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Technology adoption across the digital divide The case of Berkeley Freshmen. Main Arguments.
Using the case of the “technological careers” (DiMaggio and Celeste, 2004) of Berkeley Freshmen, I argue that the binary nature of technology adoption is inadequate to understand or articulate the digital divide.
“ When exclusive emphasis is placed on owning or having access by using these dichotomous have/have-not comparisons, the assumption is that either all haves will incorporate the technology into their everyday lives in the same manner and to the same degree or that the difference in the quality of Internet connection among the haves is unimportant. In other words, these measures introduce an element of technological determinism that ignores the social context in which the technology is incorporated.”
(Jung et al, 2001)
Model of Adoption of Technology in Households (MATH) incorporated: attitudinal belief structure, normative belief structure and social control structure (Shih and Vankatesh, 2003) (Still predicts a binary adoption)
Internet Connectedness Index (ICI) looks at goals, and activities related to the Internet and the centrality of the Internet to individuals (Jung et al., 2001)
Internet use as a continuum to better understand non-internet users (the truly unconnected, net evaders, net dropouts and intermittent users) (Lenhart and Horrigan, 2003)
The second-level digital divide measures internet skills, particularly looking at search skills (Hargattai, 2003)
I believe - in our elementary school we had computers, and we started - they introduced you to a computer. At first it was like painting, you know. Making art on the computers... then writing little short letters.
Joseph: I had to install you know the Internet service myself because my parents don’t know anything about computers. So basically I had to set up everything myself and I remember I got it like senior year too. I needed it for school.
Moderator: Yeah. That’s cool. How did you first get your parents to get it for you?
Joseph: Oh it was hard. They didn’t know what it was. I was like “I need it for school. That’s all you need to worry about. Just pay for it.”
Yeah, my mom has never used the computer. like we’ve called her over, and we’re like, “Look at this screen. They emailed us these pictures.” Or “Here’s the song you like. I found it online.” But she’s never actually like sat there, or turned it on, or anything.... ...Like whenever she would wanna pay bills online - when she heard you could do that, and she would have to go driving off somewhere to do it or mail it, she’s like, “Figure out how to do it. here’s my credit card.”