Digital Divide: Poor People Staying Jobless Without Internet Access
1 year ago
All of jobs are online now, walk-in applications are dying
If you're reading this article, odds are you're on your fancy laptop sitting on your couch or maybe at a nice coffee shop with at least 5 other tabs open for you check your email, listen to music, tweet, Facebook or live out your part-time pornographer ambitions on Tumblr.
While your doing that though, a good portion of the "real world" is out hunting for an open computer with web access just so they can apply for a job.
According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, an estimated 100 million people in America do not have the internet in their homes. Some of them live in areas without broadband access, others are just too broke to afford a computer, let alone internet access.
Need a real example? As of 2008, less than 40% of people living in the Bronx had broadband access. So yes, most of the people living in the birthplace of Hip-Hop can't even keep up with the fast-paced culture anymore.
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Huffington Post reports that the poor will probably stay poor, not because they can't find a job, but because they are unable to apply.
"The cost of being offline is greater now than it was 10 years ago," John Horrigan, Vice President of policy research at TechNet, told HuffPo. "So many important transactions take place online. If you don’t have access to high-speed Internet, you're missing out on a lot."
Just how much? 80% of Fortune 500 companies only accept job applications online. Meaning that you can't even walk into the new WalMart they just built down the street and fill out an application. You have to apply via web.
If this sounds like you, you do have options. You can always visit a local library and use their computers. We just hope that the rest of the neighborhood didn't beat you there.