The West Virginia Town Where Wi-Fi is Banned
Tired of the constant buzz and glow of electronic devices? You might try planning a holiday to the little town of Green Bank, West Virginia, where cellphones, Wi-Fi and bluetooth are completely banned.
If this puts you in mind of the town that banned dancing in 80s classic Footloose, you wouldn’t be the only one, but there’s a much better reason behind Green Bank’s Wi-Fi no-fly zone. The reason you won’t be checking your emails in Green Bank is because the town is located in the middle of the 13,000 square-mile National Radio Quiet Zone, where scientists use satellites to transmit signals into space.
Green Bank is home to the world’s largest steerable satellite, which can be interrupted by signals sent through the airwaves by Wi-Fi, radio, TV and a whole host of other modern devices. The town’s 149 residents can still access the internet, but they’re confined to laggy dial-up speeds to meet with signal requirements. Since the beginning of this modern digital culture, the town has seen an influx of residents who believe that wireless signals are harmful to their health.
To allow scientists to operate the satellites in peace, Green Bank has completely banned any electronic transmitting devices; there is even a police officer who patrols the streets in search of rebel signals or Wi-Fi interruption. The only exception made in the town is for first responders, who are allowed to use radios to communicate during emergencies.