LIS 694
Discussion Questions for the World Information Society Report, Chapter 1

  1. On page 13 the authors of the report write that:

    "A society in which a significant part of the population feels excluded from the benefits that ICT [Information and Communication Technology] access brings is a society that is fundamentally insecure, at peril of social disintegration."

    Why do you think that would be?
  2. As citizens of a wealthy country why do Americans need to be concerned about the access to ICTs of people in poorer countries? How does this affect us?
  3. At the end of chapter 4 of his book Cortada wrote, regarding the relationship between being an Internet hub and dominating electronic commerce, that "the bad news is that Europeans and East Asians have figured this out and are beginning to lower their costs of access to the Internet." Do you agree that this is bad news for the United States? Would the authors of the World Information Society Report agree? Are there ways in which this is good news for us? In your view, would a better-informed world citizenry be problematic or a boon to America? Explain why you think as you do on this.
  4. In Table 1.1 of the report it is noted that the ICT Opportunity Index includes adult literacy rates as an indicator. Why do you think they included this in an index measuring access to Information Communication Technology?
  5. In Table 1.2 of the report Action Line C.8 refers to "Cultural diversity and identity, linguistic diversity and local content." Why would this be important to a group engaged in measuring access to information technology?

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