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Starving, Dying Poor to Get
Much-Needed Net Access

Okinawa, Japan ( — The world's poorest nations reacted with elation yesterday after learning the G-8 economic powers have pledged to bring them into the digital economy by wiring their countries. "With access to stock quotes, entertainment news, and streaming video pornography, I will finally be able to feed my family," said Jamil Jurawa, who lives near a contaminated well in a small east Gambian village. "This is a great day and I hope not to die of dysentery before it ends."

In late July, the Group of 8 authorized a Digital Opportunity Taskforce, or "Dot Force,'' to investigate how to wire the Third World and help bridge the rich-poor technology gap. Relief agencies denounced the plan as absurd, insisting that food and medicine are needed first. But the Dot Force argued that information is also critical, and to prove its point, it provided computers and Internet access to Jamil Jurawa and his brother Tamar, who lives in a neighboring Gambian village. The two exchanged instant messages that, said Dot Force members, exemplify the knowledge-sharing power of the Internet:

"Tamar, I have no food. Do you have food?"

"Jamil, I also have no food. But tonight Britney is to chat at E-Online!"

"Good one! I am ROFLDM (Rolling On The Floor Laughing and Dying of Malnutrition)."

"OK! CTFN! (Contracting Typhoid Fever Now)."


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