Today we find that while availability is still an issue in some locations, the new digital divide not only references the digital “haves and have nots,” but also recognizes that people of different ages, races, ethnicities and geographies access the Internet in different ways and utilize it for different purposes. This session referenced some of the most contemporary data to explore both the older and newer dimensions of the digital divide.
What we’ve seen through the conference is that the questions have shifted from “why would I need broadband” to “why don’t I have it.” The presentations we saw today helped to frame the reasons why.
Jack Geller started by observing that there is no clear line for the digital divide anymore – people are coming through different doors. Mobile access has been a game changer; suddenly you don’t need a computer to get online anymore.