A new study from the Pew Internet and American Life Project has looked at internet and technology adoption and usage in the US, finding that nearly half of those surveyed do not use interactive features.

Pew's Typology of Information and Communication Technology Users study surveyed 4001 adults, including 2,822 internet users,  and looked at levels of adoption and attitude to Web 2.0 features such as blogging and video sharing.

The survey splits those surveyed into three groups:

  • Elite users - 31% of those surveyed are characterised this way, including 'omnivores', who are veracious users of technology, blogging and uploading videos regularly - these omnivores make up 8% of the survey group.
  • 'Middle of the road' tech users - this group makes up 20% of the survey. They fully embrace mobile technology but are less frequent internet users.
  • Low tech/non-users - the remaining 49% fit into this category, ranging from those who use technology a little (39% of this group), to the remaining 11% who tend to be older, and have neither mobiles nor internet connections.

There is a useful chart at eMarketer, which separates the internet users from the non-users:

Online activitives of US internet users

Age is a big factor in the figures - the top 8% are young, ethnically diverse, and 70% are male. More than half are under 30, whereas the bottom 15% were older, with a median age of 64, and the lowest levels of household income.  

Further Reading:
Web 2.0 participation 'lower than expected'

Graham Charlton

Published 9 May, 2007 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

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Comments (1)


Steve Jay

Charlene Li's Social technographics paper pretty much backed up the 49%.

See http://www.forrester.com/Research/Document/Excerpt/0,7211,42057,00.html

The questions it raises are;

- Is this figure static or is it reducing?

- Does it matter anyway given that the people who ARE interacting with social media and creating content are the opinion formers for the 49%

about 11 years ago

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