This project is a survey based on Red hook WIFI and how the community uses it.
Red hook WIFI is a free internet service for the community provided by the RHI. The digital stewards built and maintain the network. Red Hook WIFI was crucial during Hurricane Sandy because it was the only Internet service for the neighborhood.
Today, we are trying to learn about who uses the Wifi, how they use it and how it can be improved moving forward. Its seems like the community is ready for it to be in NYCHA houses and want a stronger connection while using the Wifi.
My role in this research project was everything. We began with meetings to construct the survey questions, arguments and everything. For example we debated over gender, basically whether or not the other option was appropriate. Some felt it was useless. I felt it should be there so nobody is offended. We want to collect information about gender to see if there is a difference between the way men and women use Red Hook WIFI.
I also did field work, surveying Red Hook as well as data entry. I also learned how to communicate with people quickly, because you have to be persistent in order to get quality answers for surveys in addition to research and the proper terms.
People didn’t really say interesting things about Red Hook WIFI. They were just happy to see youth contributing to something of value in the neighborhood–namely, Red Hook WiFi and our research project.
What surprised me is how those I approached had different responses. For example, many folks walking on the Van Brunt business strip felt rude and obnoxious while people in the projects jump at the opportunity to get involved. It felt good having people in my community who know me support my work as well.
This post is by Javon Webb, a digital steward from generation 9. He has helped in every step of the project and continues to get the most surveys.