- The Oxford Handbook of Internet Studies
- List of Figures
- List of Tables
- List of Abbreviations
- Notes on the Contributors
- Internet Studies: The Foundations of a Transformative Field
- The Prehistory of the Internet and its Traces in the Present: Implications for Defining the Field
- Web Science
- Society on the Web
- The Internet as Infrastructure
- Network Societies and Internet Studies: Rethinking Time, Space, and Class
- Digital Inequality
- Sociality Through Social Network Sites
- The Study of Online Relationships and Dating
- Games, Online and off
- Cross-National Comparative Perspectives from the World Internet Project
- New Businesses and New Business Models
- Trust in Commercial and Personal Transactions in the Digital Age
- Government and the Internet: Evolving Technologies, Enduring Research Themes
- Digital Transformations of Scholarship and Knowledge
- Studies of the Internet in Learning and Education: Broadening the Disciplinary Landscape of Research
- Theoretical Perspectives in the Study of Communication and the Internet
- Tradition and Transformation in Online News Production and Consumption
- The Internet in Campaigns and Elections
- The Internet and Democracy
- Analyzing Freedom of Expression Online: Theoretical, Empirical, and Normative Contributions
- Cultural, Legal, Technical, and Economic Perspectives on Copyright Online: The Case of the Music Industry
- Privacy and Surveillance: The Multidisciplinary Literature on the Capture, Use, and Disclosure of Personal Information in Cyberspace
- Digital Infrastructures, Economies, and Public Policies: Contending Rationales and Outcome Assessment Strategies
- The Internet and Development: A Critical Perspective
- The Emerging Field of Internet Governance
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter investigates the research on inequalities in society, and also considers the digital inequality beyond overly simplistic conceptions of access to technologies. Additionally, it describes how people's background characteristics relate to their web-use skills and what they do online. The social implications of differentiated Internet uses are covered. The theoretical perspectives presented point out various forms of inequality associated with information and communications technology (ICT) uses, and explore both the causes and consequences of digital inequalities from various research fields and traditions. It is noted that skills are not randomly distributed across the population, and that the social context of use refers to how people integrate digital media into their lives. Different types of online activities may have divergent implications for varying aspects of social capital. There are three possible outcomes of widespread digital media uses when it comes to social inequality.
Eszter Hargittaiis an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Studies, Northwestern University, Illinois, USA.
Yuli Patrick Hsieh is a Doctoral Candidate in the Media, Technology & Society Program, Department of Communication Studies, Northwestern University, Illinois, USA.
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