JOUR 4551: Blog Entry #3: Internet Access for All
I've been thinking a lot about the topic on internet access since March 11's class. The discussion on the digital divide among people with access and knowledge of how to use the internet and those who don't interest me.
As a class, we discussed some options that can help close this divide. They include digital technology centers (community centers) where people can use and take classes, the concept of one laptop per child in public schools, and more.
In class, we were discussing about what move of action would be most effective in closing the divide; I think setting up wireless internet everywhere is the best action.
This is a very Utopian thought, but if we could figure out a way to set up wireless internet EVERYWHERE, many issues regarding internet access would be resolved. Just think, some people out there can't afford computers/laptops, and internet access for their homes. Others, such as immigrants, can't speak English very well so they're unable to use it as a medium for communication (as mentioned in class about Latino women). As time goes on, it becomes essential for everyone to have internet access and to know how to use it.
The idea that applying for jobs is almost completely online now is also interesting to me. People who are behind in technology need to catch up fast or otherwise they would have trouble finding a job.
In order to provide wireless internet everywhere, technology needs to improve to accommodate the society's needs. If I had to guess, I'd say that towers are not strong enough to get every square yard of an area. They would probably have to be placed in every corner of every block to be anywhere near successful. Plus, citizens in suburbs might think they are too ugly to be placed by their lawns. Another thing too, it would be difficult to get these towers placed in rural areas.
With time, digital companies could redesign the towers to emit stronger signal so less can be built. Studies of rural towns and farms would need to be studied before determining where to place towers in these areas.
If this is going to take place, citizens could pay a federal tax and that would be the only cost.
Yet the benefits would outweigh the costs because with wireless internet everywhere, low-income people would only need to save money to buy a computer. No matter where they are, internet-savvy people could help those who have no idea how to use the machine.
Wireless internet can be a big convenience for everyone.