Due to the differences in personal and socioeconomic status, technological advancement, geographical configuration and political goodwill, access to digital technology is widely varied. In one a single country, there are those people who have full access to computers, mobile phones and tablets, while in the same country, some people do not have any access to such devices. Therefore, he digital divide is very wide.
Measures to reduce the digital divide
Production of low cost computer and mobile devices allows for ownership of digital technology by people of low economic status. Decentralization of computer manufacturing companies to other parts of the world opens up these parts to digital access.
implications of digital divided in the society
Unequal possession of information is detriment to economic and political dealings. The bigger the digital divide, the bigger the gap between the poor and the rich. Those with access to information continue reaping from this advantage at the expense of less informed individuals.
Computer technology is an essential social and economic tool in the 21st century. Today, it has been incorporated into almost all facets of the society starting from communication to voting to banking. Ownership of a computer device, regardless of its simplicity or complexity, symbolizes knowledge and exposure. Computers have been modified to suit the different needs of communication, business and information dissemination. The global community has been in the recent past advocating for development of information technology and equality in the access of the same. Many countries in the world have put in place policies to promote computer innovation. The United States, in particular, has played a significant role in nurturing innovation in the field of computer science. The Silicon Valley is the heart of information technology in the world, where startups are incubated and motivated to make even greater strides in computer technology. But why are people so enthusiastic about this technology? Currently, it has been proven that anything is possible with computer technology. The world can be connected easily through the web, making the proverbial global village smaller and smaller. Inaccessibly of digital technology to people of lower economic status is a hindrance to achievement of an all connected globe. In the light of this observation, several technical and political measures have been put in place to ensure that there is relative equality in acquisition and possession of computer technology. So, what measures are being instituted in different political and scientific spheres to reduce the digital divide?
There are three four factors that determine the extent of digital divide: Material access, usage access, motivational access and skills access. Material access is in turn determined by socio-demographic factors like age and sex (van Djik 225). According to van Djik, the drive to access of informational technology is a personally generated. Van Djik posits that there must be a wish to own a computer device as well the effort to have the device connected to the internet. He provides four factors that diminish the desire to own a computer device and getting it connected to the internet: lack of usage opportunities, time unavailability, lack of money and lack of skills (van Djik 226). Additionally, usage access is a dependent factor in the acquisition of digital media. According to van Djik, this factor is measured by usage time, usage application, broadband versus narrowband use and creative use (van Djik 229). Finally, lack of computer usage skill is a significant contributor to the digital divide (van Djik 228). In the light of these four factors, reduction of the digital divide must incorporate mitigation of the above personal and societal limitations
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