The consensus of the plethora of statistics is that only about 7% of the world's population is on-line. In global terms the dichotomy of 'haves' and 'have nots' is vast. With the potential benefit to society and its citizens this virtual divide should be a cause for great concern.
There has always existed an unfair distribution of access to the tools of social mobility, but for the first time in history a technology exists that, to a large extent, can level the playing field. When someone logs onto the Internet, the wealth of information at that person's fingertips does not care if he or she is rich or poor, in the majority or a minority. It simply sits there and waits to be used by whoever can get to it. But there is a problem. To date there has been an unfair access to the Internet that mirrors the socioeconomic divisions in society. This unfair access is called the Digital Divide and it has implications that reach to the very social and economic core of our nation.
In an effort to provide policy makers and private sector leaders with some of the insights they need to deal with the difficult issues surrounding the Digital Divide, Gartner provides a National overview report as well as individual state and regional report cards from an analysis of surveys with 40,000 American households.
Last updated 2002/01/30
© J.A.N. Lee, 1995-2002.