Keeping Promises: Municipal communities struggle to fulfill promises to narrow the digital divide with Municipal Community Wireless Networks
AbstractSome public elites assert that the digital divide is a serious social problem and that governments must intervene by affording wireless solutions to improve this social ill. Few studies, however, examine the relationship between the claims-making activities around such interventions, specifically in reference to closing the digital divide, and the perceptions of the actual impact of those initiatives on this divide. We bring together two data sets. The first dataset is from a previous study examining the public rhetoric surrounding these initiatives vis-à-vis the digital divide. The latter is part of a much larger study on the network’s impact on the divide. We conclude that these networks are necessary but insufficient in bridging the gap.
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