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Communications of the ACM

ACM Opinion

The U.S. Has a Historic Opportunity to Bridge the Digital Divide


Montage shows person typing on a keyboard.

Credit: Jacqui VanLiew/Getty Images.

Access to affordable, reliable, high-speed Internet is a civil right. For those who remain on the wrong side of the digital divide, economic, educational, and civic engagement opportunities are increasingly out of reach. The consequences of not being connected impact more than the households that remain offline; it has a rippling effect throughout the country, particularly as it relates to our economic future.

Yet in an era when so many aspects of our lives are dependent on a high-speed Internet connection, a disproportionate number of Black, Latinx, Indigenous, low-income, and rural communities remain offline. Previous efforts at outreach and centering these communities have been lacking, and policies that have not focused on equity when addressing the digital divide have excluded marginalized communities from the benefits of broadband.

From Wired
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