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Education The Internet

Global Study Stresses Importance of Public Internet Access 24

Posted by samzenpus
from the these-tubes-are-your-tubes dept.
vinces99 writes "Millions of people in low-income countries still depend on public computer and Internet access venues despite the global proliferation of mobile phones and home computers. However, interest in providing such public access has waned in recent years, especially among development agencies, as new technologies become available. But a five-year, eight-country study recently concluded by researchers at the University of Washington Information School has found that community access to computer and Internet technology remains a crucial resource for connecting people to the information and skills they need in an increasingly digital world. The Global Impact Study of Public Access to Information & Communication Technologies surveyed 5,000 computer users at libraries, telecenters and cybercafés and 2,000 nonusers at home to learn about patterns of public access use. The researchers also surveyed 1,250 operators of public access venues and conducted seven in-depth case studies to examine issues that have generated controversy. The study was conducted in eight low- and middle-income countries on three continents: Bangladesh, Botswana, Brazil, Chile, Ghana, Lithuania, Philippines and South Africa."
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Global Study Stresses Importance of Public Internet Access

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    GISPAICT: Global Impact Study of Public Access to Information & Communication Technologies

  • Come on, jerks, the efficient solution has been known since 1980 [youtube.com].

  • by b4upoo (166390) on Wednesday July 10, 2013 @09:59PM (#44246143)

    Since the only computer connection for millions of Americans is the one at school, the one at work or the one at the library that puts the US in third world status as well. Not to mention that we have millions of people with zero net access at all. Net access of reasonable quality is expensive in the US as well. We have not touched the edge of getting America up and running yet.

    • by khallow (566160)

      Since the only computer connection for millions of Americans is the one at school, the one at work or the one at the library that puts the US in third world status as well.

      You could say the same about any other country too. And it's not that hard to afford an internet connection.

      We have not touched the edge of getting America up and running yet.

      Interesting how adding a few economically marginal people to the internet is supposed to be such a big deal. I'd rather get rid of the nonsense that keeps US businesses from employing US workers.

      • by kermidge (2221646)

        "You could say the same about any other country too."

        That's rather the point of the study, I thought.

        "And it's not that hard to afford an internet connection."

        Ahh. Unsupported assertion, methinks, without meaning offense. Relative, and all, to be sure, but in fact from my own observation, yes, for some, it _is_ that hard to afford an Internet connection - along with their own computer, knowledge, skill, wherewithal, electric capacity, etc., and to safely maintain said system to use the connection at all.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          I personally applaud the libraries for providing such access. In the 90s the public library was the only internet source I had; I wouldn't want to deny others the privilege I had.

        • by khallow (566160)

          but I seem to recall you once posted a remarkable story of how you went essentially "from rags to riches" - it was inspiring, I thought, and I applaud and am happy for you. However, I think that to sneer at those less fortunate, or who could not replicate your success, is a bit... unseemly. Just because some may be lazy or drug-addled is to me no reasonable reason to tar all with such a wide brush, nor deny them access.)

          In other words, "do it for the poor" is the Slashdot version of "do it for the children". I'll just say that I don't see the benefit in providing universal services, especially one of dubious value like internet access. For example, I use the internet primarily as a source of entertainment. I don't think anyone should pay for my service as a result.

          Second, I'm not rich nor have I ever been (though I have earned considerable income at times). I still need to work on occasion. Instead, I'm a hardcore saver

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I went directly to the web site of the folks that conducted the study. This was at the very top:


    Our Mission

    The Technology & Social Change Group (TASCHA) at the University of Washington Information School explores the design, use, and effects of information and communication technologies in communities facing social and economic challenges. With experience in 50 countries, TASCHA brings together a multidisciplinary network of social scientists, engineers, and development practitioners to conduct research, advance knowledge, create public resources, and improve policy and program design.

    Our purpose? To spark innovation and opportunities for those who need it most.

    Our People

    TASCHA brings together a multidisciplinary network of social scientists, engineers, development practitioners, and others to conduct research, advance knowledge, create public resources, and improve policy and program design

    In other words, this five year taxpayer funded study by researchers professionally committed to bringing the benefits of Internet-centric innovation to every corner of the globe, finally reached the conclusion that.... people in every corner of the globe desperately the need the benefits of Internet-centric innovation.

    Next!

    • What, you mean that the people of Ghana don't actually need high-speed internet access and would be better off spending their time not getting murdered by roving gang of thugs and warlords, and trying to find something to eat? How will they ever keep up with Game of Thrones? Didn't think of that, huh?

  • Some people have suffered unequal opportunities. Some can't read, some can't use a computer and some have over troubles with skills we call basic skills and take for granted. Some dude couldn't figure out that Asian, Europe, Africa, and South America are four continents not three.

  • by swillden (191260)

    This is why Google is working on project Loon. IMO, if it succeeds it will be the coolest and most impactful thing Google has ever done... and I include the search engine.

"It's curtains for you, Mighty Mouse! This gun is so futuristic that even *I* don't know how it works!" -- from Ralph Bakshi's Mighty Mouse

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