After the hackathon was over, Maurice gathered every team memberâ€™s contact information and wrote it all down on the back of the business card I gave him. Later that night, I received a phone call from him, and he asked if I would be able to teach him how to code. I love teaching, and Maurice seemed like a nice kid, so I offered to help. He immediately said, â€œokay, go,â€ and awaited instruction. I explained that I wouldnâ€™t be able to teach him over the phone, but then I found out that he didnâ€™t have internet at home. If that surprises you, you should know that this is actually a bit more common than you may think.
— Techâ€™s High Barrier to Entry for the Underprivileged â€” Backchannel â€” Medium
This is why the so-called “meritocracy” of technology is bullshit. When someone is so poor that they can’t afford Internet access, or even a computer, how can they learn to program in the first place? Tech is only a “meritocracy” if you are privileged enough to have the first rung of the ladder in reach. Few kids are as lucky as Maurice is to have people helping him.