Indonesia. An indigenous community considers the internet harmful and asks to cut its connection

A backwards or pioneering attitude to the dangers of the web? The indigenous Baduy community, which numbers 26,000 souls in the province of Banten, on the island of Java, is divided into two: a peripheral group which partly embraces new technologies and a central group which flees the traps of contemporary life. .

The central group asked the authorities to cut off the reception of the internet network and to divert the telecommunications antennas located nearby so that the signal does not reach them.

Concerns about the mental health of young people

For them, the telecommunications antennas built near their area could threaten their way of life and the mental health of young people who might be tempted to use the internet. Officials in Lebak district, Banten province, received the letter on Monday and will agree to speak with Indonesia’s information ministry to try to fulfill the request. “Above all, we want to adapt to what the Baduy want, and we must preserve their traditions and local know-how,” Budi Santoso, a Lebak official, said on Friday.

The peripheral population of the Baduy community, which runs online businesses, needed the internet, but according to Budi Santoso, the authorities fear that visitors or tourists will access the network and spread content they consider inappropriate for the Baduy population.

Nicknamed the Amish of Asia

The question of freedom of access to the Internet in Indonesia, a conservative country with a Muslim majority, is controversial. The government has banned gambling and pornography, and requires internet service providers to filter out content they deem inappropriate. Despite censorship, illegal websites that host this type of content are very numerous.

The reclusive Baduy, dubbed the Amish of Asia by Western media, have chosen to live in the forest and reject technology, money and traditional teaching. They reside in three villages located in an area of ​​4,000 hectares, several hours drive from the capital Jakarta.

Source: Le Progrès : info et actu nationale et régionale – Rhône, Loire, Ain, Haute-Loire et Jura | Le Progrès by

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