Life without internet…a breath of fresh air, or is it?

Wed 18 April 2012 15:00, Ramcy Simoons

Life without internet…a breath of fresh air, or is it?

Some say there are no coincidences in life, yet a minute or so when I started writing this article this morning we experienced some wifi troubles. Not withstanding the fact that contingency plans were automatically activated, the little time that all of us were ‘biz-immobilised’ forced me to reflect even more on the ‘or is it’ as stated in the title.

Turns out that the folks at Pew Internet have been researching this in the U.S. since 2000 and as it happens recently released new findings, based on a 2011 survey, administered by landline and cell phone in English and Spanish to 2260 adults age 18 and older. 

Reasons not to go online



Pew elaborates on the image above

“Among adults who do not use the internet, almost half have told us that the main reason they don’t go online is because they don’t think the internet is relevant to them. Most have never used the internet before, and don’t have anyone in their household who does. About one in five say that they do know enough about technology to start using the internet on their own, and only one in ten told us that they were interested in using the internet or email in the future.”

Pew continues by telling us that the elderly, those who are educationally challenged (less than highschool education), lower income bracket households (<$ 30K annually), and those who prefered taking their survey in Spanish rather than English were the least likely to have internet access..

Other groups in trouble? 

Yes because the Pew report also states that approximately 1 out of 4 adults (27%) living with disability is significantly less likely than adults without a disability to go online (54% vs. 81%). And it gets even worse for some, because 1 out of every 50 adults with a disability or illness has great difficulty in using the internet or just has to face the fact that going online is simply impossible.

Isn’t there any good news then? 

Well here’s what Pew had to report on this matter “The internet access gap closest to disappearing is that between whites and minorities. Differences in access persist, especially in terms of adults who have high speed broadband at home, but they have become significantly less prominent over the years – and have disappeared entirely when other demographic factors (including language proficiency) are controlled for.”


My 2 cents

I find it very hard to ‘walk in no-internet shoes’ because I am lucky or spoiled (however you flip it) to work and live in the country with the highest broadband penetration in the world and on top of that it's no surprise that a lot of us rather ‘skip breakfast’ amongst other things (PC correct) than run the risk of ‘ever’ being offline. Think about it while you stack up reasons why you don't need the internet...

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