Wednesday, August 17, 2011

10 Reasons the FCC Thinks Broadband can Address Rural Issues

Rural communities have always lagged behind urban areas in many regards. Simply having to drive further to access opportunities, and having less choice available in those opportunities, have created the disparity. The FCC is encouraging expansion of broadband internet into rural areas with the belief that the access to this technology can keep rural areas from falling further behind.
  1. Parent/school communication – Anything that improves the communication between parents and their kids’ educators will likely improve the educational results of those children. Broadband internet is already doing that in many school districts, and rural schools should not miss out on that benefit. The ability to view your child’s grades and homework assignments empowers parents to direct their children towards success.
  2. Business growth – Rural businesses can’t compete with their urban competitors if they don’t have access to the same technology. An online presence is expected of businesses, without broadband internet access, that presence is more difficult to achieve and manage.
  3. Business development – New businesses will be hesitant to locate in areas where they don’t have access to broadband internet. Broadband is essential to economic development.
  4. Healthcare access – Healthcare has increased its use of the internet for communicating with patients and sharing information with other facilities. In addition, users of broadband internet tend to utilize the internet for basic health questions before making a doctor appointment; a welcome relief to the over-burdened healthcare system.
  5. Technological Literacy – Without access to broadband technology, rural populations will remain ‘illiterate’ in the area of technology. This creates a handicapped segment of the workforce that will require additional training to perform customary tasks by many employees.
  6. K-12 Resources – Students and teachers can benefit from high-speed access to the internet. Students can do research on the internet, just as students do in urban schools. Teachers would have access to many more resources for developing creative lesson plans for their students.
  7. College Prep resources – High school students are handicapped in their preparation and search for colleges if they do not have access to broadband internet. Students should not be penalized in the education process due to living in a rural area.
  8. Employment opportunities – Broadband internet provides citizens with online employment opportunities that they could not access or perform through dialup internet services. It also allows them to search for employment in a wider range of areas.
  9. Broader Cultural Exposure – The internet is a global community. High-speed access to the internet increases rural residents to exposure to a broader range of cultural experiences, within their own country and abroad.
  10. Knowledge equals empowerment – The internet is a wealth of information. Having access to the same information as the rest of the country empowers rural residents to accomplish much more than they could do without this valuable resource.

Anyone who uses broadband on a regular basis should recognize how important it is for every community and family to have the option of broadband internet available to them in this fast-moving age of technology.
Taken From Broadband Service Providers

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