34 votes

Tild-ers who live in developing countries (India,Brazil,Nigeria), what differences between your country and the West would you like to bring to others attention?

First, I'll start with currency (although this isn't unique, exclusive or universal to developing countries.) In my country a real is 25 US cents and 22 European cents. This effectively means everything made by a US or European company (a lot of things and almost everything technological or of value) is 4 times more expensive for me than for an American/European. This means an iPhone costs 4 thousand BRL but our minimum wage is still around 1000 BRL monthly (4.30 BRL/hour assuming an 8-hour shift) meaning an iPhone costs 4 months of minimum wage in Brazil while in the US it costs less than one. For reference an Indian rupee is a 70th of a dollar and the minimum wage is 164 to 750 rupees daily depending on the state (4920 to 22k rupees monthly) but it still only amounts to 320 US dollars.

20 comments

  1. [10]
    mrbig
    Link
    Well, first a friendly correction: Brazil is in the West ;) More on the currency issue. What North-Americans consider a normal expense is frequently a luxury in Brazil. A PS4 or Xbox game can cost...

    Well, first a friendly correction: Brazil is in the West ;)

    More on the currency issue. What North-Americans consider a normal expense is frequently a luxury in Brazil. A PS4 or Xbox game can cost a quarter of the minimum wage. Steam is cheaper but still expensive for most. An iOS or Android app that is considered cheap in America can be prohibitively costly for us. Some people in other countries are very proud of not supporting software and media piracy, but I wonder if they would have the same attitude if a subscription to Adobe or Microsoft made their jobs literally unprofitable.

    Every IT guy in the country walks around with a bag full of CD-ROMs and thumb-drives with cracked versions of Windows, and if he doesn't he won't have any customers. The only situation where we don't pirate Windows is when the machine comes with it pre-installed.

    Nowadays I only use free software, but that's not feasible for everyone.

    19 votes
    1. [3]
      Kuromantis
      Link Parent
      Yeah, and that's presuming you have a working computer. (Mine is a 12-year old windows 7 with half a gig of RAM that takes some 30 seconds to render the chrome main page and it's still where my...

      Yeah, and that's presuming you have a working computer. (Mine is a 12-year old windows 7 with half a gig of RAM that takes some 30 seconds to render the chrome main page and it's still where my family stores all my childhood memories because we just can't afford a new computer and our only backup is a PS3.)

      11 votes
      1. [2]
        DyslexicStoner240
        Link Parent
        Dude, I was in the same situation as you; my laptop is a 2010 Asus and was running Windows 7. It was plagued with all kinds of issues and slow as hell. Some time ago I bit the bullet and purchased...

        Dude, I was in the same situation as you; my laptop is a 2010 Asus and was running Windows 7. It was plagued with all kinds of issues and slow as hell.

        Some time ago I bit the bullet and purchased a Windows 10 key from a shady looking website. At the time it went for 7€, now it's 5€ for the Professional version.

        It was honestly one of the best purchases of the year for me - everything is so much faster and customisable.

        Pirating it is also very much doable, but I couldn't be bothered; if you don't want to pay there is a guide on the sideboard of r/piracy iirc

        1 vote
        1. JoylessAubergine
          Link Parent
          You can buy keys off ebay if you dont want to give your details to dodgy sites.

          You can buy keys off ebay if you dont want to give your details to dodgy sites.

          2 votes
    2. [2]
      emdash
      Link Parent
      I do commiserate with this situation. Do you have any plans, or have you considered moving abroad? (Yes, it's a lot easier to say than it is to do).

      I do commiserate with this situation. Do you have any plans, or have you considered moving abroad? (Yes, it's a lot easier to say than it is to do).

      6 votes
      1. mrbig
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        I'm very fond of anglophone culture, but mental health issues make me wary of leaving behind my support network.

        I'm very fond of anglophone culture, but mental health issues make me wary of leaving behind my support network.

        5 votes
    3. [4]
      Archimedes
      Link Parent
      Do you think discounted regional pricing would work? I'd think Microsoft, for example, would rather sell legitimate licenses for cheaper than have everything pirated or not affordable.

      Do you think discounted regional pricing would work? I'd think Microsoft, for example, would rather sell legitimate licenses for cheaper than have everything pirated or not affordable.

      2 votes
      1. stu2b50
        Link Parent
        It would earn MSFT more money, certainly. But the issue then becomes how to properly region lock your product. If you sell it for cheap in Brazil, what's to stop gray and black market windows keys...

        It would earn MSFT more money, certainly. But the issue then becomes how to properly region lock your product. If you sell it for cheap in Brazil, what's to stop gray and black market windows keys from floating back into the US?

        8 votes
      2. [2]
        mrbig
        Link Parent
        I think so. Some people say that it would be a disaster because of VPN, but I figure that the people that would use this method to acquire cheaper software are the same that are pirating right...

        I think so. Some people say that it would be a disaster because of VPN, but I figure that the people that would use this method to acquire cheaper software are the same that are pirating right now.

        And online services like Netflix managed to be profitable in spite of VPNs.

