FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

Thursday, August 12, 2004

The Net is a Big Part of Our Lives

From the Knock-Us-Over-With-A-Feather Department...

MSNBC has posted an interesting article about Internet use citing research from the Pew Internet & American Life Project. Pew's survey discovered that of the Internet users they surveyed, 88 percent said it played a role in their daily lives, and a third said it played a "major" role. More than half said that being online helps them participate in certain activities, and two thirds said that their lives would be affected if they could not log on.

Among the activities Pew found more people are doing online are:

  • Getting maps and directions
  • Communicating with friends and family
  • Buying tickets
  • Banking
  • Paying bills
  • Gathering information (wow!)
Pew found, however, that we're not doing everything online. Some of the activities that remain offline include:

  • Reading for fun
  • Making everyday purchases, such as groceries
  • Watching videos
  • Meeting new people (interesting, given the proliferation of online dating services and the like)

Not surprising, the Pew study also found that users with broadband connections use the Internet more than those with dialup.