Feeds

15% of Americans still holding off from this newfangled interweb thing

The old, the dumb, the poor

SANS - Survey on application security programs

The latest data from the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project has found that there is still a sizable percentage of Americans who really don't get this internet thing, with 15 per cent never going online and another 9 per cent only doing so at work.

US internet use data from Pew

47 million people still without cat videos

Of those online holdouts, over a third said that they felt the internet was "not relevant" to them, and 32 per cent said that using it was either too hard or that they were concerned about the threat of viruses and identity theft. This latter figure has nearly doubled since Pew's 2010 survey. and shows that the rising tide of online crime is a significant deterrent effect to use.

Prices of computers and internet access is also cited as a reason by 19 per cent of the holdouts, with 7 per cent saying the internet was unavailable to them – whether because of their location or due to physical limitations.

Pew's study found that, not surprisingly, it's the older members of the community who are the least likely to go online. In all, 44 per cent of those over 65 declined to become silver surfers, with 17 per cent of the 50-to-64 age group staying free of internet companies' clutches. By contrast, only 2 per cent of 18-to-29 year-olds eschewed going online.

Education and income are also strong indicators for those who steer clear of the internet. Of those surveyed, 43 per cent of internet holdouts had only a basic high school diploma, compared to 4 per cent who'd been to college, and 24 per cent of non-users earned less than $30,000 per year.

Surprisingly, 14 per cent of the internet refuseniks have tried going online and then abandoned it. And while they may not want the internet itself, 44 per cent said they had asked someone to look something up online for them. Nearly a quarter have an internet user in their home, presumably someone who is growing sick and tired of being asked to perform searches for them.

While 15 per cent might sound like a lot (over 47 million people, according to the latest census data) the rate of online luddism is falling steadily – back in 2004 over a third of US citizens were offline.

There will always be a hard core of non-participants (we're not expecting the Amish to go online in large numbers, for example) but Pew's data shows they will be a shrinking minority in the future. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Virgin Media so, so SORRY for turning spam fire-hose on its punters
Hundreds of emails flood inboxes thanks to gaffe
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
AT&T dangles gigabit broadband plans over 100 US cities
So soon after a mulled Google Fiber expansion, fancy that
AT&T threatens to pull out of FCC wireless auctions over purchase limits
Company wants ability to buy more spectrum space in auction
Google looks to LTE and Wi-Fi to help it lube YouTube tubes
Bandwidth hogger needs tube embiggenment if it's to succeed
Turnbull gave NBN Co NO RULES to plan blackspot upgrades
NBN Co faces huge future Telstra bills and reduces fibre footprint
NBN Co plans fibre-to-the-basement blitz to beat cherry-pickers
Heading off at the pass operation given same priority as blackspot fixing
NBN Co in 'broadband kit we tested worked' STUNNER
Announcement of VDSL trial is not proof of concept for fibre-to-the-node
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.