Tech Wraps Growing Web Around World

Some worry about cultural loss as cell phones, e-mail spread
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 8, 2007 1:40 PM CDT
TEHRAN Woman uses a cellular phone by a busy street near the bazaar. The women of Iran seem to have lost their colors. Most of them wear black - perpetuating the mourning of the earl (PAR154402)   (Magnum Photos)
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(Newser) – Global cellphone and computer usage is up dramatically as inequalities in technology drop. Cellphone ownership has grown 20% in the US, where 80% of the population uses computers, third in the world behind Sweden and South Korea. Computer usage is up in 26 of 35 countries in a new Pew survey, PC World reports, and even 6% of Tanzanians log on.

But while technology narrows the distance between borders and aids economic integration, the lead researcher concludes, a backlash endangers globalization. As citizens in developing countries welcome free markets, concern mounts about the loss of their cultures. Many worry also that the ongoing tech boom threatens their environments.