The Digital Divide Network

IT professionals team up to create Internet-based clearinghouse

government and civic leaders. During his keynote address at the annual conference of the Rev. Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow/PUSH Coalition’s Wall Street Project in January, President Clinton noted that many high-quality digital divide-related programs and projects have a hard time linking with the people that they need to reach. “A lot of the people you’re trying to reach don’t have a computer . . . can’t afford the hookup,” he said.

With the Digital Divide Network, you can participate in discussion groups via the site’s Digital Divide automated mailing list. Says Carvin, “Once you subscribe to this list, all messages sent to its e-mail address are forwarded to all subscribers, thus creating an interactive [forum].”

To subscribe, send e-mail to digitaldivide-request@list.benton.org and in the body of the message, write “subscribe digitaldivide youremailaddress.” Of course, be sure to replace the word “youremailaddress” with your actual e-mail address. Any comments or suggestions for the Digital Divide Network should be e-mailed to ddivide@benton.org.
< BR> Digital Divide corporate initiatives
A number of corporate organizations have committed funds and resources, including training materials, equipment and mentors to help urban youth compete in the digital age. The following is a sampling of such corporate programs:

  • AT&T. In addition to supporting community technology centers, the telecommunications giant is fostering several programs aimed at providing computer training and access. The AT&T Learning Network offers free online resources to help families, schools and communities use technology effectively to enhance teaching and learning. AT&T’s Academy of Information Technology is a high school-based curriculum designed to prepare students for an information technology workplace.
  • AOL and Gateway. The online service provider and PC manufacturer are among more than a dozen nonprofit organizations, major corporations and federal agencies that have banned together to launch PowerUp. The multimillion dollar project aims to help America’s underserved youth acquire technical skills, experiences and resources. AOL has pledged 100,000 accounts for free Internet access. Gateway and the Waitt Family Foundation will provide 50,000 computers.
  • SBC Communications. Last November, SBC awarded a $1 million grant to the National Urban League to support its technology programs. The funds will create and maintain community technology centers, which were heralded in the “Falling Through the Net” report as key access points for low-income communities.
  • Microsoft. The billion-dollar software maker has teamed up with Boys & Girls Clubs of America to build technology centers at 15 locations nationwide and to develop a model for other clubs. In the program’s first year, Microsoft donated $1.1 million in cash and $540,000 in software.
  • Intel. The leading chipmaker’s Computer Clubhouse Network seeks to create safe, after-school environments for urban youth to work with technology mentors. The goal is to open 100 Intel Computer Clubhouses by 2005. Intel has also partnered with educators to provide a training curriculum developed by teachers for teachers.
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