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Remote tribe reveal the negative effects of the internet after being introduced for the first time

Remote tribe reveal the negative effects of the internet after being introduced for the first time

Some Marubo people have weighed up the pros and cons since Elon Musk's Starlink introduced internet to their village

A remote Amazon tribe has revealed how life's changed since they gained access to the internet.

The Marubo people live in a remote Indigenous village around the Ituí River in the Amazon rainforest.

Until September 2023, they had phones, but no internet access, remaining pretty unfazed by technology - that is, until Elon Musk came along.

The remote village received some antennas from Musk's Starlink company - a satellite internet constellation operated by Starlink Services, LLC, which is a subsidiary of SpaceX - of which Musk is a co-founder and CEO.

Basically, Starlink is 'high speed internet' which states it's 'available almost anywhere on Earth' - and indeed, despite the Marubo living in one of the most remote parts of the Amazon rainforest, in September last year it reached them.

And they've since revealed how life has changed since they were introduced to the internet.

An investigation by the New York Times looked into how the tribe's way of life has changed since September last year.

The Marubo people live in a remote part of the Amazon rainforest (Getty Images/ Michael Dantas/ AFP)
The Marubo people live in a remote part of the Amazon rainforest (Getty Images/ Michael Dantas/ AFP)

Jack Nicas reveals that many of the Marubo people are now living a 'very new way of life' since gaining access to the internet and the scenes in the village are ones which are 'far more familiar' to the likes of those who live in cities in the UK or US.

In a video shared to his Instagram, the journalist explains that 'many' tribe members 'already had smartphones' prior to Starlink being introduced in their area, but they typically just used them to communicate with one another and take photos.

And when Starlink was introduced, the change was instant - the internet was a 'huge hit' and people were 'on it all the time' which caused 'problems,' with some of the Marubo people speaking out.

Tsainama Marubo told The New York Times when the internet arrived 'everyone was happy' but 'now, things have gotten worse'.

Starlink came to the village in September 2023 (John Keeble/Getty Images)
Starlink came to the village in September 2023 (John Keeble/Getty Images)

"Young people have gotten lazy because of the internet," she said. "They're learning the ways of white people."

Indeed, Nicas reports seeing people 'hunched over their phones, typing away, sending voice notes, watching video clips'.

"I saw two very young boys just swiping through video after video of Neymar Junior," he adds.

And this interfered with the hunting and farming 'necessary' for the tribe's 'way of life.

And so there's had to be a few rules instilled.

Nicas reports the internet is now 'only on for several hours in the morning and several hours in the evening and then all day Sunday'.

While the internet has brought 'many benefits' such as calling for help in a medical emergency, communicating with other villages and learning about the rest of the world, it's also - unsurprisingly - come with many a pitfall.

The introduction of the internet has had many pros but also many cons (Flora Dutra/NAVI global)
The introduction of the internet has had many pros but also many cons (Flora Dutra/NAVI global)

Nicas saw Marubo people being fed 'misinformation,' alongside falling for 'scams' watching 'porn' and consuming 'addictive social networks' and 'violent video games' - all of which most of the world had decades to get used to, process and debate how to use.

Leaders of tribe also said more and more young people in the group on internet has led to more interest in outside world and leaving the forest which is 'worrisome' because of the prospect of the 'death of the culture and the customs of the Marubo people in these remote villages'.

However, for now, Tsainama implores no one to take the internet access away, with leader Enoque Marubo adding: "It's already saved lives."

UNILAD has contacted Starlink for comment.

Featured Image Credit: @jnicas/Instagram

Topics: Elon Musk, Phones, Technology, World News