3 people, 200 square miles, Managing homelessness, remote school, and life in a pandemic , and a life in a pandemic
December 7, 2020 - 3:15pm
December 7, 2020 - 4:20pm
Many of the artifacts I have posted here have revolved around the digital divide in a purely academic sense, and while this article touches on that subject, it also goes deeper and explores the social ramifications of the digital divide.
It is psuedo-ethnographic in the way that it focuses on B.J., an 11 year old who lives with is father at and sister at Jane Addams Place, a homeless shelter in North Philadelphia. This homeless shelter's spotty internet connection has caused problems for B.J.
BJ's father, Benjamin, is diasbled and had to move into the shelter after his sister, who he was staying with, moved to Florida. B.J. is the first time I've seen a first hand account of a student with inconsistent internet access, I would honestly love to interview him.
The article also talks about another aspect of the digital divide I had not considered before, the social aspect. B.J. cannot have guests over, and he cannot go to his friends' houses. The public space where internet is available must be rationed, so he is only able to use it for class time, meaning he misses out on social uses of remote communication.
Getting a firsthand account of someone living internet insecure was fascinating. It talks about challaneges I hadn't even considered. It was the first time I saw an instance of someone trying to get the internet essentials package. This part of the article discusses that, "
Like other low-income Philadelphia families, the Todds are entitled through a partnership with the city, the School District, and internet providers to either a wired internet connection or a mobile hot spot that would make things easier, but Todd has so far been unable to secure a hot spot. He tried multiple times to pick one up, he said, but none was available, and he stopped trying. When he leaves the shelter for a medical appointment or any other reason, the children must go with him, so they miss school; they can’t be left alone at the shelter." (Garaham, 2020).
Anonymous, 7 December 2020, "3 people, 200 square miles, Managing homelessness, remote school, and life in a pandemic , and a life in a pandemic", contributed by , The Energy Rights Project, Platform for Experimental Collaborative Ethnography, last modified 27 February 2021, accessed 29 November 2023. https://energyrights.info/content/3-people-200-square-miles-managing-homelessness-remote-school-and-life-pandemic-and-life