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Since office and school closures began in response to the COVID-19 pandemic earlier this year, remote workers and students across the state have been feeling the effects of decreased network speed and sputtering performance on their home networks, leading some to question whether their home internet service is up to the task of keeping them connected with remote co-workers, classmates, and professors. It has even led some policy makers to question if now is the time to reconsider whether high-speed internet should continue to be viewed as a high-tech luxury, or simply a necessity of modern life.
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to remain physically distant from each other but has also created new opportunities for us to remain socially connected. Since UNC-Chapel Hill (UNC) closed its campus in mid-March, I (Alexis) have virtually collaborated with my colleagues in the Sociology Department and at the Carolina Population Center, participated in global dance parties on Instagram, laughed with friends on Google Hangout, and played pub-style trivia over Zoom. Each week, I look…
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