ICT or Information Communication Technology has an essential role in modifying, and modernizing present day's learning and educational systems. Similar to Information technology, ICT is another technology that helps people to get access to information.
ICT focuses on communication that includes wireless network, internet, as well as communication mediums. Market is filled with a wide range of ICT tools, that includes computing industry, electronic display, and telecommunications. ICT impacts our life in positive and negative ways. Let us know more about these effects in detail.
Positive effects of ICT[edit | edit source]
Increased access to services[edit | edit source]
The major benefit of ICT on people is the increased access to services, and information that has accompanied in the progress of the Internet. ICT provides quick access to affordable, and better means of communication in the form of Instant Messaging, and VoIP phone. It brings exciting ways to indulge in entertainment, leisure, build contacts, make relations, and procure services, and goods from suppliers.
This technology assist in enhanced access to education, in the form of on-line tutorials, and distance learning. People get to enjoy newer modes of learning as virtual reality, and interactive multi-media. Mobile working, flexible work schedules, virtual offices, etc. help people to enjoy improved job opportunities in the communications area.
A relevant example of how ICTs create access to services is the use of mobile phones to increase access to financial products. M-PESA, for example, is an African financial service that uses mobile phones to make money transactions, which allows a individuals to send and receive money.
New tools and new opportunities[edit | edit source]
The second important impact of Information Communication Technology is that it provides access to a wide range of new tools that have not existed before.
ICT provides distinctive, and highly innovative set of tools and processes in areas of photography. Use of photo-editing software, high quality printers, and digital cameras enables people to yield impressive outcome. In this way, these technologies have replaced the need for a photographic studio to a large extent.
ICT also aids people to overcome their disabilities. Screen reading or magnification software assist blind or partially sighted people to work using an ordinary text instead of using Braille.
Enhances organizational operations[edit | edit source]
There are basically three main regions that are influenced by ICT in an organization: communications, security, and information management.
- Communication: ICT provides technologies like VoIP are more efficient and affordable that other forms of commonly used communication in the organization such as telephone, messaging, email, and sales catalogues. VoIP allows people to access to large and worldwide markets easily.
- Flexible response: Organizations that have implemented ICT ensures good communication. This implies that they can quickly and easily respond to changes. This technology implies improved customer relations, better supply chain for services, and goods, serve customers efficiently by quickly manufacturing new products as per their requirements etc.
- Information management: Organizations greatly benefit from ICT for management of their information. Better stock control, less wastage, increased cash flow, etc. are some of the benefits realized by mangers who use ICT in their organization. By being constantly updated of the information, they can form better decisions.
- Enhanced Security: ICT can improve security of the data. Its encryption methods help in keeping data secure from people with malicious intent. This technology stores encryption for storing as well as sending data electronically. This enables commercial secrecy within the organization. ICT uses physical security systems to access data such as face or iris recognition, or fingerprint detection.
Negative effects of ICT[edit | edit source]
Job losses[edit | edit source]
A major negative effect of ICT is seen in the form of job loss. This technology is capable of automating commonly used operations in an organization so that humans are no more required for performing those tasks. Manual operations are getting replaced by automation that has become the sole cause for job loss. Some of the examples being robots that replaces people for the assembly of parts, a barcode scanner replaces a worker for checkout tasks, etc. Use of ICT leads to adverse economic consequences, social consequences, loss of earnings, loss of self-esteem, and status among people in the society.
Reduced personal interaction[edit | edit source]
Work from home, that is considered as a benefit of ICT, also has negative impact on a person. A person loses touch with people due to reduced social interaction. This may make them feel unhappy and isolated.
Digital rights[edit | edit source]
The use of ICT can pose a risk to rights such as privacy and the right to be forgotten of individuals, which can pose a risk to vulnerable groups in society. Some examples are:
- Privacy: publishing or leaks of personal and sensible information.
- Disinformation and misinformation: ICT can pose a risk through the spread of false and innacurate information.
- Intellectual property gatekeeping: reducing access to resources through the extension of copyright.
- Democracy: the use of ICT tools to undermine opposing voices in democracies.
Environmental impact[edit | edit source]
ICT has a direct impact on environmental issues through the extraction of natural resources required for electronic devices and the use of fossil fuels for its operation.
- Energy usage: digital technologies use energy that may come from non-renewable sources. As digital processes become the norm, the use of fossil fuels and other sources of energy become ubiquitous and constant.
- Planned obsolescence and e-waste: the lack of repairability of many digital devices and the end of life of electronics which pollute the environment.
- Resource extraction: the increasing use of digital technologies leads to more mining and use of other resources such as
- Jevons paradox: as the efficiency of a resource increases, more people will use it.