Remember when it was about the haves and the have nots, referring to who had an internet connection? Later, when we were close to full market online penetration, the divide was about performance, referring to the haves who had broadband and the have nots who were still in dial-up land. Much later, so just a few years ago, there was a lot of speculation around whether the internet would go the route of television and offer a tiered pricing model that would enhance the user experience for the haves who could afford it.
Today the web presents another digital divide, the effects of which are potentially more insidious than any other divide preceding it, largely because its implications are not yet fully understood. The new divide is between the haves who use technology primarily to serve their personal interests and the have nots who need it primarily to serve their geographic interests. We’ll have a lot more to say about these geographic interests soon.