A Senior's Moment: Ageing Telecommunications Policy

TitleA Senior's Moment: Ageing Telecommunications Policy
Publication TypeConference Paper
Author(s)Crow, B., and K. Sawchuk
Affiliation (1st Author)York University
Section or WGCommunication Policy and Technology
DateFri 28 June
Slot CodeCPTF4b
Slot Code (Keyword)CPTF4b
Time of Session16:00-17:30
Session TitlePANEL: Making Interventions in Uncertain Times: The Development of a Mandatory Code for Canada’s Wireless Industry
Submission ID6875

As part of an international network of scholars from a range of disciplines, we have been examining how seniors aged 65 and up negotiate networked technologies, and mobile technologies in particular. The research findings from a series of ethnographic studies were mobilized as part of this CRTC consultation, to show how seniors might require special consideration in the development of a Wireless Code for Canada. For instance, through discussion groups, we have found that despite the rhetoric of “active ageing” that pervades policy initiatives, Canadian seniors feel as though their communication needs are not being addressed by wireless companies that charge prohibitively high costs. The issue of costs has been at the heart of seniors’ concerns around new mobile technology, reflecting the trend toward less economic prosperity among Canada’s older population. Add to this trend the overall ageing of the Canadian demographic – the number of seniors is predicted to double from 4.2 million at present to 9.8 million by 2038 – and the significance of accounting for the special needs of seniors as part of a Wireless Code becomes particularly urgent.

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