The Digital Divide and Its Effects

Topics: Internet, Africa, Old age Pages: 2 (589 words) Published: March 17, 2013
‘Explain the digital divide and its effects’

The term ‘digital divide’ refers to the breach between those who have access to information and communication tools such as the internet and those who do not. It is commonly thought that the digital divide is mainly between the rich and the poor; however there are many other factors that lead to this. These factors are characterized by community, ethnic, technological and age groups. Therefore, this essay will be focusing on the explanation of the digital divide and its effects. According to the 1999 U.S. Department of Commerce report: falling through the net, it has been stated that some communities are gaining greater access to information technologies whilst others are falling behind. This is fairly prejudiced as those who do not have access to the internet may be because they live in rural areas. Countries in Southern Africa such as Zambia are really suffering due to this. By having internet, not only will these Zambians be more aware of what’s happening in the world, but they will also be able to access information to widen their knowledge. However, those who live in the urban areas such as Lagos, have the contact to technology. This not only creates a division between people who come from the same nationality, but it also makes the people disperse and lose their brotherhood. Elderly people are the next biggest factor that contributes to the digital divide. Most elderly people are uneducated and thus do not understand the importance of knowing about technology. The elderly population also might have physical limitations that may preclude them from accessing the Internet.  As we age, our bodies deteriorate, our eyes may not be as clear as they once were, our hearing may become less acute, and arthritis may make one’s hands harder and harder to move, or we fall victim to Alzheimer’s disease. In addition to this, a person’s lack of education may be because of financial or cultural reasons. They may not be able...
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