Library Advocates

ALA Washington Office

The American Library Association's Washington Office tumblr. We post about federal policies that affect libraries, including copyright, privacy and access. We also post about ebooks and, admittedly, the occasional library fluff.

Library Advocates

Posts tagged digital divide

Mar 6

Nov 25

Nov 20

Many individuals lack the training to make use of Internet tools. Others don’t own the necessary computer hardware, and some just don’t think the Internet is relevant to their lives.

Libraries can be the critical link to helping people overcome these challenges. They provide free high-speed Internet access, a computer to anyone who wishes to use one and hands-on assistance to teach people how they can benefit from new digital tools.

Fund libraries to close Chicago’s digital divide

Nov 15
“In 2009, 77 million people, or roughly 34 percent of the entire U.S. population, used a public library computer or wireless network to access the Internet. Now libraries are facing an increasing number of patrons who need assistance with enrolling in a health insurance plan under the Affordable Care Act.”

Carolyn A. Anthony, Public libraries taxed by demands of Affordable Care Act

What has the experience at your library been since the ACA website went live?


Oct 23
Is your library meeting the digital needs of your community?
The easiest way to answer this burning question is to take the Digital Inclusion Survey, which will generate unique data to illustrate the role your library plays in digital literacy, economic and workforce development, health and wellness, civic engagement, e-government, and public access to the internet. Participating libraries will be able to see their individual library data within a community context with an interactive mapping feature.
You will be able to view the breakout for your library not only for your full service area, but by neighborhood. The map includes a drawing tool that allowing for customized area selection and analysis. Combining the new survey data with the community data of the interactive map can help you identify where your library’s services and resources are meeting community needs and where there might be room for improvement or a need for new partners to extend the library’s reach. You have until November 15, 2013, to complete the survey (digitalinclusion.umd.edu/).

Is your library meeting the digital needs of your community?

The easiest way to answer this burning question is to take the Digital Inclusion Survey, which will generate unique data to illustrate the role your library plays in digital literacy, economic and workforce development, health and wellness, civic engagement, e-government, and public access to the internet. Participating libraries will be able to see their individual library data within a community context with an interactive mapping feature.

You will be able to view the breakout for your library not only for your full service area, but by neighborhood. The map includes a drawing tool that allowing for customized area selection and analysis. Combining the new survey data with the community data of the interactive map can help you identify where your library’s services and resources are meeting community needs and where there might be room for improvement or a need for new partners to extend the library’s reach. You have until November 15, 2013, to complete the survey (digitalinclusion.umd.edu/).


Sep 25

Sep 24

Learn how you can increase access and use of information technology in your community.

Visit: oc.lc/digitalinclusion


Aug 19

The Digital Divide Is Still Leaving Americans Behind

[F]olks in urban areas in search of free Internet often wind up at libraries. New York City libraries house over 4,000 publicly available computers and 1,300 laptops available for rent. New York Public Library President and CEO Anthony Marx told Mashable the New York Public Library was the leading free provider of basic computer skills training, with over 7,700 classes in all of its branches. Marx said these classes were intended to increase computer literacy among New Yorkers.

“If you don’t have the basic computer skills, you can’t apply for a job. You can’t be qualified for a job. Let alone emailing your mother and keeping in touch with her,” he said.

But Marx said that over the past five years, the city has reduced the library’s funding by about 18%, and though they haven’t closed branches or reduced staff, it’s nearly impossible to reach every New Yorker in need of a computer or wireless access.

The Digital Divide Is Still Leaving Americans Behind


Jun 27

Bill Moyers interviews Susan Crawford on How Big Cable Increases Our Digital Divide

Susan Crawford, as seen here, will also be at our Saturday morning session at 8:30am on Saturday in McCormick Place Convention Center Room S502.


Mar 1

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