Essay about The Digital Divide

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The Digital Divide

A new generation is forming the way its members will be written into history books. These are the members of the digital culture, a lifestyle relying on the use of technology and the Internet as a tool of communication and information-sharing. Nevertheless, as with the generations of the past, some individuals are not participating in this new cultural experience. It is common knowledge that some citizens do not use the Internet. Many do not use the Internet simply due to economic or social restrictions that prevent them from easily accessing the technology. However, what is not as common is why some members of our society are even choosing not to use the Internet. “Access, Civic
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Census Bureau, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) performed the research study “A NATION ONLINE: How Americans Are Expanding Their Use Of The Internet.” It is a thorough survey of 137,259 individuals from 754 diverse geographic locations around the United States. The survey occurred in September, 2001. “Respondents,” as the bureau refers to them, took a survey via telephone and accurately provided this information about the members of the household. The households were broken down into individuals to further analyze differences in income, sex, age, education, location, and several other characteristics. Being a census, the bureau creates it only to gather the information. Organizations like the NTIA analyze the information with the goal to define the overall status of America’s population. The analysis of the statistics is able to show gaps in population that could affect the way the economy works.

Although the survey covered a vast amount of information, the only information necessary for this study is the data involving individuals who have chosen not to use the Internet. Chapter 8 of the report refers to the “unconnected” population. Here, the NTIA analyzes the percentage of the population that is not connected to the Internet and asks for their reasons. According to the Bureau’s census, as of September 2001, 46.1 percent of persons and 49.5 percent of households do not use the Internet (par.

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