The global digital divide also contributes to the inequality of access to goods and services available through technology. Computers and the Internet provide users with improved education, which can lead to higher wages; the people living in nations with limited access are therefore disadvantaged. Some people argue that basic necessities need to be considered before achieving digital inclusion, such as an ample food supply and quality health care.
Minimizing the global digital divide requires considering and addressing the following types of access:. Involves "the distribution of ICT devices per capita…and land lines per thousands".
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This access barrier is also addressed in Article 21 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by the United Nations. The cost of ICT devices, traffic, applications, technician and educator training, software, maintenance and infrastructures require ongoing financial means.
Empirical tests have identified that several socio-demographic characteristics foster or limit ICT access and usage. Among different countries, educational levels and income are the most powerful explanatory variables, with age being a third one. While a Global Gender Gap in access and usage of ICT's exist, empirical evidence show that this due to unfavorable conditions with respect to employment, education and income and not to technophobia or lower ability.
In the contexts under study, women with the prerequisites for access and usage turned out to be more active users of digital tools than men. In order to use computer technology, a certain level of information literacy is needed. Further challenges include information overload and the ability to find and use reliable information. Computers need to be accessible to individuals with different learning and physical abilities including complying with Section of the Rehabilitation Act as amended by the Workforce Investment Act of in the United States. Recently situations in Iran and China have denied people the ability to access certain websites and disseminate information.
Iran has prohibited the use of high-speed Internet in the country and has removed many satellite dishes in order to prevent the influence of Western culture , such as music and television. Many experts claim that bridging the digital divide is not sufficient and that the images and language needed to be conveyed in a language and images that can be read across different cultural lines. In the early 21st century, residents of developed countries enjoy many Internet services which are not yet widely available in developing countries, including:.
There are four specific arguments why it is important to "bridge the gap": . While these four arguments are meant to lead to a solution to the digital divide, there are a couple other components that need to be considered. The first one is rural living versus suburban living. Rural areas used to have very minimal access to the Internet, for example. However, nowadays, power lines and satellites are used to increase the availability in these areas.
Another component to keep in mind is disabilities. Some people may have the highest quality technologies, but a disability they have may keep them from using these technologies to their fullest extent. It has also been suggested that there is a correlation between democrat regimes and the growth of the Internet. One hypothesis by Gullen is, "The more democratic the polity, the greater the Internet use Government can try to control the Internet by monopolizing control" and Norris et al.
From an economic perspective, Pick and Azari state that "in developing nations…foreign direct investment FDI , primary education, educational investment, access to education, and government prioritization of ICT as all important". There are projects worldwide that have implemented, to various degrees, the solutions outlined above. Rahnman explains that "the main role of ICT intermediaries is defined as an organization providing effective support to local communities in the use and adaptation of technology.
Most commonly an ICT intermediary will be a specialized organization from outside the community, such as a non-governmental organization, local government, or international donor. On the other hand, a social intermediary is defined as a local institution from within the community, such as a community-based organization. Other proposed solutions that the Internet promises for developing countries are the provision of efficient communications within and among developing countries, so that citizens worldwide can effectively help each other to solve their own problems.
Grameen Banks and Kiva loans are two microcredit systems designed to help citizens worldwide to contribute online towards entrepreneurship in developing communities. Its aim is to find and implement long-term, sustainable solutions which will increase the availability of educational technology and resources to domestic and international communities.
The CommuniTech project strives to empower underserved communities through sustainable technology and education. Building on the premise that any effective solution must be decentralized, allowing the local communities in developing nations to generate their own content, one scholar has posited that social media—like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter—may be useful tools in closing the divide. According to Facebook, more than seventy-five percent of its users reside outside of the US.
Amongst them, are its ability to offer a means of interacting with others, user-friendly features, and the fact that most sites are available at no cost. Some cities in the world have started programs to bridge the digital divide for their residents, school children, students, parents and the elderly. One such program, founded in , was sponsored by the city of Boston and called the Boston Digital Bridge Foundation. Free Basics is a partnership between social networking services company Facebook and six companies Samsung, Ericsson, MediaTek, Opera Software, Nokia and Qualcomm that plans to bring affordable access to selected Internet services to less developed countries by increasing efficiency, and facilitating the development of new business models around the provision of Internet access.
In the whitepaper  realised by Facebook's founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, connectivity is asserted as a "human right", and Internet. The websites are available for free without data charges, and include content about news, employment, health, education and local information etc.
1. Actual Situation
By introducing people to the benefits of the internet through these websites, we hope to bring more people online and help improve their lives. However, Free Basics is also accused of violating net neutrality for limiting access to handpicked services. Despite a wide deployment in numerous countries, it has been met with heavy resistance notably in India where the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India eventually banned it in Several projects to bring internet to the entire world with a satellite constellation have been devised in the last decade, one of these being Starlink by Elon Musk 's company SpaceX.
Unlike Free Basics, it would provide people with a full internet access and would not be limited to a few selected services.
In the same week Starlink was announced, serial-entrepreneur Richard Branson announced his own project OneWeb , a similar constellation with approximately satellites that has already procured communication frequency licenses for their broadcast spectrum and could possibly be operational as early as in The biggest hurdle of these projects is the astronomical financial and logistical costs of launching so many satellites. After the failure of previous satellite-to-consumer space ventures, satellite industry consultant Roger Rusch said "It's highly unlikely that you can make a successful business out of this.
Each laptop belongs to an individual child and provides a gateway to digital learning and Internet access. The XO laptops are designed to withstand more abuse than higher-end machines, and they contain features in context to the unique conditions that remote villages present. Each laptop is constructed to use as little power as possible, have a sunlight-readable screen, and is capable of automatically networking with other XO laptops in order to access the Internet—as many as machines can share a single point of access.
Several of the 67 principles adopted at the World Summit on the Information Society convened by the United Nations in Geneva in directly address the digital divide: . From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Internet An Opte Project visualization of routing paths through a portion of the Internet.
Information infrastructure. Book Index Outline. This article may contain too much repetition or redundant language. Please help improve it by merging similar text or removing repeated statements.
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This section needs to be updated. Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. August Main article: Information and Communication Technologies for Development. Main article: Free Basics. Main article: World Summit on the Information Society.
Falling through the net: A survey of the have nots in rural and urban America. The digital divide: Facing a crisis or creating a myth? Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology. New Economy Handbook, p. Virtual Inequality: Beyond the Digital Divide. American Libraries. Pages in Companion to Development Studies , 3rd edition, V.
The impact of Internet in rural India - Paris Innovation Review
Desai, and R. Potter eds. Telecommunications Policy. Retrieved October 26, Retrieved June 25, The New York Times. Retrieved July 8, Cambridge University Press. Economic Growth Center. Generations and their gadgets. Journal of Information Technology. Who's not online and why? Pew Research Center, Hilbert, Martin. December 2, The Information Society. Digital divide: conceptual discussions and prospect, In W.
Kim, T. Wang Ling, Y. Park Eds. Electronic Library.
The Development Dimension Internet Access For Development
Latinos and Digital Technology, J Educ Health Promot. Urban Affairs Review. Archived from the original on April 22, China Internet Network Information Center. January From "Archived copy" PDF. Low-income households have lower rates of in-home Internet connectivity compared with higher-income groups. Connectivity rates are particularly low among HUD-assisted renter households, who are also more likely to depend exclusively on smartphones and other handheld devices to access the Internet in the home.
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