Letter: Will Google devices offer students skewed view of the world?

Editor: I am writing in response to the article entitled ‘A whole new (virtual) world’  (The Times, March 11).

I would like to voice some concerns I have with the new “Google Cardboard devices” that were recently tested out at Simonds Elementary and Lochiel U-Connect last week.

I do see that these new devices are extraordinary, in that they are able to give students a 360 degree view of a given area that is physically out of reach, however, I believe that there are problems associated with this new device.

Who will have access to these devices — private schools — public schools?

A device that allows the viewer to physically interact with the virtual space by turning his/her body or head cannot be cheap. If schools in the district have enough financial resources to be able to afford these devices then I believe that they should also have enough money to raise funds for schools in poverty stricken areas that are still struggling to fund breakfast programs for their students.

Furthermore, I believe that the images provided in these Google cardboard devices will give kids a picture perfect view of a not so picture perfect world.

The article makes clear that Google is willing to fill these devices with worldly images, such as breath taking views of the pyramids in Egypt, but I do not believe that the Google devices will ever show images of other, not-so-pretty worldly spectacles, such as the images available of the Egyptian riots in 2011.

I am worried that the images Google decides to install in these devices will give North American students a skewed idea of what is really going on in the world.

These devices should open up our students’ eyes to worldly events, not fill them further with ideologically infused images.

Kelsey Ann Oskam,

Langley

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