Coronavirus

Pandemic exposes ‘digital inequality’ in Brazilian internet access

While Brazil is an increasingly online society, lower-income families are being left behind in terms of access, quality, and stability of internet connections

Pandemic exposes 'digital inequality' in Brazilian internet access
Image: Gearstd/Shutterstock

Back in 2000, less than 3 percent of Brazilians had access to the internet. Nineteen years later, this has risen to 74 percent, according to data from the Regional Center for Information Society Studies (Cetic). That puts Brazil far ahead of the developing world (47 percent), as well as the global average (53.6 percent). However, access to the internet is by no means democratic — with coverage and quality varying greatly from area to area.

But with many Brazilians forced into confinement — and remote work — by the Covid-19 pandemic, a new form of ‘digital inequality’ became apparent.

“In...

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