Mobile Technology News & Mobile Fun

Mobile Phone Appropriation in the Favelas of Rio de Janeiro

Author: 
Silva, Adriana de Souza e, Daniel M. Sutko, Fernando A. Salis, Claudio de Souza e Silva

Publication Date: 
Mar 2011

Publication Type: 
Report/White paper

Publication language: 
English

Abstract: 

This qualitative case study describes the social appropriation of mobile phones among low-income communities in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) by asking how favela (slum) residents appropriate cell phones. Findings highlight the difficulty these populations encounter in acquiring and using cell phones due to social and economic factors, and the consequent subversive or illegal tactics used to gain access to such technology.

 

Moreover, these tactics are embedded in and exemplars of the cyclic power relationships between high- and low-income populations that constitute the unique use of mobile technologies in these Brazilian slums. The article concludes by suggesting that future research on technology in low-income communities focus instead on the relationship of people to technology rather than a dichotomization of their access or lack thereof.

Location
Countries: 
Research Paper – Link to or Upload
Citation: 
Silva, Adriana de Souza e, Daniel M. Sutko, Fernando A. Salis, Claudio de Souza e Silva. "Mobile Phone Appropriation In The Favelas Of Rio De Janeiro, Brazil." (2011)

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