Originally published: March 22, 2009
Last updated: March 22, 2009 - 8:26pm
The technology available in today's public libraries can help reduce the broadband access gap for families, while providing a wide range of information resources and services. Overall, the percentage of public libraries that provide free broadband Internet to patrons increased from 49% in 2002 to 65% in 2007, the most recent year available. In 2007, the percentage of libraries providing broadband Internet access in urban, suburban and rural areas was 91, 70 and 52%, respectively. Investments in library technology are helping communities that need it most. In 2007, 88% of public libraries in high poverty areas provided access to broadband Internet and 73% of public libraries reported their facilities as being the only source of free Internet access in their community.