Engagement and the Digital Divide

We are trying to be savvy regarding social media approaches to connecting people. It has power and potential to cross boundaries in ways that other media does not and at a volume and speed unlike anything before. We want to push to the front of the line regarding the possible connection between innovation and civic engagement.

Still, I have reservations that I hope will guide us as well. "Community" emerges from relationships, real engagement between people, families, neighbors, groups of people and, when needed organizations/institutions. "Community" is in quotes and I used the verb "emerges" for a reason. I believe community is an aspiration that we, you and I, are wanting. When there is "community" the web of relationships is potent, so as to respond when there is suffering and to celebrate thriving. When the constantly shifting web of many relatively simple relationships is sufficient, the pattern, called "community," "emerges," it becomes evident.

As we move forward with the idea of social media and connections coming through cyber-space, let’s pay attention to the still present "digital divide. It separates people who have constant access to the web from those who do not. It perpetuates poverty and is a tangible barrier to the success of children, the securing of jobs and the participation in civic life.

Knowing the challenge posed by the digital divide means that how we (SCOPE) go about using social media to engage people may be a little different.  It may change frequently to be responsive and adaptive.  We aspire for it to be co-created with you.  Let's check in from time to time to see what we are learning.