Should India build apps based on its own cultural and political ethos?
Stated Boycott China
As a growing number of Indians consume their news and content online, there are high chances that you are accessing this op-ed on a device with components manufactured in China. This long-standing dominance in computer hardware has now tipped over towards software deployment. Today, there are a growing number of online platforms with roots in China. This trend has not gone unnoticed. Local technology entrepreneurs have been visiting these technology companies in China to understand their growing ..
This insecurity has been growing in recent months as public opinion and commentary have focused on the growing dominance by China-centred companies. It has become an issue policy makers are engaged with. Critics point to the spread of disinformation as well as content and business models that appeal to the base instincts of users. There are also concerns around national cyber security due to the proximity of large Chinese tech companies to the Communist Party of China. Tangibly, this is demonstr ..
Another consideration is that such prescriptions for protectionism have adverse ecological impacts towards broader innovation, which benefit local firms and end users. This has been demonstrated by economic studies, but also the fundamental political beliefs of the public internet. The internet, as much as it becomes a walled garden controlled by large corporations, is still at its root a technology which permits cross-border data flows and collaboration agnostic of physical jurisdictions, enabl ..
Hence, the prescription of bans, creation of regulatory barriers or even consumer boycotts are crude implements which do not satisfy the root of the issue, which is lack of adequate local innovation. This need arises from user demand for services which are not being met, and while many may question whether such technologies may even be developed, alternative models and nuanced prescriptions are absent. To build towards the future, not only for India but for the world, there are some solutions.
Many of these answers can be found when product design and legal safeguards; match each other. They arise from a Long jurisprudence of fundamental rights and administrative law, which India shares with other democracies and common law jurisdictions. Hence, leaning into these values offers a level of protection and user control which is a user expectation, something people expect and demand as they gain greater knowledge about technology. Within India and beyond. Hence, the freedoms guaranteed.