The Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) has released its much vaunted, year long, study “Spreading the benefits of Digital Participation”, its blueprint for universal digital participation in Scotland. It stipulates three priority areas - access, motivation and skills development.

The internet needs to be a safe place
Scottish newspapers

Along with my colleague Dr Alex Benchimol, Senior Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Glasgow, I’ve been looking at the challenges the Scottish Press is facing, from adapting to a digital age to maintaining a distinct Scottish identity.

Can print journalism adapt to the digital revolution

The plan to reduce the welfare budget by £18 billion will have significant implications for the Citizens Advice service and the thousands of individuals who seek its help each year. In addition, it is the UK government’s mission to get up to 80% of welfare benefits applications submitted online.

This leaves Citizens Advice with the difficult issue of sticking to the provision of advice or going further and actively helping those struggling with electronic applications to get online.

IT training?

Digital gap turning into a dgital gulf

The Advisory Committee for Scotland (ACS) discusses a wide range of questions each year as part of its regular advice to Ofcom.

When Ofcom’s annual Communications Market Report (CMR) on Scotland is being compiled, we always comment on the findings before they become public. Now that the CMR for Scotland been published, it’s worth highlighting a few key issues.


Local issues brought into sharp focus

One facet of the Scottish government's digital strategy is for Scotland to be world class by 2020.

In October, the government committed itself to defining what this might mean by December of this year:

The Communications Consumer Panel has argued that, alongside investment in infrastructure, government needs to invest much more in encouraging take-up and use of digital services. See link at bottom.

Greater simplicity will engage more users

Maria Miller, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, has given Ofcom the go-ahead for the renewal of Channel 3 services.  New licences will be issued before the current ones expire in 2014, the year in which Scotland’s independence referendum will take place.

Getting to grips with localism

Alex Salmond, Scotland’s First Minister, set a hare running at the Edinburgh International Television Festival in August when he presented his view of a new post-independence landscape.

Chasing Mr Salmond’s hare
Scotland flag


Broadband take-up in Scotland has risen faster than any other UK nation over the last year, jumping 7 percentage points over 2011.

Sixty-eight per cent of homes in Scotland now have broadband, up from 61% a year earlier.

The figures are contained in Ofcom's 2012 Communications Market Report for Scotland.

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