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United States The Internet Technology

30% of Americans Aren't Ready For the Next Generation of Technology 191

sciencehabit writes: "Thanks to a decade of programs geared toward giving people access to the necessary technology, by 2013 some 85% of Americans were surfing the World Wide Web. But how effectively are they using it? A new survey suggests that the digital divide has been replaced by a gap in digital readiness. It found that nearly 30% of Americans either aren't digitally literate or don't trust the Internet. That subgroup tended to be less educated, poorer, and older than the average American."
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30% of Americans Aren't Ready For the Next Generation of Technology

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  • Re:Funny (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dougmc ( 70836 ) <> on Tuesday July 01, 2014 @06:34PM (#47364309) Homepage

    There's a difference between blindly trusting random crap you find on the Internet and not ever using it at all.

    At least in my circles, the truly smart people fit into neither category. That said, if you must pick one or the other ... the latter is preferable.

    But that's a false dichotomy ... even better is being able and willing to find things on the Internet, but having the wisdom to tell what's crap and what might be crap (and therefore needs to be confirmed) and what's probably accurate (but keep in mind, it still might not be.)

  • Re:Funny (Score:5, Interesting)

    by funwithBSD ( 245349 ) on Tuesday July 01, 2014 @07:13PM (#47364669)

    It is more like a U shape, with Distrust on the vertical and Knowledge on the horizontal axis.

    One end does not trust the internet because they don't know what is out there,

    the other end does not trust the internet because they know what is out there.

    Those in the middle are just knowledgeable enough to be dangerous.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 01, 2014 @07:33PM (#47364793)

    "Not one of us uses internet banking"

    I have sad news for you: your data is exposed whether you use it or you don't. If you've paid attention, all the big bank exploits recently have been through their back-end systems, not through desktop malware or browser exploits. Browsers have become sophisticated enough, especially Chrome, that they're no longer the low-hanging fruit.

    So unless you use a bank that somehow manages two completely different ledger and account systems, one which takes networked transactions and one which doesn't, you're only inconveniencing yourself. You should be far more worried about your server at restaurant copying your credit card number. And _please_ don't tell me that you use your debit card as a credit card. Now _that_ would be stupid, if you're trying to avoid the hassle of recouping stolen funds.

  • by SydShamino ( 547793 ) on Tuesday July 01, 2014 @07:37PM (#47364809)

    Most senior citizens (those 65 or older) became senior citizens since 1995, when the web started taking off. Many became senior citizens after 2005, when it had mostly saturated middle-class households.

    It's not so much that granny embraced the internet, it's that she embraced the internet and then aged into being "granny".

  • Re:Funny (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tlhIngan ( 30335 ) <slashdot&worf,net> on Wednesday July 02, 2014 @01:47AM (#47366469)

    My kids' school, they ban using Wiki for research.

    (Personally, I'd think that a perfect jumping-off point for teaching the difference between primary and secondary sources, critical reading, and source evaluation. But hey, what do I know, I'm not a teacher.)

    Uh, they probably ban it because it's a secondary source. You are fine at using it for a jumping off point, but that's all you can use it for - to jump off.

    You're not using wikipedia for research, you're using it for the background in order to do research.

    And it also means you don't copy and paste Wikipedia and hand it in )adding plagiarism to the all sorts of badness).

    Because you know kids would. Banning it probably is easier to describe to them, but any smart kid would just use it anyways and hide the fact that they used it by going to the original sources. *gasp* Research!

    It's the same as it was back in the old days where we were banned from using the encyclopedias. No one said we couldn't do it on our own time and then use the references in our final work...

Keep up the good work! But please don't ask me to help.