According to Margaret Rouse, “Digital divide is a term that refers to the gap between demographics and regions that have access to modern information and communications technology, and those that don’t or have restricted access. This technology includes the telephone, television, personal computers and the Internet”. Nowadays, technologies are a part of our lives. Most people cannot leave without it especially the younger generation.
Everyone thinks that in a digital world everyone would have a chance to participate, but that’s not true. There is a ‘digital divide’ a gap between those who can buy and use digital technologies easily and those who cannot. This isn’t just a case of poorer countries and richer countries, the digital divide exists here in Australia. On this topic, we discussed in class that the gaps are usually concerned with age, income, disability and community type. First, older people are less likely to use the Internet than younger people. Second, the cost of connecting to the Internet has come down in recent years but it is still an expense for people who have fewer incomes (Bentley, ABC, 2014, the digital divide in Australia). Third, people who live in a rural area with limited broadband access are less likely to use the Internet than the urban or suburban area. For example, the broadband of some rural areas is limited to a speed of 28.8 Kbit/s rather than a speed that more than 100 Kbit/s in an urban or suburban area. And some adults with a disability do not use the Internet. However, there is an organisation made a solution of non-participation which is the one laptop for each child program to help students to participate to the digital world.
As a result, I cannot image that our lives without digital technologies. I cannot image in the world I can’t send emails, cannot Google information, and couldn’t buy things online, study online or access information. I think if there is no internet or technologies we will be backwards of the times. However, we cannot be addicted to it because it may create some problems. For instance, I always see people play their phones rather than talk to their family or friends. Finally, we should always communicate with family and friends and we also need to help the non-participate people bridge the digital divide.
Howell. 2012. Teaching with ICT. Digital Pedagogies for Collaboration and Creativity. Oxford