New Media Use in Brazil: Digital Inclusion or Digital Divide?

Sueila Pedrozo 1 *

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Abstract

The emergence of information and communication technologies (ICTs) and, more recently, social network sites and online games brought profound changes to societies and people, particularly to young people. The new media changed communication, interaction, and leisure and provided a locus for identity development and group participation. Although the full impact of digital media on people and society is not yet known, there are already positive as well as negative concerns but new socialities and peer cultures may emerge. In Brazil, mobile phones became the main technology of connectivity, were rapidly adopted and reached all social classes as an example of democratic inclusion; however, the internet still lags behind as a result of socioeconomic, educational, and demographic inequalities that still prevail, cause the digital exclusion and place the Brazilian population at an unfavorable position. More public policies can convert the internet into a tool of citizenship so that the low-income people, especially the young, can benefit from it and become participants in the digital age. Future research should address these issues.

Keywords

mobile phone; internet; social network; inequality digital divide; youth

License

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp. 144-163

Published Online: 24 Jan 2013

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