Digital Divide

It’s time that we had a digital Constitutional Convention

Illustration of Washington Constitutional Convention 1787

Is it time to organize a digital constitutional convention on the future of the internet? In a thought-provoking op-ed published in The Hill, Alan S. Inouye, director of the American Library Association’s (ALA) Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP) calls on the nation’s leaders in government, philanthropy, and the not-for-profit sector to convene a digital constitutional convention for the future ... Read More »

Creating a fair digital society

Susan Crawford, Co-Director, Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University Sir Tim Berners-Lee, Inventor, World Wide Web

How can the nation’s leaders, policymakers and community institutions work together to create an equitable digital society? That was the broad question asked this week at the launch of NetGain, a day-long symposium that gathered the world’s government, philanthropy, business and technology leaders to launch a major new partnership, explore shared principles, and get ambitious about the next generation of ... Read More »

Public libraries top public Wi-Fi spot for African Americans, Latinos

Patrons using Wi-Fi at the MLK Digital Commons in Washington D.C.

A first-of-its-kind survey (pdf) finds that public libraries are the most common public Wi-Fi access point for African Americans and Latinos—with roughly one-third of these communities using public library Wi-Fi. This is true for 23 percent of white people, who list school as their top public Wi-Fi spot. The study of Wi-Fi usage patterns by John Horrigan and Jason Llorenz ... Read More »

Looking ahead- replacing bureaucracy with smartphones?

This week, I attended an event at the American Enterprise Institute, “Veterans and their smartphones: Creating a 21st-century veterans service system” that featured former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. In his discussion, he spoke passionately about the bureaucratic failings of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), highlighting recent, high-profile scandals. Mr. Gingrich bypassed any calls for reform, advocating instead for “imagination ... Read More »

Improving digital inclusion in Native communities

Today, the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museums (ATALM) released the study, Digital Inclusion in Native Communities: The Role of Tribal Libraries (pdf). The national study is the first to provide comprehensive data on the structure, activities, and needs of tribal libraries as they improve broadband access and digital literacy in Native communities. Key findings from the study: One ... Read More »