Social and Digital Inclusion

November 29, 2015

I’m a bit late on this one, but last week (21-29 November 2015) was “Social Inclusion Week” here in Australia.

To mark the week, the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) published a short piece on 23 November 2015 entitled “Why digital inclusion matters”.  Key points from that article:

  • Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show that “in 2012–13, 98 per cent of households with a household income of $120,000 or more had internet access, compared to only 57 per cent of households with a household income of less than $40,000, suggesting an ‘affordability divide’ when it comes to broadband.”
  • “Lack of digital literacy is an increasingly significant issue as more government services move online as part of the Federal Government’s Digital First Strategy which will require all services and public interactions to be available online by 2017.”  ACCAN’s concern is that “a lack of digital literacy will affect some consumers’ ability to access essential Government services”, particularly because of our continuing need to update our “digital capability to stay in touch and [be] included due to updates to technology and changing applications”.

Click here to see my recent articles on digital inclusion, including my paper on that topic that I presented to the Communications Policy and Research Forum in Sydney in November 2011.

Millions of Americans still go without internet – the bookless library arrives to assist

October 12, 2013

In this world of what we in the middle upper middle and professional classes think of universally connected, it’s a telling reminder that in Bexar County Texas (San Antonio ), one third of residents do not have internet access at home,

Yes you read that one correctly. One third.

So reports Time magazine in its October 14th issue here in Australia (September 13th online), in an article about a new totally digitalibrary called BiblioTech.

As I have written about in my digital inclusion posts, good internet access is the new dividing line in our modern world.  We are at a stage in our evolution when teenagers and young people will pay their phone bills rather than eating; that’s how important digital connectivity is.