One thing that all parents share is common disdain for how much internet time their children often get. It’s understandable considering we are currently living in the digital age. Tons of kids would prefer to surf the web or talk to their friends via some sort of social media platform or video game. A father in France was tired of his children staying on their devices throughout the night, so he used a signal jammer to stifle the internet for his kids. However, the signal jammer was too powerful and ended up cutting the internet for the entire town of Messanges. We certainly get how a frustrated father could get, but maybe use a smaller signal jammer next time.
Signal jammers are illegal in France, as well as the US, as signal jamming can effectively knock out a satellite tower’s ability to relay phone calls and more in the area. This could greatly interfere with emergency situations such as ambulance calls or 9-1-1 calls. The internet had apparently been knocked for so many people, that droves of complaints came rushing in. A mobile carrier had contacted the French Agence Nationale des fréquences (ANFR), which is the national broadcast regulator, about the heavy outages. When they had arrived and questioned the man with the jammer, he allegedly stated that he was only trying to stop his children from using their devices from midnight to 3 a.m., to get them all to bed. The jammer in question was clearly more powerful than he had originally thought.
Although this is certainly a story to which most parents can relate, the man is now potentially looking at up to six months in jail and a hefty fine of 30,000 euros. That’s just over $33,000 USD. There are better ways to get your children to stop using their devices than to knock out the internet for an entire town. Just lock them up for a few hours a night or send them to bed without dinner. We’re not trying to tell anyone how to parent here but facing that many consequences for stopping the usage of devices is extreme. Signal jammers aren’t the everyday used item, so common sense should have dictated to not use such a device.
Hopefully, the mobile network and ANFR can come to some agreement to allow the man to not be thrown into jail, as the reasoning behind such a wild stunt is sort of warranted. However, again, we understand the dangers of knocking out the internet for an entire town. There are plenty of tips and tricks used in new devices that can certainly limit usage. Phone locks with passwords functionality and the like. Maybe this story has a happier ending and the man in question is hired after he is the one who built such an effective signal jammer.
The internet is clearly a powerful medium in our everyday lives, and this father had enough. The signal jammer he decided to use was just too powerful. If he wasn’t willing to take away his children’s devices, he is sure to want to take them away once he gets out of jail. Or if he is only subject to the fine, he might not even be able to afford to pay for their devices any longer. He might come out on top after all.