A variety of digital injustices

After a global study, the digital gap is open where there are already social injustices

Who lives in a developing country, has uneven worse opportunities to use the internet for use than someone living in a western industrialization. This statement is undoubtedly correct. But the chance that a modern businessman from Shanghai, with universities education and good income, makes use of the Internet, could be quite high than that of an old farmer from a depleted village somewhere in Sud-Italy.

There is not only the "Digital divide" between rich and poor countries, but a variety of digital injustices between sexes, classes and generations. This is the core statement of a meta-study over the "Digital divide" of "AMD Global Consumer Advisory Boards", created by scientists of the Center for Urban and Community Studies at the University of Toronto. For the study, data of national and international investigations of the last ten years were systematized and compared with each other. Data from eight countries were examined (USA, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Sud-Korea, Japan, China and Mexico). It was not about creating rankings, but the question of what the "digital gap" is and how she developed in the different countries.

Of the "Digital divide" First of all, is also one "Divide" the technical infrastructure. A functioning telephone network, sufficient Internet capacity and not least a reliable supply of electricity are necessary conditions for use of the Internet. In developed countries, however, there are socio-economic factors that the "Digital divide" determine. The most important thing is the economic factor, because whoever can not afford computers and online bookings, is less likely to use the Internet.

But costs are not the only problem, there are more "Gap". You can find yourself between rural and urban areas, between the generations, sexes and the different educational levels. In some countries is the "Digital divide" also an ethnic. So there is data that demonstrates that in the USA the share of African American Internet users stayed far behind the proportion of Americans European or Asian descent.

Even if the economic factor in many of these "Gaps" has a gross importance, it is also social and cultural factors that cause digital injustices. Thus, for example, an educational disinterest of technology or discouragement can complicate the access of women to women as a man-understanding technoculture. Missing social networks, such as a critical mass of friends and neighbors, which give suggestion and guidance to use the Internet, can explain the lower interest in the Internet at external people or in rural areas.

According to the multiple "Digital divides" There is no general pattern in the development of the composition of Internet users. Even a wide distribution of the Internet within a society does not mean that it automatically produces digital justice. For example, in the US and Japan, countries with a high number of internet users, the trend gives that the socio-economic gap of the Internet becomes smaller, it increases in Germany and the Great Britain, although in these countries the number of Internet users high is. The proportion of low-income people in the entirety of Internet users rises in some countries, in others he falls. The same applies to the "Gender gap". In Germany, the proportion of female users, during the US, Japan and Great Britain, is more likely to grow the proportion of manner. In Japan, the ratio in the users of mobile Internet access is even vice versa, they are much stronger used by women.

But if social conditions reproduce on the Internet, thus also reproducing existing social inequalities. "The uneven dissemination and use of the Internet is shaped through social inequalities and forms social inequalities", write the authors of the study. Of the "Digital divide" there is exactly where social injustices exist. Since the Internet can give those who use it, economic and social benefits, it strengthens these injustices. A fight against the "Digital divide" must therefore not be conducted alone in the field of technology, but ultimately is a very traditional fight against social injustice.

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