        1 vote
        1. arp242
          Link Parent
          For a lot of these services you need a local bank account for it to work. Hell, I even had to jump through hoops to get a charger shipped from Lenovo to New Zealand last year because I didn't have...

          For a lot of these services you need a local bank account for it to work. Hell, I even had to jump through hoops to get a charger shipped from Lenovo to New Zealand last year because I didn't have a local bank account when I lived there 🤷‍♂️

          I currently live in Indonesia and my Spotify subscription expired and now I can't get a new one because I live in Indonesia but don't have a local bank account :-/ With international accounts like Revolut and TransferWise you no longer actually need to bother to get a local account, except for all these online services that bug you about it.

          I refuse to pay more. I'm local to Indonesia and live off a local budget. Steam just marks me as a "fraudulent" if I try to pay with my UK account in Indonesia, because clearly everyone who doesn't fit in your neat little boxes is a fraudster. I'm actually kind of pissed about it, not because I take it personally but because the world is increasingly moving in a direction where you can't be "outside of the box" just because stupid computer systems can deal with it, and apathetic support people can't be arsed to deal with it (although they usually don't have the power anyway).

          Netflix didn't give me any trouble, btw, they charge me 109k Rupiah a month, which is the local price (about half of European one).

          6 votes
  2. [4]
    ThatFanficGuy
    (edited )
    Link
    To provide you with some level of perspective: About 60 Russian rubles make a dollar. The federal minimum wage is about 12k RUB/mo., or about $200/mo.. Rent for a single-room apartment in smaller...

    To provide you with some level of perspective:

    About 60 Russian rubles make a dollar. The federal minimum wage is about 12k RUB/mo., or about $200/mo.. Rent for a single-room apartment in smaller cities, like my own, is the same as the minimum wage.

    It used to be 30 rubles to a dollar before 2012 2014.

    11 votes
    1. [3]
      Odysseus
      Link Parent
      What happened in 2012?

      What happened in 2012?

      2 votes
      1. [2]
        cfabbro
        Link Parent
        Not much. But 2014, on the other hand... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_ruble#Exchange_rates https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_sanctions_during_the_Ukrainian_crisis

        Not much. But 2014, on the other hand...

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_ruble#Exchange_rates
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_sanctions_during_the_Ukrainian_crisis

        The sanctions contributed to the collapse of the Russian ruble and the Russian financial crisis.

        5 votes
        1. Odysseus
          Link Parent
          Yes, I remember 2014 being a mess after the annexation of Crimea, but I was wondering if there was something I missed in 2012

          Yes, I remember 2014 being a mess after the annexation of Crimea, but I was wondering if there was something I missed in 2012

          3 votes
  3. [2]
    arp242
    Link
    So as a Dutch person living in Indonesia for the last few months, a few things from the top of my head (which is partly probably "Indonesia things" rather than "developing nations things"):...

    So as a Dutch person living in Indonesia for the last few months, a few things from the top of my head (which is partly probably "Indonesia things" rather than "developing nations things"):

    • There's a lot less foresight here; for example when I asked some locals about recycling they were just "lol yeah nah". Environmental protection in general is terrible; it's very common to see people just burning trash by the side of the road. There is no public transport to speak of, and there's not even any real infrastructure to walk anywhere: it's all cars and scooters, often gridlocked because the roads are too narrow for the traffic.

      Basically, they're repeating all the mistakes we made in the west, except worse because the scale/population is so much bigger now.

    • A lot more focus on religion. When I told a date that I didn't have any religion she just looked at me weirdly and asked which God I believe in. I replied I didn't and she just couldn't stop laughing because it was so far outside of her world. In general I find that even very non-religious people are somewhat religious. It's rare to see people who really think religion is silly (whereas it's much more common in the West).

    • Corruption. It's just not really a thing back home. I'm sure it exists sometimes, but not on these "I should hide money if I have more than what I'm willing to lose" and "I should avoid that cop because he might shake me down for some cash"-kind of level.

    • The bureaucracy is terrible and horribly inefficient.

    • They treat animals terribly here. It's not uncommon to see animals locked in very small cages where they can hardly turn. I've seen children punch dogs. My girlfriend works as a vet, and a lot of their customers are foreigners because on the whole, many locals just don't care.

    • A lot of people have useless jobs and work just for the sake of having a job. It's not uncommon to be in a store or pub and have the employees outnumber the customers by quite a few. They got fuck all to do, but ... they got a job.

      People are also way too helpful for my tastes by the way. It's all about "providing service", but a lot of the time it's just not needed or even awkward. My favourite is the waiter at restaurants just waiting at the table while you go through the menu. In their view, it's "good service", but I feel rushed as I don't want to waste the other person's time. I guess "time" is viewed as much more expandable.

    7 votes
    1. Kuromantis
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      Yeah here in Brazil this also applies. In a street right next to my school (and a center of medical help) there used to be lots of trash. They tried to clean it up to only moderate success and the...

      There's a lot less foresight here; for example when I asked some locals about recycling they were just "lol yeah nah". Environmental protection in general is terrible; it's very common to see people just burning trash by the side of the road. There is no public transport to speak of, and there's not even any real infrastructure to walk anywhere: it's all cars and scooters, often gridlocked because the roads are too narrow for the traffic.

