zeborah: Zebra with stripes shaking (earthquake)
(All of us who have decent internet access and read English have a good amount of privilege thereby anyway, so US-centrism on the internet is, in the greater scheme of things, nothing more than a minor background irritation. But, you know, sometimes it's worth noting minor background irritations, if only for the record.)

On the internet, USans have the advantage that generally:

  • E-commerce sites will list prices in their currency;
  • and accept their credit cards;
  • and ship to their address. [There may be some exceptions for Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico, etc; but not as many exceptions as there are for other countries.]
  • They don't have to pay currency conversion charges.
  • Shipping charges are cheaper and sometimes free.
  • Charity donations are tax deductible in their country.
Content and services
  • The streaming sites they want to visit won't withhold services based on their country;
  • nor will new web technologies such as Google Voice or Foursquare;
  • nor will ebook providers such as the Kindle;
  • nor will competitions exclude them from entry. [See the note on exceptions above.]
  • Libraries in their country are allowed to negotiate access to the fulltext on Google Books.
  • If a helpline exists, it won't be an international call and it will be open when they're awake.
  • Search results will be relevant to their country.
  • Services in general will be designed for maximum convenience for people from their country: map sites will default to showing their country, drop-down menus will default to having their country at the top, etc.
  • Online chats and conferences they're interested in, for either business or pleasure, will be arranged to coincide with feasible hours for them (as opposed to 4am).
  • They'll receive updates from lists, feeds, memes etc on the date that they're meant to receive them, instead of most of a day later. (Ie Caturday won't occur on Sunday and FlyLady's Monday assignment won't arrive in the wee hours of Tuesday morning.)
  • Similarly, they don't have to choose between participating in memes at the same time as everyone else vs on the same date as everyone else.
  • They can agree to Terms and Conditions adjudicated in their own country.
  • They can conduct regular life on the internet without having to surrender their personal data to be governed by the laws of another country.
  • They don't have to choose between watching a TV show or movie now in order to talk about it with other fans and thus becoming a criminal, vs waiting for weeks, months or years to watch it legally but have no-one left to talk to about it.
  • When they join a community, there'll be other people there from their own country.
  • Conversations will be about topics that are relevant to their country, and they can assume that people from other countries will know what they're talking about.
  • If the conversation is about a topic that is not relevant to their country, they have the option, should they choose, to change the topic by force of numbers;
  • or, alternatively, they can ask to be educated about the topic without fear that anyone will think their ignorance of it is unusual;
  • assuming, of course, that the topic hasn't already been explained for their convenience by someone foreseeing the inevitable.
  • They can expect to be understood when writing in the standard dialect of their country.
  • They can expect others to write to them in the standard dialect of their own country.
  • They can expect spellcheck systems not to complain about the standard dialect of their country.

Just so you know, I reserve the right to mercilessly mock comments about how:
  • there are worse things in the world to worry about (seeing as how this was the first thing I said);
  • population numbers may be relevant (seeing as how this is neither unobvious nor very much comfort); or
  • this one time, or this one site, or this one community, you as a USan were briefly disadvantaged (seeing as how the fact that this sort of experience is exceptional for USans is kind of my point).
I have an icon ready and everything, so you can't say you weren't warned.


zeborah: Map of New Zealand with a zebra salient (Default)

September 2017

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