The digital divide is defined by role computers play within widening social gaps in our society, as condition of one group having an advantage over another group in regard to computers, technology skills and Internet access.
This is usually thought of as being a divide between white middle class and minority communities; but there is another often overlooked class of nonusers, middle-aged corporate manager. As computer skills play an increasingly important role in building careers, many have not acquired necessary technological skills needed to keep up.
Being computer illiterate in todayís high-tech business world is almost indistinguishable from being functionally illiterate. And itís difficult to believe there are successful people in business world who do not know how to use a computer. Unfortunately, these corporate managers are mistaken in belief that they can avoid computers and remain successful in workplace.
In late 1990ís, I was hired by a successful direct sales catalog company to design their sales catalogs. The Director of Advertising was in his mid 50ís and had, over years, had a successful career. He was in his late 40ís when desktop computers first came into workplace and he had no interest in learning a new technology. He assumed, that because he had never needed computer technology to succeed in past that he didnít need it now.
At first he escaped learning computers by joking about new technology, and later he relied on his employees to write his emails, schedules, spreadsheets etc. Eventually, he became only company executive who didnít have a computer on his desk. In his stubbornness not to learn new technology, he had become a dinosaur.
He resisted and resented learning how to use a computer. At beginning of every year he made a resolution to get a computer and learn all about it; but he never followed through.
When he attempted to modify a computer file himself, he would hold mouse backwards. When he didnít get response he wanted, heíd slam mouse down hard on desk in frustration.