It is time to stop focusing so intensively on the
technology divide, for the real differences we should seek to narrow are
America’s core social divides: the grave disparities in economic
opportunity, education, health, safety, housing, employment...
Efforts to help low-income communities gain
the benefits of technology must be directed toward achieving specific
outcomes — in other words, tangible improvements in people’s standards
No matter how impressive the technology or how
well-intended the motives, technology initiatives imposed on a community
by outsiders are often ineffective...
The hard truth is that until at least a basic
level of community capacity is in place, large-scale technology
initiatives have little hope of success...
Once a community has achieved at least a basic level of capacity,
technology can be a powerful tool for the next stage of capacity-building
Investments in technology must go far beyond funding for hardware,
software, and wires...
The truth is that most people, especially those in low-income communities,
see little reason to embrace technology...
Although public officials have been quick to grasp the importance of
helping low-income communities participate in the digital revolution,
public policies have lagged behind public pronouncements...
To address a social challenge of this size, the sheer magnitude of
available capital must increase exponentially, and that capital must be
Anything less than a massive mobilization of resources, financing, talent,
and innovation is destined to produce only incremental and isolated