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Tech 621 digital_divide

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  • 1. The Digital Divide Dark Social Implications for Society
  • 2. What is the Digital Divide
    • The gap between individuals who use/access technology, and those who do not or cannot access technology.
    Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK) Putnam (2000) called this phenomena a "cyberapartheid." (175)
  • 3.  
  • 4. Who is actually using the Internet? (According to Political Science/Public Opinion Literature)
      • Mostly younger individuals
      • Higher educated/income
      • Political Activists 
      • Government agencies
  • 5. Why is the Digital Divide such a problem?
  • 6. Digital Divide is also a potential problem for social science
    • Public Opinion polling methodology may become more difficult to scientifically conduct.
  • 7. Rural vs. Urban Internet Access
  • 8. The Echo-chamber problem (an example) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qtzz0gfe2c ORIGINAL STORY: President Obama is holding a bipartisan Health Care Summit at the White House. (Feb. 24, 2010)
  • 9. The Echo-chamber problem According to Best and Kruger (2005) the internet has an inherent bias because of who is using it: Socially liberal Economically conservative Very few are interested in "hearing the other side" (Mutz 2006).  Maybe Bloggers are doing this (Lawrence, Sides, and Farrell 2010)?
  • 10. So what should we take away from all of this?
    • - Inequality of users may be under-represented in many aspects
    • - Internet accessibility is not necessarily universal
    • - Lack of Internet access is a possible hindrance to public services
    • - Political opinion is not reflective of the general public
    • - The future of the digital divide