Connect with us

Digital Inclusion

Federal Government Has a Role in Funding Broadband Adoption, House Committee Witnesses Say

Adrienne Patton

Published

on

Screenshot of the witnesses at the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Hearing

WASHINGTON, January 30, 2020 –Advocates for digital inclusion on Wednesday encouraged Congress to pass the Digital Equity Act and fund state and local efforts to close the digital divide.

The Digital Equity Act would allocate funding at the state and local level to bolster digital literacy.

At a hearing, National Digital Inclusion Alliance Executive Director Angela Siefer urged Congress to pass the bill. Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-California, introduced the measure with Rep. Ben Lujan, D- New Mexico, and Rep. Yvette Clarke, D-NY, who were present at the hearing.

Representatives and witnesses alike turned their attention from solely the rural digital divide to urban areas where broadband is available, but adoption is low.

Rep. McNerney, D-California, lamented the “untapped” opportunity in households that could have broadband, but do not connect.

According to Siefer, the main barriers are cost and digital illiteracy.

Joshua Edmonds, director of digital inclusion in Detroit, said more than 40 percent of Detroit residents do not have access to broadband, and the lack of connectivity prevents residents from accessing important services, like online banking.

Although Edmonds said the city has made great strides partnering with the private sector, this is not sustainable without government resources.

Jeffrey Sural, director of the Broadband Infrastructure Office in the North Carolina Department of Information Technology, agreed. He said bridging the digital divide in North Carolina is only possible with state funding.

In his written statement, Sural argued that “existing social services can be leveraged to educate and inform about resources that may to be available to encourage adoption.” Sural believes the government plays an “important role by convening stakeholders and educating the public.”

Gigi Sohn, a distinguished fellow at Georgetown Law Institute for Technology Law and Policy, lamented that states can prohibit communities from building local broadband networks. Sohn encouraged Congress to promote local networks.

Adrienne Patton was a Reporter for Broadband Breakfast. She studied English rhetoric and writing at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. She grew up in a household of journalists in South Florida. Her father, the late Robes Patton, was a sports writer for the Sun-Sentinel who covered the Miami Heat, and is for whom the press lounge in the American Airlines Arena is named.

Digital Inclusion

Popularity Of Telework And Telehealth Presents Unique Opportunities For A Post-Pandemic World

A survey released earlier this month illustrates opportunities for remote work and care.

Benjamin Kahn

Published

on

Screenshot of Hernan Galperin via YouTube

WASHINGTON, January 30, 2020 –Advocates for digital inclusion on Wednesday encouraged Congress to pass the Digital Equity Act and fund state and local efforts to close the digital divide.

The Digital Equity Act would allocate funding at the state and local level to bolster digital literacy.

At a hearing, National Digital Inclusion Alliance Executive Director Angela Siefer urged Congress to pass the bill. Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-California, introduced the measure with Rep. Ben Lujan, D- New Mexico, and Rep. Yvette Clarke, D-NY, who were present at the hearing.

Representatives and witnesses alike turned their attention from solely the rural digital divide to urban areas where broadband is available, but adoption is low.

Rep. McNerney, D-California, lamented the “untapped” opportunity in households that could have broadband, but do not connect.

According to Siefer, the main barriers are cost and digital illiteracy.

Joshua Edmonds, director of digital inclusion in Detroit, said more than 40 percent of Detroit residents do not have access to broadband, and the lack of connectivity prevents residents from accessing important services, like online banking.

Although Edmonds said the city has made great strides partnering with the private sector, this is not sustainable without government resources.

Jeffrey Sural, director of the Broadband Infrastructure Office in the North Carolina Department of Information Technology, agreed. He said bridging the digital divide in North Carolina is only possible with state funding.

In his written statement, Sural argued that “existing social services can be leveraged to educate and inform about resources that may to be available to encourage adoption.” Sural believes the government plays an “important role by convening stakeholders and educating the public.”

Gigi Sohn, a distinguished fellow at Georgetown Law Institute for Technology Law and Policy, lamented that states can prohibit communities from building local broadband networks. Sohn encouraged Congress to promote local networks.

