A Reuters article (via News.com) points out:
An estimated 42 percent of Americans had high-speed Internet access at home in March 2006, according to the Pew Internet & American Life Project. That was up from 30 percent of Americans with high-speed access one year earlier, it said.
Wow, 168 million people do not have Broadband at home. The funny thing is many (technologists, the technorati, and the like) refer to the network as being ubiquitous. Its not, and given the cost issues ($49.00 for Comcast) and the political BS around the last mile and now net neutrality, its likely that many may never get Broadband. 168 million, in that number lurks the digital divide, and we as a country don’t seem to be doing much about it. Anybody want to guess how many children are deprived the benefit of the information super highway. Dial-up doesn’t count in my book either. Sad very Sad.
4 thoughts on “An estimated 168 million Americans lack broadband access at home!”
I’d think that before we worry about how many people don’t have broadband access, we should worry about how many people don’t have homes, food, or health insurance!
I agree 100%. According to U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics:
"In 2000, 31 million people, or 11.3 percent of the population lived at or below the official poverty level"
The official poverty level is really low:
"In 2000, the average poverty threshold for a family of four was $17,603; for a family of nine or more persons, the threshold was $35,060; and for an unrelated individual aged 65 or older, it was $8,259"
There are many issues, my argument is that in addition to access to housing, food, health insurance and education it is critical that all citizens have access to the the Internet. We can not allow our citizenry to be segmented by access. The internet was created using our tax dollars. The network utilized the public right of way (Cables and spectrum). Why should only a portion of our nations citizens be allowed to benefit from a national investment. So in the 168 million there are people that are not working poor, but cannot afford to spend almost $500 a year for broad band access to the Internet. As applications and services require broadband, even the people with dial-up will be excluded from more and more of the network.
Some people do not have broadband because it is not available to them! really!!
I was talking to a customer of a large website (you know which) last week and they mentioned that they are using dial up as broadband or dsl was not there in their area. 🙂
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