. But that latter characteristic is the main cause for depression.
One respite against that loneliness for introverts was going to work or meeting family. Lockdowns took that away from them.
The Internet though is the saving grace. Think how hard it would have been if video calls did not exist? One press and you can see your loved one from anywhere in the world. You can stay up to date about the things happening to your family and friends. Their faces remind you that you are not alone in this fight.
This is especially true on people who are under quarantine. Two weeks without human contact can be devastating to our minds. But thanks to the Internet we have a fighting chance against depression.
3. A way to share Covid-19 research
The Covid-19 pandemic is compared mostly to the Spanish Flu in 1918. Many do fear that this pandemic could be as deadly as the one in the 20th century. That may not be the case, and that is due to the Internet.
Today, we can read an article published by John Hopkins University online instantly. The priceless research about the importance of disinfecting our hands and wearing masks shared by hundreds of researchers around the world only re-enforced our belief of following these steps.
But the most important attribute of the power of Internet is the hunt for a vaccine. Labs and companies can now share finding with each other within hours, saving millions of taxpayer money and time.
All this has been vital in stopping the spread and will ultimately help us find a vaccine.
Had the Internet existed in 1918, maybe the Spanish Flu might not have taken more than 50 million lives. If the news that a deadly disease is spreading had reached around the world, millions of lives could have been saved. We may never know for sure. As always, time will tell.
We still have a responsibility to use this powerful tool properly. As easy as it is to share correct and useful information, it is similarly easy to spread misinformation. Fake news has been an unfortunate trend that has been in the rise the last few years. While it may just cause an inconvenience most of the time, a fake news about Covid-19 can have dire consequences.
So next time you see an information and want to share it with your family and friends remember this immortal quote written by Stan Lee,
With great power comes great responsibility.
Hi, I'm Linto. I write about technology, sports, and everyday stories. Check out my Medium page https://medium.com/@lintolingson for other stories and my Sportskeeda page https://www.sportskeeda.com/profile/lintolingson-1 for my take on football.