Continue Reading

Digital Inclusion

Virt Seeks To Serve As The Hub To Find And Join Virtual Events

Launched last week, virt.com hopes to take advantage of the rise in virtual events by crowdsourcing them in one place.

Tim White

Published

on

Photo of GHS co-founder Victor Zonana, left, from Global Health New Zealand

WASHINGTON, January 30, 2020 –Advocates for digital inclusion on Wednesday encouraged Congress to pass the Digital Equity Act and fund state and local efforts to close the digital divide.

The Digital Equity Act would allocate funding at the state and local level to bolster digital literacy.

At a hearing, National Digital Inclusion Alliance Executive Director Angela Siefer urged Congress to pass the bill. Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-California, introduced the measure with Rep. Ben Lujan, D- New Mexico, and Rep. Yvette Clarke, D-NY, who were present at the hearing.

Representatives and witnesses alike turned their attention from solely the rural digital divide to urban areas where broadband is available, but adoption is low.

Rep. McNerney, D-California, lamented the “untapped” opportunity in households that could have broadband, but do not connect.

According to Siefer, the main barriers are cost and digital illiteracy.

Joshua Edmonds, director of digital inclusion in Detroit, said more than 40 percent of Detroit residents do not have access to broadband, and the lack of connectivity prevents residents from accessing important services, like online banking.

Although Edmonds said the city has made great strides partnering with the private sector, this is not sustainable without government resources.

Jeffrey Sural, director of the Broadband Infrastructure Office in the North Carolina Department of Information Technology, agreed. He said bridging the digital divide in North Carolina is only possible with state funding.

In his written statement, Sural argued that “existing social services can be leveraged to educate and inform about resources that may to be available to encourage adoption.” Sural believes the government plays an “important role by convening stakeholders and educating the public.”

Gigi Sohn, a distinguished fellow at Georgetown Law Institute for Technology Law and Policy, lamented that states can prohibit communities from building local broadband networks. Sohn encouraged Congress to promote local networks.

Continue Reading

Digital Inclusion

Starry and Non-Profit PCs for People Seek Affordable Connectivity, Affordable Devices and Digital Literacy

Benjamin Kahn

Published

on

Photo of Starry Senior Vice President Virginia Adams from Public Knowledge

WASHINGTON, January 30, 2020 –Advocates for digital inclusion on Wednesday encouraged Congress to pass the Digital Equity Act and fund state and local efforts to close the digital divide.

The Digital Equity Act would allocate funding at the state and local level to bolster digital literacy.

At a hearing, National Digital Inclusion Alliance Executive Director Angela Siefer urged Congress to pass the bill. Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-California, introduced the measure with Rep. Ben Lujan, D- New Mexico, and Rep. Yvette Clarke, D-NY, who were present at the hearing.

Representatives and witnesses alike turned their attention from solely the rural digital divide to urban areas where broadband is available, but adoption is low.

Rep. McNerney, D-California, lamented the “untapped” opportunity in households that could have broadband, but do not connect.

According to Siefer, the main barriers are cost and digital illiteracy.

Joshua Edmonds, director of digital inclusion in Detroit, said more than 40 percent of Detroit residents do not have access to broadband, and the lack of connectivity prevents residents from accessing important services, like online banking.

Although Edmonds said the city has made great strides partnering with the private sector, this is not sustainable without government resources.

Jeffrey Sural, director of the Broadband Infrastructure Office in the North Carolina Department of Information Technology, agreed. He said bridging the digital divide in North Carolina is only possible with state funding.

In his written statement, Sural argued that “existing social services can be leveraged to educate and inform about resources that may to be available to encourage adoption.” Sural believes the government plays an “important role by convening stakeholders and educating the public.”

Gigi Sohn, a distinguished fellow at Georgetown Law Institute for Technology Law and Policy, lamented that states can prohibit communities from building local broadband networks. Sohn encouraged Congress to promote local networks.

Continue Reading

Recent

Signup for Broadband Breakfast

Get twice-weekly Breakfast Media news alerts.
* = required field

Trending