author={Grant Blank},
  journal={Information, Communication \& Society},
  pages={590 - 612}
  • Grant Blank
  • Published 16 April 2013
  • Business
  • Information, Communication & Society
Until the Internet arrived, content creation and distribution was always an expensive, difficult process. With the Internet it is dramatically easier, faster, and cheaper. Some argue that this will move creation out of the hands of elites and lead to wider participation in the public sphere and to enhanced democracy. This paper makes three contributions to this debate. First, it uses a national random sample of the British population. This is much broader than most prior work. Second, it… 
In the iCS article, ‘Who Creates Content?’ (April 2013), Blank contends that digital production inequality depends on the type of online content in question. Using 2010 survey data from the UK, he
My paper (Blank 2013) makes two fundamental points about content production and inequality. First, content production can be meaningfully grouped into several discrete types. Using British data from
Persisting Effects of Internet Skills on Online Participation
Millions of people contribute to online content daily, allowing them to share their ideas and influence public conversations. Some have attached much enthusiasm and hope to such activities as they
Dimensions of digital inequality in the sharing economy
ABSTRACT Sharing economy platforms have grown to offer various commercial opportunities to a growing but still limited user base. We conceptualize engagement in the sharing economy as a form of
Social media activities in Finland: A population-level comparison
In the Web 2.0 era, consumers of media are no longer mere recipients of digital content, but rather active commentators and cocreators online. However, the Internet rule predicts that 90% of users
Digital media production and identity: Insights from a psychological perspective
The unprecedented opportunities for production and collaborative working supported by Web 2.0 technology offer immense potential for active knowledge creation. Research to date has mostly explored
Generous Attitudes and Online Participation
Some of the most popular websites depend on user-generated content produced and aggregated by unpaid volunteers. Contributing in such ways constitutes a type of generous behavior, as it costs time
What is the “Digital Divide” and why is it Important?
Abstract This article begins with a consideration of the different meanings that have been given to the digital divide, and to the normative concerns that researchers have brought to its
A Social Milieu Approach to the Online Participation Divides in Germany
Research on digital divides has been helpful in advancing our understanding of the social structuration of Internet access, motivations to go online, digital skills, and Internet (non-)use, including
Online Influence? Social Media Use, Opinion Leadership, and Political Persuasion
Opinion leaders can be influential in persuading their peers about news and politics, yet their potential influence has been questioned in the social media era. This study tests a theoretical model


Weapon of the Strong? Participatory Inequality and the Internet
What is the impact of the possibility of political participation on the Internet on long-standing patterns of participatory inequality in American politics? An August 2008 representative survey of
THE PARTICIPATION DIVIDE: Content creation and sharing in the digital age1
This paper looks at the prevalence of creative activity and sharing in an age when the barriers to disseminating material have been considerably lowered compared with earlier times. The authors use
Next Generation Users: The Internet in Britain
This report focuses on the emergence of “next generation users” in Britain, Internet users who are developing a new pattern of Internet access. We follow the emerging next generation users throughout
The Digital Reproduction of Inequality
By the beginning of the 21 century, information and communication technologies (ICT) had become a staple of many people’s everyday lives. The level of instantaneous connectivity – to others and to an
Second-Level Digital Divide: Differences in People's Online Skills
It is suggested that people search for content in a myriad of ways and there is considerable difference in whether individuals are able to find various types of content on the Web and a large variance in how long it takes to complete online tasks.
Motivations for and barriers to Internet usage: results of a national public opinion survey
It is concluded that the results of the survey indicate that people strongly desire an easier‐to‐use Internet, while nonusers have a decidedly different set of beliefs about the Internet’s value.
Digital divide research, achievements and shortcomings
The Internet and Knowledge Gaps
Although the knowledge gap hypothesis is often mentioned in connection with the social consequences of the Information Society, there is little discussion of its theoretical background or specific
The Participation Divide Among "Online Experts": Experience, Skills and Psychological Factors as Predictors of College Students' Web Content Creation
This study explored factors that predict online content creation among college students. A Web-based survey revealed that there are differences by gender, race, and age even among this wired group.