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Netgain Challenge

From Sean McDonald
Mobile phones do something the Internet doesn’t – connect everyone. There are more than 7b mobile connections worldwide – reaching billions of people the Internet (& smart phones) doesn’t, even in the US and Europe. When we choose digital platforms for social and civic engagement, we are also deciding who gets to participate in our society. The cracks between platforms are not just technological, they're social and economic - and by only focusing on the Internet, we're excluding billions from our shared future. Messaging platforms, and particularly SMS, bridge that gap right now, reaching the people that the Internet does not – like minorities, young people, and the poor. This challenge is to prioritize and support digital access over approach – prioritized by the volume of people who use it, not the platform itself. Focus on who is falling through the cracks in adoption. If we're going to build a truly public digital world, we're going to need more than one tool.
civic engagement, public interest technology, mobile
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