Sunday, May 3, 2009

Understanding digital inequality: Comparing continued use behavioral models of the socio-economically advantaged and disadvantaged

Your assignment, in preparation for our final, is to thoroughly discuss the remaining articles via our blog. Our collaboration will make the entire review a lot more productive for everyone.

Keep the following tasks in mind as you're blogging the article:

1.)Provide a summary
2.)Define key terms
3.)Analyze potentially weak points in the author’s argument
4.)Compare your article to our past readings
5.)Read the other groups’ blog posts and comparing it to your article
6.)Relate your article to the larger themes from the class

Feel free to comment on any other group's blog discussions as well. You should be reading them anyway, and providing extra commentary will help us all.

In addition, we'll be distributing a study guide later. Please use this same blog space to discuss that guide.


Brian K. said...
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Brian K. said...

1. Summary:

This article uses the theory of planned behavior (TPB) to explore how socioeconomic status (income and education) influences user acceptance of the internet, and, in particular, investigates a government sponsored project in LaGrange city that provided free internet service via cable TV.

The TPB emphasizes the role attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control have on influencing behavioral intentions. The authors broke down “attitudes” into two categories: individuals’ attitudes regarding the expected usefulness of a technology (“utilitarian outcomes”), and whether individuals expect the technology to be enjoyable (“hedonistic outcomes”). “Subjective norms” refers to other’s expectations, held by either close social ties or by the government. Perceived behavioral control, or the control a person feels he or she has over a behavior, was broken down into “self efficacy,” “perceived ease of use,” and “availability.”(See our response to question 2, and also the diagram on pg.101)

The authors predicted the relative significance of each of these factors for both the socioeconomically advantaged and disadvantaged, and then tested their predictions by surveying the participants of the LaGrange city initiative. Their findings show that “perceived behavioral control “ and “hedonistic outcomes” have a stronger influence on the socioeconomically disadvantaged than the advantaged. This confirms the importance of boosting the disadvantaged’s confidence in using internet technologies, and also suggests that training services should place an emphasis on the entertainment aspect of usage to originally attract those with lower socioeconomic status.

Mark Latif said...

Key Terms:

Digital Inequality: Inequality in the access and use of information and communication technologies (ICT).

ICT: Information and Communication Technologies

SED: Socio-economically disadvantaged

SEA: Socio-economically advantaged

TPB (theory of planned behavior): Suggested framework used to understand ICT acceptance in homes and individuals who’ve had some usage experience. TPB suggests that attitudes (A), subjective norms (SN) and perceived behavioral control (PBC) will influence an individual’s behavior (B).

Triandis's Argument (1971): The impact of social norms decreases once behavior takes place.

Utilitarian outcomes (UO): The extent to which performing the behavior enhances the effectiveness of personal related activity, or the utility gained from using the technology.

Hedonic outcomes (HO): The pleasure and satisfaction derived from performing the behavior of interest, for our purposes the process of using an ICT.

Self-Efficacy (SE): The belief in one’s capabilities to organize and to execute the course of action required to attain a goal. This is important because SE can affect ICT usage.

Perceived Ease of Use (PEOU): Refers to how easy an individual believes performing a certain task will be, in our situation this refers to the perceived ease of operating different technologies.

Availability: Accessibility of the technology when needed.

Personal Network Exposure (PNE): Represents the proportion of adopters in one's personal network.

Perceived Critical Mass: Represents a related construct, which refers to the degree to which a person believes that most of his or her peers are using a particular innovation.

Continued Use Intention: Refers to the intention to continue using the technology.

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