Dr. Ann Gordon
The growth and integration of new technology into lifestyles worldwide have many Americans asking questions about privacy and security. Although there are high rewards at stake for governments, corporations, and individuals who embrace technological changes, the risks of these developments are also at the forefront of people’s thoughts. Using the recent data of the Chapman University National Survey of Fears, I examine correlations and means to determine the specific populations in America that fear technology. I go on to detail possible causes of this fear using the available research on the subject. As we move forward further into the 21st century, we encounter a world where businesses can track your web browsing habits and sell that data, where Eric Snowden has exposed the invasive policies of the NSA, and where robotics and AI are advancing at unprecedented rates. The American fear of technology holds more weight with every passing year. The findings of this research show that the elderly, low income, and less educated American is most likely to hold fears about technology. The dimensions of education and income are closely linked due to the education system in the United States. These two factors work to create a digital divide of access and skill. Thus, the American fear of technology comes from lack of experience with reliable and advanced technology.
Keeter, Callan, "Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Bot? The American Fear of Technology in the 21st Century" (2017). Student Research Day Abstracts and Posters. 227.