According to the conventional measure, the digital divide assigns the same weight to each country regardless of its population size. In this note, by contrast, the divide is conceptualized at the level of individuals as the absolute number of internet users and mobile phone subscribers in developed as against developing countries. On this basis I find that the conventional gap in information technology (IT) use between these countries either shrinks dramatically or is actually reversed. The role of China in these new results is heavily emphasized. The goal of policy should be to provide access to the vast number of individuals who still have no access to IT, even when the digital divide is closed.
|Publication status||Published - 2009|