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It Truly Is a "World-Wide" Web
| - by Jim Edwards
(c) Jim Edwards - All Rights reserved
Let me tell you a quick story that started way back in
An Idaho farm boy stepped off an airplane in the Central
American country of Belize (then colonial British Honduras)
as one of the first Peace Corps volunteers. He carried
little more than the clothes on his back and his prized
possession - a tennis racquet.
There he met a Missouri school teacher, fell in love, got
married, and 5 years later yours truly appeared on the
Fast-forward a little over 4 decades and see just how much
the Internet has impacted the entire planet.
Last week my family took a cruise for our summer vacation.
Since the itinerary included Belize, my parents planned to
take the opportunity to renew friendships and show us their
On the surface it seemed simple enough, but as the week
progressed I realized just how much the Internet permeates
our lives, no matter which part of the world we call home.
Once a day for the entire week I checked my email onboard
ship. Despite the $.50 a minute cost to use their satellite
connection, it never ceased to amaze me that I could
instantly communicate with business associates via email
from the middle of the ocean.
But the most amazing thing happened when my father got an
email onboard ship from one of his old friends, who also
happens to be the first Prime Minister of Belize, Mr.
Before we left on our trip, my dad let Mr. Price's office
know he would visit the country briefly and wondered if we
could stop by for a few minutes just to say hello.
On Tuesday my father got an email through the ship's office
that Mr. Price wanted to meet us at his office on Friday.
Just think about that for a second...
One man in another country tracked down my father hundreds
of miles out to sea on a ship simply by knowing how to use
Upon arriving at Mr. Price's office we met not only with
Mr. Price, but also with the editor and senior reporter of
one of the nation's two major newspapers, The Belize Times
Apparently my parent's return after 40 years rated quite a
news story since the Peace Corps and similar organizations
played a vital role in helping the fledgling nation take
When I asked if we could get a copy of the article, the
reporter told me it would appear on the Internet next week!
It turns out they not only publish their newspaper in
print, but also publish most of each edition online so
friends of Belize all over the world can keep up with
These dedicated newspaper people manage to publish an
entire weekly newspaper and distribute content not only
nationally, but internationally via the Internet.
They literally use the power of the Internet to influence
the course of an entire nation.
Even more amazing, information technology allows them to do
it all without a huge staff or massive budget.
But to bring it back to a more personal level, upon
arriving back at the port to catch our ship, our tour guide
handed me her card and said, "Here's my card. When you or
your friends come back to Belize, email me and we'll make
all the arrangements for you."
Now that's the power and reach of the Internet to impact
people's lives on so many levels and draw us all closer
together as one global community - one person at a time.
About the author:
Jim Edwards is a syndicated newspaper columnist and the co-
author of an amazing new ebook that will teach you how to
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