How does digital divide influence the development of digital societies?
Digital divide refers to ‘the uneven distribution of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in society.’(Eva Johanna Schweitzer, 2015). It can be regarded as the technology gap between rich and poor. In general, digital divide contains differences in accessibility of internet and information literacy. Even as internet access has become increasingly ubiquitous, such difference still remains in the world, especially between industrialized and developing countries. According to Tom Curran (2017), the rate of internet access in developing nations namely Seychelles and South Africa reaches only 50 percent, while others are even worse, below two percent. Thus, this blog post will analyze how such phenomenon brings the digital societies disadvantages.
The digital divide has particularly far-reaching consequences with regarding to education. Schools in less developed areas can not provide students with advanced learning devices like computers. In this case, children lose their opportunities to access to better learning resources. Compared with students in developing countries, the knowledge they learn may be limited and also more difficult to obtain. Matt Britland (2016) points that the future trend of education technology is likely to be completely cloud and anywhere access. In poor countries, inadequate access to technology can hinder people from grasping IT skills, which are regard as an indispensable part of technique in contemporary society. People who lack of basic tech skills find it harder when it comes to employment, since the low information literacy put them at a competitive disadantage. As a result, the development of the society will definitely stagnate with a large number of computer illiteracy caused by digital divide.
In conclusion, digital divide hinders the development of digital societies. People who suffer digital exclusion are easier to weeded out in the fierce competition thus feeling missed out in social life as well.
Eva Johanna Schweitzer(2015). Digital Divide. Retrieved from https://www.britannica.com/topic/digital-divide
Tom Curran (2017). THE DIGITAL DIVIDE IN DEVELOPING NATIONS: POLICY IMPACT ON THE INTERNET IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA. Retrieved from http://chicagopolicyreview.org/2017/04/12/the-digital-divide-in-developing-nations-policy-impact-on-the-internet-in-sub-saharan-africa/
Matt Britland (2016). What about the digital divide in education? Retrieved from https://tomorrowslearners.com/what-about-the-digital-divide-in-education/