Surprise! People in India are using free public Wi-Fi to watch porn

Free wifi LED sign

Photo via phive2015/Getty Images (Licensed)

Porn is the top search for commuters using new the Wi-Fi at Indian train stations.

Recently, Facebook and Google launched free Wi-Fi initiatives in India. According to data from RailTel, which has partnered with Google to offer wifi in 23 train stations, the most popular place to use Wi-Fi is Patna railway station in the state of Bihar. And what are people using Wi-Fi for? Mainly porn.

"More than any other railway station in the country, where free Wi-Fi service was launched, the Patna railway station is on the top in the country for using internet search, particularly search for porn sites," a RailTel official told the Economic Times. This would not be the first time a public Wi-Fi has been used for such purposes. New York City temporarily disabled internet kiosks after people were looking at porn, and Canterbury Cathedral had to get rid of the service for the same reason.

But why is everyone so shocked that, when given a service like free, unrestricted Wi-Fi, people will start looking at porn?

Though many statistics on porn habits come from sites bent on eradicating porn, numbers like “68 percent of churchgoing men” and “66 percent of all American men” still show that a majority of people have watched porn or watch it regularly. There’s nothing wrong with looking at porn, and though watching it in public where other people could see is certainly problematic, it’s not worth shutting down a valuable service like free Wi-Fi, like so many places have done.

If anything, this sounds like a job for a content blocker. 

Update Oct. 18, 12:48pm: In the hours since the Economic Times story picked up traction, a different RailTel official has come forward to deny that the free Wi-Fi is being used for porn. "RailTel, being an Internet Service Provider, does not keep watch over the web sites being browsed by the users," he told the Hindustan Times

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