This Post by Ulf Wolf expands upon my post on Digital Divide and Gov 2.0.
I would add to my original post that in addition to the issues I laid out, there will be a wave of coming mergers and acquisitions both in social media and in Government 2.0 applications over the next few years that will impact this as well.
He makes some very interesting points including this:
“There is, of course, always that portion of society that can join the Internet Order, but chooses not to, much like they opt out of owning (and being enslaved to) a television, or even a telephone. This faction of society may never (and happily at that) log in anywhere. Also, these folks will not suffer the least from not joining up; they most likely lead full, albeit unconventional, lives just fine.
But, no doubt, as the Digital Divide goes, this faction does in no way constitute a majority of those left behind.
The truly stranded are those who would jump at the chance of joining the Internet world, given the opportunity–be it economical, educational, or both.
With mobile networks growing in size, quality and speed almost daily, the foundation is there, or will soon be, to build that bridge, leaving the true ravine as an economical and/or educational one.
Mr. Silberberg suggests that, “Here in the U.S. no Government 2.0 program should be funded without addressing the Digital Divide access issues, or at least examining alternative information distribution methods.”
I second that view, and would add that as the Internet becomes a more and more integral part of our social fabric, providing affordable entry into the Internet world should be a government obligation on par with schooling and indigent health care.
In fact, “access” is fast approaching the status of a basic human right (at least in the west), without which survival might be impaired or threatened.”