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Digital Opportunities: An Introduction

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Everybody can do something in this battle against the digital divide because people aren’t automatically excluded and walls aren’t automatically built.

The Digital Divide, the technological gap between rich areas and poor areas of the world, excludes every day millions of people from the global benefits that life can offer. There are parts of the world where each day people communicate through mobile phones, e-mails, have an always faster access to information, knowledge, images and sounds. For these people a window on earth is always wide open and this “privilege” is given for granted as it’s conquered since birth. In other parts of the globe live men and women that populate a black and white universe where at times even talking becomes an impossibile action, where they don’t see, listen, know and can’t discover the planet. Even for these people destiny seems to be so dramatically given for granted. This division before being a technological gap between the north and the south of the world is a barrier between human beings and so often builds walls that can’t be climbed, which kill all hopes of dialogue and development.

Something must be done to bring down this wall.

The seed of change must start growing from the base of each society, this is the only possible way to conceive long term victories and allow the children that live today, and will be born tomorrow, in third world countries, to become adults that pocess the necessary instruments to have an active role in the global society.

If it’s true that globalisation has increased the gap between the haves and the have nots it’s also true that it has allowed us to have a consciousness of this problem and the paradox is that it has provided us with a potential solution. We need to implement this potentiality.

We need to promote the development of grass root projects because these place themselves on the base of a society shaking it’s rotten roots and building the necessary pillars of future growth. We need to inform people of the plague that is today an open wound. We need to find synergies between all those concerned in bridging the digital divide because together voices can be heard and solutions and ideas become concrete actions. The linkage between societies, cultures, markets, ideals and people, in one word globalisation, gives us the opportunity to do this.

This is the aim of this dossier, that of allowing people to know, that of throwing drops of concern into the consciousness of each individual. That of providing a working place for all those organizations that shall participate in Decembers workshop on the digital divide allowing these groups to collaborate and form alliances. Everybody can (and must!) contribute in building the dossier through articles, reports, interviews or any other idea. It is also an invitation to all other organizations and individuals to join this struggle for a better society. It’s final aim is to give a contribution in stimulating the growth of a global movement on the digital divide, providing this movement with a platform on which together all participants can work even after the december event.

Everybody can do something in this battle against the digital divide because people aren’t automatically excluded and walls aren’t automatically built. The gap was a potential danger that has become a matter of fact and today potentialy something can change and we all have the opportunity to contribute in transforming this potentiality into reality.