As the global information infrastructure evolves, the field of communication has the opportunity to renew itself while addressing the urgent policy need for new ways of thinking and new data to think about. Communication Researchers and Policy-making examines diverse relationships between the communication research and policy communities over more than a century and the issues that arise out of those interactions.
The use of the internet in homes rivals the advent of the telephone, radio, or television in social significance. Daily use of the World Wide Web and e-mail is taken for granted in many families, and the computer-linked internet is becoming an integral part of the physical and audiovisual environment. The internet's features of personalization, interactivity, and information abundance raise profound new issues for parents and children.
The Digital Divide refers to the perceived gap between those who have access to the latest information technologies and those who do not. If we are indeed in an Information Age, then not having access to this information is an economic and social handicap. Some people consider the Digital Divide to be a national crisis, while others consider it an over-hyped non-issue. This book presents data supporting the existence of such a divide in the 1990s along racial, economic, ethnic, and education lines.