Special Reports

The “digital divide” is a term that has been used to characterize a gap between “information haves
and have-nots,” or in other words, between those Americans who use or have access to
telecommunications technologies (e.g., telephones, computers, the Internet) and those who do
not. One important subset of the digital divide debate concerns high-speed Internet access and
advanced telecommunications services, also known as broadband. Broadband is provided by a
series of technologies (e.g., cable, telephone wire, fiber, satellite, wireless) that give users the
ability to send and receive data at volumes and speeds far greater than traditional “dial-up”
Internet access over telephone lines.