The Marconi Society Launches Open Call for Submissions to Digital Inclusion Program to Highlight Critical Barriers Caused by Lack of Internet Connectivity

Up to Ten Winners Will Receive Mobile Hotspot & Unlimited Internet for One Year

A young woman with dark curly hair and wearing glasses smiles in front of a laptop computer

Cleveland, OH, September 11, 2020—The Marconi Society today announced an open call for video submissions to Voices of Digital Inclusion, a new program that connects U.S. community members with the essential tools to access connectivity. As part of the organization’s mission to bring the power of connectivity to everyone, this program provides a platform for those most intimately impacted by the digital divide to share their experiences.

Voices of Digital Inclusion invites members of the community to submit a video explaining what Internet connectivity means to them. The program aims to include a wide variety of voices from different demographic groups and locations. This inaugural program, made possible through a partnership with Mobile Beacon, will provide 10 mobile hotspots to the selected winners, who will receive unlimited Internet access for one year. To read the submission guidelines and submit a 2–3 minute video, see the program website. The deadline for submissions is October 30.

“We’ve known for years that access to dependable, affordable, and high-speed Internet significantly impacts health, economic, educational, and interpersonal outcomes,” says Samantha Schartman-Cycyk, Executive Director of the Marconi Society. “Lack of access also further exacerbates existing inequalities. We are committed to championing digital inclusion through all that we do and are eager to hear our community members share their unique experiences with lack of access.”

According to the latest American Community Survey (ACS), 39% of U.S. households making under $35,000/year do not have access to the Internet. Additionally, 14.4 million U.S. households have no computer or Internet-accessing device in the home.

With the advent of COVID-19, the division between those who are connected and those who aren’t has never been felt more keenly, as school, work, commerce, and culture shifted to online formats across the world. While the digital divide has plagued both developed and emerging countries for years, the pandemic underscored these barriers and heightened their impact in new ways.

The video series will launch on October 5, 2020, during Digital Inclusion Week, a National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA) event that raises awareness about digital inclusion and connects community stakeholders with essential services and tools. Two videos will premiere each day throughout the week, providing ten different perspectives on the opportunities of connectivity.

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About the Marconi Society

The Marconi Society envisions a world in which all people can create opportunity through the benefits of connectivity.  The foundation celebrates, inspires and connects individuals building tomorrow’s technologies in service of a digitally inclusive world. Learn more at marconisociety.org

About Mobile Beacon

Founded in 2010, Mobile Beacon provides high-speed, low-cost, mobile Internet access to the anchors of communities: nonprofits, schools, libraries, and healthcare organizations that provide vital services to millions of Americans every day. Through this broadband service, organizations have an essential tool to fulfill their missions and maximize their philanthropic impact, which allows organizations to access more information, reach more people, and help more in their communities. Learn more at mobilebeacon.org

Contact:

Taia Pandolfi
Marketing and Communications Manager
taia@marconisociety.org