      Yeah here in Brazil this also applies. In a street right next to my school (and a center of medical help) there used to be lots of trash. They tried to clean it up to only moderate success and the trash just went elsewhere. It's not that hard to see broken (or not) glass bottles and tables in the way back.

      A lot more focus on religion. When I told a date that I didn't have any religion she just looked at me weirdly and asked which God I believe in. I replied I didn't and she just couldn't stop laughing because it was so far outside of her world. In general I find that even very non-religious people are somewhat religious. It's rare to see people who really think religion is silly (whereas it's much more common in the West).

      Yeah that's pretty true. I'd presume it's because education is just garbage and evangelical churches (or in your case muslim mosques) make money.

      Corruption. It's just not really a thing back home. I'm sure it exists sometimes, but not on these "I should hide money if I have more than what I'm willing to lose" and "I should avoid that cop because he might shake me down for some cash"-kind of level.

      Yeah, I agree. In the US lobbying in not regulated but it's sure as hell documented and tracked, and it's also formal. X company donates to X politician through X SuperPAC or lobbying group. In the developing world it's X politician takes money that was going to X school/hospital/government owned company and physically brings it to [some place] in a suitcase and then bribe eachother. In Brazil it definitely tends to apply far more to politicians than normal people.

      They treat animals terribly here. It's not uncommon to see animals locked in very small cages where they can hardly turn. I've seen children punch dogs. My girlfriend works as a vet, and a lot of their customers are foreigners because on the whole, many locals just don't care.

      Over here some people in slums throw rocks at the dogs if they get angry.

      What I would add to this list is

      1: this one is for schools but the range of teenagers is far more varied. In my grade there is a group of weebs and not too far from them there are 'Chad' wannabes punching walls and doing cringy 'don't look at the OK in my hand or you will get punched' games and right next to them there will be a group of people who take their mobile Battle Royale games really seriously and they all interact fairly often unless they are introverted like the weebs.

      1 vote
  4. [4]
    stephen
    Link
    I'd like to invert this discussion since I, a W E S T E R N E R (read, relatively rich white-ish person), have a question for citizens of developing nations. Here's why I ask. I spend a lot of my...

    I'd like to invert this discussion since I, a W E S T E R N E R (read, relatively rich white-ish person), have a question for citizens of developing nations.

    What do you think about peasant agriculture? What social norms and opinions can you speak on regarding peasant agriculture?

    Here's why I ask.

    I spend a lot of my time trying to learn about what life for people like me, who use inordinate amounts of resources. It's obvious to me that electric cars, re-usable coffee mugs, and PV arrays aren't gonna cut it. We as the most intense consumers have to make radical changes to our relationship to material throughput and energy usage.

    In the end, a lot of these radical changes come together to somewhat resemble peasant agriculture: communal access to land, eating more of what you grow, relying less on money and "The Economy" for stuff, sharing, less atomized dwelling units, etc. etc. Yet, there is such a push in countries like China and India to move people away from this most sustainable way of life to a more W E S T E R N consumer middle class life - which as it turns out it totally soul suck and ruining the planet. What gives?!

    3 votes
    1. [3]
      Kuromantis
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      Because that's (presumably) what makes California have more money than India despite being 34 times less populous. What makes you have an iPhone be 1000 rather than 4200 'currency' (note that...

      Because that's (presumably) what makes California have more money than India despite being 34 times less populous. What makes you have an iPhone be 1000 rather than 4200 'currency' (note that wages do not account for currency devaluation so if my currency becomes 3 times cheaper everything you make will become 3 times more expensive). It's what supposedly makes AAA games cost 60 currency rather than up to 180. (Yes, 180 BRL for a triple-a game in Brazil.) It's presumably what makes you actually be a leader in world politics and what gives you a gdp of 23 trillion and have a GDP per capita of 60k a year. (Interpreted as "People make 60k dollars a year in the US") what apparently makes your country have 'no slums' (despite there being lots of homeless people) and little crime. People here see the US as a place where there is little violence and homelessness, where 1000 currency buys you an iPhone X rather than a Nintendo switch lite, where people earn 60k a year and have houses 4 times larger than in their home countries.

      Tl;dr intense naivete and consumerist syndrome.

      2 votes
      1. [2]
        stephen
        Link Parent
        I think using exploitative, coercive lending by the IMF and World Bank has a lot to do with that as well...

        Because that's (presumably) what makes California have more money than India despite being 34 times less populous.

        I think using exploitative, coercive lending by the IMF and World Bank has a lot to do with that as well...

        1. Kuromantis
          Link Parent
          After looking at the Wikipedia article for both, yeah they're definitely pretty biased for the west. I would have thought it was multinational money from poor nations that made the west stay so...

          After looking at the Wikipedia article for both, yeah they're definitely pretty biased for the west. I would have thought it was multinational money from poor nations that made the west stay so wealthy now (if I had to guess nearly all the money made on the Internet in the planet is presumably funneled into Silicon Valley because nearly every tech company is in there, which is potentially trillions that could presumably help many poor countries out, and that's not even mentioning many car and food companies)