“They’ll get sort of addicted, and then we’ll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade.”
Summary: Digital colonialism to be pervasive in some more Indian schools
EVERY ONCE in a while, especially when GNU/Linux gains traction in India, Bill Gates makes a special visit and Microsoft resorts to EDGI. Up to 72,000 schools are targeted by this brutal programme which subjugates not just adults but also children all across the world. EDGI enables more and more educational programmes to turn into training and schools to recruitment camps. To use an analogy, it’s the equivalent of taking over an engineering school and then teaching students there how to push buttons at a factory. It may be good for factory owners, but it prohibits or at least inhibits the creation of new factories. It’s deprivation, it’s abominable.
The government of Maharashtra has signed an MoU with Microsoft India, which will provide training in information technology to school teachers. Microsoft will also help build “employability-readiness skills” in junior college students.
We have internal documents from Microsoft to show what MoUs are all about. The move is also reminiscent of DreamSpark, which we wrote about earlier this year (many links to previous commentary). The MoU seems like a case of renewal, but it seems to affect the children more negatively than ever before, under the guise of “employability”. Teachers are also victims and for those who cannot get their heads around the size of the population, here are some sobering numbers:
Microsoft India has graph out three state-of-the-art IT academies in different places starting from Pune, Nagpur and then to Aurangabad and would trained about 92,000 teachers.
The number of teachers affected is roughly equal to the number of people employed by Microsoft. These teachers shall become a sort of ‘extended family’ to Microsoft, but Microsoft will not need to pay them a penny; who will? The government, i.e. the taxpayers. It’s the same old scam. The person from India who alerted us about it could not link to one specific article because there are so many. It’s big news in India, but very sad news to the population, which will probably be misled by the positive spin the in the mainstream press.
Look at this. They will receive a Microsoft certificate in their state schools. This is not a joke! You can’t make this stuff up.
Under the agreement, Microsoft will help deploy the Microsoft Digital Literacy Curriculum (DLC), a self learning multimedia based module which introduces the fundamentals of computing to a first-time user. The students will be assessed once the modules are completed, and awarded a Microsoft certificate, if successful.
Rajan Anandan, managing director, Microsoft India Pvt Ltd, said that the MoU includes expanding capacity of educators at school cluster level, training of 6,000 educators who would train others in their respective cluster, building and connecting communities through Live@Edu initiative and building IT readiness among the youth.
How much worse could it get?
“To them, it’s just a negligible market in which to make a buck but also a market to suppress and punish if it happens to elevate Microsoft’s competition.”This headline says it all: “Students to be trained by Microsoft.” Yes, because the young generation needs to be educated by a company that was found guilty of crimes in several continents — a company whose felonies continue to this date. What sort of message will that get across to the children? They are trained rather than educated by a company that proudly shows that — as the old saying goes — “crime pays”. Under this programme, they will be exploited (from Microsoft’s selfish point of view) and also be treated like slaves even before they get a chance to gain independence and become innovators for their own neighbours in India.
The following set of E-mails comes from Comes vs Microsoft. It is an essential reading for those who do not understand how managers at Microsoft view the developing world. To them, it’s just a negligible market in which to make a buck but also a market to suppress and punish if it happens to elevate Microsoft’s competition. Sadly enough, Nick Negroponte has known Bill Gates for many years and he too seems to have become an assistant in such an agenda. DRM-laden textbooks are not a distant vision, especially in any school where Microsoft software spreads and prevails. █
“To illustrate how someone could react to this mudslinging by Microsoft, I have written a hypothetical complaint titled ‘Microsoft is looting the nation in alliance with Indian IT giants’. While constructing this hypothetical complaint, I have used what I call the ‘Microsoft patented mud-slinging algorithm’. I have included it as a stand alone appendix (Annexure A) to this letter. The purpose is to demonstrate that such complaints and counter complaints would lead all of us to disaster. This hypothetical counter complaint shows Microsoft as working at national and International forums to maintain and enhance its monopoly in global markets, and as attempting to ensure its monopoly strangle-hold on Indian desktop Market. It also paints INFOSYS, TCS, WIPRO and NASSCOM as willfully helping Microsoft in this evil design, and thus acting grossly against Indian National interests.”