Germany: Locals react to Dresden district shutting off internet on two Sundays

Dresden citizens reacted on Thursday to local politicians’ motion to switch off the internet access of Dresden's Neustadt district on two Sundays in autumn, in a move to support local commerce. «I was very surprised by the fact that they passed the bill. The first time I read about it I thought it was a joke and I was very impressed. But then I thought about it a bit more and I think it makes sense,» said a resident adding that she was initially surprised it was technically possible to switch a city's internet off for a whole day. «The statistics show that most of the kids spend between seven and eight hours using a smartphone and I think that’s too much especially because we have a great neighbourhood and we have many stores so people can try just to enjoy themselves out there. We have a lot of space for people to sit outside and relax,” said a young local. The unorthodox bill was backed up by the Left Party, the Greens and the right-wing AfD party following a proposal by the satiric party «Die Party» to shut down the Internet in Dresden on two days, to compensate local commerce over the shopping restrictions during COVID-19 lockdown. While shops are generally closed on Sunday in Germany, the initiative will allow local businesses to open on those two Sundays with no internet, during fall, in the hip and busy shopping district Neustadt of the Lower Saxony city.

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