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Digital disconnect

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Silvers are getting left behind in digital India. That’s the conclusion of a new survey conducted by New Delhi-based Agewell Foundation. As PTI reports, the foundation interviewed over 5,000 silvers in the Delhi-NCR region in August-September 2017 to assess the impact of the “ever-widening generation gap” on the lives of elders and found that silvers still find themselves at sea while using computers, laptops, tablets and smartphones. Here are some highlights of the survey:

  • About 85.8 per cent of respondents were found to be digitally illiterate; of this, 76.5 per cent were men and 95 per cent were women.
  • 74.9 per cent of digitally illiterate respondents said their digital illiteracy was adversely affecting their life.
  • About 51 per cent bemoaned the lack of facilities to learn computer applications and get digital training.
  • Another 44.6 per cent claimed that they had no idea about digital literacy.
  • 85 per cent rued lack of communication with younger members of their families because of their inability to understand the digital language of communication.
  • 82.4 per cent of digitally illiterate respondents claimed they consider themselves “marginalised” in the modern age of IT and Internet.
  • On a positive note, 69.8 per cent showed an interest in a digital financial literacy programme.

Indeed, the Department of Geriatrics at All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) can attest to this silver lining—their study of 300 elder patients in the capital reveals that 75 per cent of them are keen to use modern gadgets and smartphones to track and maintain their health through mHealth (mobile health) initiatives.

Featured in Harmony — Celebrate Age Magazine
December 2017