Digital Divide

Digital divide by use of an example:

Case study where digital divide was encountered is in

On June 22, 2012 on the website called Crikey was an article about digital divide effecting elderly people and how they trying to bridge the gap on this serious issue. An online article written by Mark Egan called Connecting The Elderly, is a case where digital divide is effecting the elderly people. It was a study conducted by researchers from the University of Melbourne’s Institute for a Society trying to fix an issue about the elderly people not being socially connected.

Next, so to bridge the gap between the elderly people and social media the team built an iPad application which allows participants to create and share their photos and messages with each other, and provided seven elderly people and two of their care takers. Within ten weeks into the study the participants were able to build social connections in order to help bring their social experience to life.

Moving forward, one of the elderly people said, “The study has been very successful with me. I had a very bad time of depression; It has made a lot of difference. Not the actual act of taking pictures, but the act of being able to communicate with others who are doing the same thing.” The participant life was changed after being connected to social media, he felt happy about sharing content with other people and giving feedback and receiving feedback from others.

Finally, they concluded their research and came up with a conclusion. Saying that, “It is important to recognize that while technologies offer particular opportunities to extend older people’s social networks, social isolation cannot be alleviated by technology alone.” Which means that technology is improving each day but it is mostly aimed at the younger generation and not the older people. So to help fix that they tested a few elderly people first to see if they would like the application and see if it made them feel socially connected and it did. Now more companies are making applications aimed at elderly people, so they can still feel connected to the world not just in person, but also on social media or the internet is what they would say.

Personally, I liked the idea about companies making applications that are not just aimed at the youth generation, I think it will bring the world together on social media.



Build-A-Bear Website, Social media and COPPA

On the date of June 24, 2013 an article was posted by Susan Ross (US) on Norton Rose Fulbright website. The Build-A-Bear workshops website is aimed mainly at children under the age of 13, since they are aiming their products at thirteen- year olds they are potentially subject to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Which means that no personal information is released or showed without the parents permission because of the childs age. To summarized, Build-A-Bear claimed that their website had a update that overwritten their age-gate-cookie data, the update aloud children to use the back button on the website to change their ages which violate the children’s privacy federal law. Not only were they violating the federal children’s privacy law also on their website they have links going to Twitter and Pinterest, two websites who are not aimed towards children that are thirteen or under the age of thirteen. This raised an issue under the COPPA, so Build-A-Bear had to restore their age-gating cookie and remove the two links to Twitter and Pinterest from their page. The FTC(Federal Trade Commission) takes children-directed websites very seriously for example, on February 1st, 2013 they fined Path Inc. Eight-Hundred Thousands dollars for violation the Children’s Online Privacy Protection ACT (COPPA).


Bland v. Roberts Case

On March 3rd, 2011 the court case Bland v. Roberts took place in Hampton Virginia dealing with employees of a sheriff. The court case Bland v. Roberts is about four deputies and two civilians employees (Bobby Bland, Daniel Ray Carter Jr., David W. Dixon, Robert E. McCoy, John C. Sandhofer, and Debra H. Woodward) were fired by their boss B.J. Roberts after they liked a Facebook page of an opponent of their boss (Jim Adams) who was running for sheriff for of Hampton,Virginia. Also, putting bumper stickers on their cars and making statements favoring the opponent of their boss Jim Adams. The victims of being fired sued B.J. Roberts individually for wrongful termination feeling that their First Amendment right of speech was being violated. Then a U.S. District court judge in Virginia felt that liking a page on Facebook do not have anything to do with speech so, he ruled that the terminations do not violate the First Amendment. Now the decision is being brought to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, The Sheriff’s Office said that the defendants liking that Facebook page had no relation to them being terminated. The Fourth Circuit found that Roberts was entitled to fire the employees for political reasons involving his campaign running for sheriff.