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Half of Wales could be digitally excluded
Thursday 15 February 2007 14:09:21 by Andrew Ferguson

The Welsh Consumer Council, has published a press release which discusses the issues that arise for communities where a digital divide is allowed to grow.

The factors that keep people from using the internet are not always obvious to regular Internet users but issues such as the cost of access, lack of an idea of where to start and even confusion about how a computer works can all be barriers.

The Welsh Consumer Council estimates that 53% of adults in Wales do not access the internet. 35% of these people simply don't want to whilst another 19% don't feel the need for it. Many respondents to the survey would choose to give it a go if given correct information and support.

With the press coverage on issues like illegal material online and security scares, it is understandable for users to be worried and thus explain why they would like support to help them go online. Using the internet does not necessarily mean needing to buy a computer and an Internet connection at home with access available in local libraries, council offices and village halls where users can gain confidence on how to use the Internet.

This issue does not just affect Wales, but the whole UK, and how central government, local councils and other bodies address the problems is critical as simply throwing money at it by buying or donating a computer to someone is not always going to help. It is necessary to provide the locxal support to help with problems that arise.

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