Lev Lazinskiy

Open Source and Digital Divide

| school | writing | foss |

Update 1/13/2024: Unfortunately this file was lost, so the download no longer works.

I wanna share my final with all of you! I wrote this in my ethics in IT class last semester. Would love to see some feedback or comments.

(This is just the Executive Summary, Click on the link to see the whole PDF.)

Executive Summary Information Technology gives people the tools that they need in order to succeed. Technology provides educational systems with tools for learning and more access to information, businesses better communication, and artists a whole new medium with which they can create their art. Western countries have seen these benefits from technology while third world countries have not been so fortunate. Without access to affordable hardware, software, and the Internet, these third world countries will continue to be left behind. This creates the digital divide. If major software corporations took the initiative to help end the digital divide it would be good humanitarian work and also, good for business. Helping less fortunate people catch up to modern technology contributes to the global marketplace, helps them escape from poverty, and add innovation and a piece of their own culture to share with the rest of the world. This problem cannot be solved with a profit motive. People in these countries cannot afford food, let alone a hundred dollar software license. The language barrier is also a big issue. Major corporations are practicing social Darwinism in which only the strong survive and rest fall behind. Open source philosophy is that everyone should have access to computers and the Internet regardless of how much money they make, what language they speak, or what disabilities they have. Open source has turned into a competitive and realistic solution for corporate and personal computer needs. Open source is free, community driven, and has less security issues. The main problem with open source software is the learning curve and compatibility with hardware. It is important to combat the digital divide. Everyone around the world deserves to have access to a computer and the Internet. It is beneficial to business, educations, news, and art. If underprivileged societies were given access to technology then their quality of life would become higher and they would be able to compete fairly in the world marketplace.

Read More…(will download PDF)

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