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Monday, 03 March 2014 10:52

90 per cent of Americans use the Internet

Written by Nick Farrell



The other ten percent use the banjo

A new survey shows that 90 percent of American adults surveyed use the Internet, and almost all say that the Internet has been a good thing for them. Among the 1,000 American adults surveyed by Pew Research in January, nearly 1 in ten Americans use the Internet.

That number is even higher for certain groups. Internet use was claimed by 99 percent of people in households that earn $75,000 or more, 97 percent of adults ages 18-29, and 97 percent of those with college degrees. A full 68 percent of those polled connect to the Internet via mobile devices. On a related note, ownership of cell phones jumped to 90 percent in the new poll from 53 percent in Pew's first survey back in 2000. Smartphone ownership surged to 58 percent this year from 35 percent in 2011. More than 90 per cent also had a good experience with the world wide web.

The Internet was a good thing for society said 76 percent, a bad thing by 15 percent, and a mixture of the two by 8 percent. Just over half of all Internet users said the Internet would be "very hard" to give up, with most of those citing job-related reasons or other essential needs. And 49 percent of mobile phone owners said the same thing about their devices. The Internet is sometimes perceived as unfriendly territory due to the trolls and arguments. (I didn't know our comment section was so popular. Ed)

However, 70 percent of those polled said they'd been treated kindly or generously by their fellow Internet users. A quarter reported that they were treated unkindly or had been attacked. Further, 56 percent said they have seen online groups help a person or community resolve a problem. Only 25 percent said they left an online group because the interaction was too heated or the members were unpleasant to each other.

Nick Farrell

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