Please enter a valid search term.

Moving the Needle: Closing the Internet Access Gap Among African Americans

Figure 1 300x216 Figure 1

(February 19, 2019) - Our credo affirms that everyone belongs in a Connected Nation. As we commemorate Black History Month, we can see where strides have been made in this effort, even as more improvements are needed.

At a recent forum held by the Multicultural Media Caucus and Nielsen, participants noted that “African Americans are entering a technology-driven marketplace with an unprecedented sense of community, economic consciousness, and digital-native know-how.”[1] Data from the United States Census Bureau show this to be true: Although African Americans are still less likely to subscribe to home internet service, the gap has been closing over the past several years (Figure 1).

Figure 2 300x200 Figure 2

As of 2017 (the most recent data available from the Census Bureau), nearly 4.3 million African-American households (10.8%, or nearly one out of nine) had no home internet service. In comparison, the United States average is just 7.7% of households without home internet. This gap matters because so many necessities like job opportunities, local news, and educational tools are now found primarily online.

The good news is that this gap has been shrinking. Although African-American households still lag behind the U.S. average in terms of internet subscriptions, the latest information from the United States Census Bureau shows that gap closing between 2015 and 2017 (Figure2).

We at Connected Nation will continue to work at closing that gap to ensure everyone has the ability to benefit from all that broadband offers.


Related Links:
Meet the Man Who is Expanding Digital Inclusion to Communities of Color

Why Being Left Out is Not an Option in the Digital Age

African American History Makers in Technology

How Technology Can Help Uplift Minorities in Higher Education

 A Conversation with the Founder of Black Girls Code 

Mcgovern Chris 01 683x1024 Headroom 200x300

About the Author: Chris McGovern is the Director of Research Development for Connected Nation. Chris works with Connected Nation staff and external stakeholders to develop research deliverables and provide critical analysis. He uses qualitative and quantitative techniques to interpret data, formulate reports, and make substantiated recommendations based on research findings.