How the US’ massive failure to close digital divide got exposed by coronavirus

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Three out of every four Americans who lack broadband access have the infrastructure in their neighborhood but haven’t connected to it. Most just don’t have the money. Unlike in other wealthy nations, the federal government has imposed no cost controls to make broadband more affordable. The result: massive inequality in one of the modern world’s most basic utilities. “The digital divide in America is largely urban,” said Gigi Sohn, a lawyer and former Federal Communications Commission staffer under Obama. “It’s largely low-income and it’s largely minority communities. Even if you account for income, people of color are disproportionately impacted negatively. They’re on the wrong side of the digital divide.” Meanwhile, President Donald Trump has handed corporations even greater control over the market while preparing to hand them billions more in public money without clear data on where broadband internet is needed and without guarantees that the infrastructure will actually be built. 


How the US’ massive failure to close digital divide got exposed by coronavirus