Spotlight: Northwest Territories
The connection between internet access and .CA domain registrations in northern Canada
When comparing Yellowknife to the remainder of the Northwest Territories, we can see the gap that exists in terms of the amount of .CA domains registered. Specifically, Yellowknife is over-represented at 81 .CA domains registered for every 1000 people and the rest of the territory is underrepresented at only 25 domains per 1000 people, compared to the Northwest Territory average of 52 domains per 1000 people. We talked to Kyle Napier, communications coordinator for DigitalNWT, a digital literacy group working to make the case for more affordable and equitable Internet access in the N.W.T, to get his take on the data. He believes there is a clear correlation between domains registered and the equity issues that still exist in the North.
"There is a big debilitating gap. It's no surprise that there are few domains coming from [communities other than the capital] because so many N.W.T. communities have very limited internet access,” says Napier. “The communities with the highest population, that are largely non-Indigenous, are more likely to have the highest internet access. To be clear, even those top-five largest communities are limited by restricted and inequitable internet compared to the south. But that's why you are seeing more domains registered in these communities. They also have higher access to digital literacy because of that. When you talk about the digital divide, it's not only about access issues, it's about how people are able to use internet.”