The digital divide between the nation's males and females over 50 years of age has widened despite the government's efforts to narrow the gap, officials from the Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) said yesterday.
CEPD officials, quoting the results of a survey last year on the individual and household digital divide conducted by the Research, Development and Evaluation Commission, said that the Internet penetration rate among females aged over 50 was roughly 10 percent lower than that of males in the same age group.
The digital divide between females and males aged between 21 and 50 was 2 percent, according to the same survey, the officials said.
Because most females aged over 50 focus their time and energy on the home, the government has decided to take the initiative to push the private sector to sponsor more training courses and workshops for women so that they can learn to surf the Internet, share information and knowledge via Web portals and even craft their own careers on the Internet, the officials said.
They said that 61 digital opportunity centers are now operational nationwide, and they expected another 62 to open this year.
The officials said that age and gender differences are the major factors that determine the digital divide, although other factors, including personal income and education, also played a decisive role in Internet penetration rates.