Tag Archives: Digital Divide

Multnomah County Library launches $500,000 study focused on bridging ‘digital divide’

“The Multnomah County Library is teaming up with Portland State University to tackle the “digital divide” between low-income people and their wealthier counterparts nationwide. Library leaders announced plans this week to launch an extensive study of low-income library users’ technology habits and needs. They’ll share the results of that study with colleagues across the nation, in hopes of sparking widespread improvements in the way libraries cater to patrons with limited technology access. “A lack of basic computer and internet skills, or even a lack of comfort with those tools or access to those tools, can make it really hard to search for jobs, to access health information, to get in touch with family and friends,” said Amy Honisett, a Multnomah County librarian working on the study.” (via OregonLive.com)

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Census Bureau Report Details Rising Internet Use and Shows Impact of Smartphones on Digital Divide

“While disparities in Internet use persist among racial and ethnic groups, smartphones appear to be helping to bridge the digital divide, according to a report issued today by the U.S. Census Bureau. The findings are part of the latest Census Bureau report, Computer and Internet Use in the United States: 2011 [PDF], which provides analysis of computer and Internet use for households and individuals. The information comes from data collected as part of the Current Population Survey’s 2011 Computer and Internet Use Supplement, which was sponsored and funded by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). The report also features a table that places users along a “connectivity continuum” and shows that a sizeable percentage of Internet users now make their online connections both inside and outside the home and from multiple devices.” (via U.S. Census Bureau)

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How Teachers Are Using Technology at Home and in Their Classrooms

“A survey of teachers who instruct American middle and secondary school students finds that digital technologies have become central to their teaching and professionalization. At the same time, the internet, mobile phones, and social media have brought new challenges to teachers, and they report striking differences in access to the latest digital technologies between lower and higher income students and school districts.”

via Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project

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Down and out, but online at the library

“Murray Carter, 56, is living a life without luxury. He’s out of work. He sleeps at the Weingart Center on skid row. He’s hoping for a job as a cook. He needs to go online to find one. But he’s worlds away from affording either a computer or Internet access. Well before the Central Library opens at 10 a.m., Carter waits out front to get in and grab a computer terminal. Toni Albert, 23, of East L.A. takes night nursing classes at community college. Her mom helps by looking after her baby. But Albert also needs a computer and one’s out of reach for now. So she waits, too, holding 7-month-old Zariyah to her chest.”

via LA Times

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