I have some not-at-all-bad news. The folks at Redistributing the Future have computed the list of the “worst connected big cities” and we’re not on the list. Small victory – but nothing wrong with celebrating a small victory.
I am so impressed with the legwork on this; they created two lists. One just tracks Internet household use; the other tracks fixed connections. Internet use includes dialup and mobile access. The information is based on a new Census question – asking households if they connect. So it’s reflective of use, not access. Actually they ask a series of question that I hope Redistributing the Future will dig into another time (Or I hope I find time to dig in.) because they ask about use of computer (vs device or smartphone) and Internet access (and spell out options) and of course as part of the Census, this information can be cross tabulated with so much demographic information.
I am dismayed at the response. In Laredo TX, 40 percent of households do not have access to the Internet. In Detroit, almost 57 percent of households do not have access to a fixed broadband subscription. That amazes me. Lazily rounding up or down – half of these households aren’t online. And again that includes no mobile access.
I’ll share one of the charts below. Nice to see Minnesota is not on the list. But that doesn’t get us off the hook. We want to make sure we staff off these lists!