Digital Divides and Online Media

by   Jukka Ruohonen, et al.

Digital divide has been a common concern during the past two or three decades; traditionally, it refers to a gap between developed and developing countries in the adoption and use of digital technologies. Given the importance of the topic, digital divide has been also extensively studied, although, hitherto, there is no previous research that would have linked the concept to online media. Given this gap in the literature, this paper evaluates the "maturity" of online media in 134 countries between 2007 and 2016. Maturity is defined according to the levels of national online media consumption, diversity of political perspectives presented in national online media, and consensus in reporting major political events in national online media. These aspects are explained by considering explanatory factors related to economy, infrastructure, politics, and administration. According to the empirical results based on a dynamic panel data methodology, all aspects except administration are also associated with the maturity of national online media.



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