Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Silver Surfers: Inclusion Or Excursion In A Digital World?

Date:
October 16, 2008
Source:
University of Hertfordshire
Summary:
Researchers in the UK have found that a digital divide still exists and that more silver surfers (over 50s) need to obtain and use the Internet in their daily lives.

Researchers at the University of Hertfordshire have found that a digital divide still exists and that more silver surfers (over 50s) need to obtain and use the Internet in their daily lives.

In the wake of a Government announcement last month that plans to tackle the digital divide among young families by providing parents on low income with equipment and Internet access, Dr Jyoti Choudrie and Dr Susan Grey from the University’s Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities Research Institute have revealed research findings about the older generation.

Governments across the globe are striving to provide online products and services to all user groups. However certain socially-disadvantaged groups such as the disabled, older people and people from poorer backgrounds are not using online products and services, leading to a digital divide.

This research funded by the University of Hertfordshire, Microsoft, Citizens Online and the Association of Information Systems was carried out using a global survey alongside data obtained from Citizens Online. It reveals that although broadband is being implemented in the home, silver surfers are not using it; with people over the age of seventy-four not using the internet at all. The research also shows that although silver surfers stated they had broadband at home, they were in a household shared with others and it was actually others within the home using the technology and not the silver surfer.

Findings also show there is a certain amount of digital inclusion in the over fifties, in the case of those who are educated and have a middle to high income level. The charity Age Concern highlighted recently that pensioners are spending time online but that they are nevertheless worried as many are still excluded.

The research reveals that work, household activities including online shopping and banking and communicating with family and friends are important factors to entice silver surfers to get online but that entertainment, including downloading music and film is a low priority. The findings also reveal that technical factors including speed and an individual’s level of technical competence also affect a silver surfer’s decision to get online.

Dr Choudrie said: “Access to the internet is no longer seen as a luxury. Governments are striving hard to provide all citizens with online access, which is succeeding but to a limited extent. This research helps policy makers understand the success of initiatives at grassroots level.”

The research also explored whether local level programmes are succeeding at getting older people online. Recommendations of how to sustain programmes of training include; ensuring there are adequate labour resources in the form of volunteers willing to spare time to teach and educate the older people; a willingness to learn in the case of the users themselves; support of organisations such as Microsoft in the form of equipment-hardware and software and sustained and targeted funding.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Hertfordshire. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Hertfordshire. "Silver Surfers: Inclusion Or Excursion In A Digital World?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081016084057.htm>.
University of Hertfordshire. (2008, October 16). Silver Surfers: Inclusion Or Excursion In A Digital World?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081016084057.htm
University of Hertfordshire. "Silver Surfers: Inclusion Or Excursion In A Digital World?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081016084057.htm (accessed August 21, 2014).

Share This




More Computers & Math News

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ballmer Leaves Microsoft's Board, Has Advice For Nadella

Ballmer Leaves Microsoft's Board, Has Advice For Nadella

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) In a letter to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Ballmer said he's leaving the board of directors and offered tips on how the company can be successful. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
What Google Can Gain From Special Accounts For Children

What Google Can Gain From Special Accounts For Children

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) Google will reportedly offer official accounts for children younger than 13 years old. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakingviews: Ebola's Economic Impact Could Eclipse SARS

Breakingviews: Ebola's Economic Impact Could Eclipse SARS

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 18, 2014) The virus ravaging Africa has yet to spread elsewhere. Yet Asia’s SARS crisis in 2003 showed how changes to behaviour can hurt the economy more than the actual disease, says Breakingviews' Una Galani. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Twitter Users Up In Arms After 'Favorites' Show Up In Feeds

Twitter Users Up In Arms After 'Favorites' Show Up In Feeds

Newsy (Aug. 17, 2014) Twitter is testing a feature on some users that shows favorited tweets from people they follow in their own timeline, the same way a retweet appears. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins