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Retired Mod     2,3k 6

Omvangrijk, maar interessant rapport laat zien hoe invloedrijk het Internet geworden is (in de VS) met als titel: "Use of the internet at major life moments "

 

http://www.pewinternet.org/reports/reports.asp?Report=58&Section=ReportLevel1&Field=Level1ID&ID=256

 

De belangrijkste uitkomsten uit het onderzoek:

Major findings

 

Information on the Web is important to significant numbers of Americans when they are making important choices related to education and job training, investments and big-ticket purchases, and health care for themselves or for loved ones. Online material is also important to a relatively large number of people who are looking for new jobs and new places to live.

 

In a survey of 1,415 Internet users in January 2002, we asked whether they had gone through any of 15 major events or decisions in the past two years. If they had, we asked whether their use of the Internet played any kind of role in the events they dealt with or in the decisions they made. Their responses showed that:

 

 

14 million American Internet users who got more education or training for their career in the past two years say their use of the Internet was crucial or important in upgrading their skills.

 

14 million Americans who purchased cars in the past two years say their use of the Internet played a crucial or important role in their decision.

 

11 million Americans who helped a loved one deal with an illness in the past two years say their use of the Internet played a crucial or important role in their aid to another person. More than 4 million Americans say the Internet helped them cope with their own struggle with a major illness in the past two years.

 

11 million Americans who chose a school or college for themselves or a child in the past two years say their use of the Internet played a crucial or important role in that decision.

 

9 million Americans who made a major financial or investment decision in the past two years say their use of the Internet played a crucial or important role in that decision.

 

8 million Americans who changed jobs in the past two years say their use of the Internet played a crucial or important role in helping them through that transition. And 8 million Americans who found new places to live say the Internet played a crucial or important role in the search.

 

The Internet played a lesser role in romantic relationships. Modest proportions of our respondents reported that the Internet was a vital player when they started relationships (2 million people), ended relationships (2 million people), or got married (1 million people). No one we spoke to told us that the Internet played an important role when they were getting a divorce.

 

The survey showed that notable numbers of Americans turn to the Internet as a basic reference tool to gather information and, in some cases, to compare alternative courses of action. The pattern of responses to our questions suggests that the Internet is relatively more important in episodes where the abundance of information online is especially helpful, where the activity is focused on learning new material on a complex subject, and where the ability to compare information is especially significant. At the same time, the role of the Internet is less significant in intimate situations, perhaps because the need for accurate information is often secondary to the emotions of the moment.

 

Here is a list of the activities we asked about. In the survey, all respondents were asked whether they had gone through any of these major moments in the past two years. The Internet users who said they had were then asked whether the Internet played any role when they went through that moment or made that decision. The table below ranks Internet users in each category who say the Internet played a crucial or important role in their decision or their experience:

 

36% of the Internet users who chose a school or college for themselves or their children say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

33% of the Internet users who started a new hobby say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

29% of the Internet users who got additional education or training for their career say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

27% of the Internet users who bought a car say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

26% of the Internet users who helped another person deal deal with a major illness say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

25% of the Internet users who changed jobs say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

24% of the Internet users who dealt with a major illness themselves say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

22% of the Internet users who made a major investment or financial decision say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

22% of the Internet users who found a new place to live say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

15% of the Internet users who started a new romantic relationship say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

15% of the Internet users who ended a romantic relationshipsay their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

14% of the Internet users who got married say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

13% of the Internet users who became involved in a lawsuit, criminal case or other legal action say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

10% of the Internet users who received a major promotion or raise say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

0% of the Internet users who got divorced say their use of the Internet played a crucial/important role.

 

This list illustrates that, among the issues we asked about, the role of the Internet was most pronounced for those looking for schools and colleges and least pronounced for those who got promotions or raises - and not at all a factor among those we sampled who had recently been through a divorce.

 

Generally, younger Americans - those under 30 - were the most likely to have undergone several of the big changes in their lives or faced major decisions in recent times. However, there was no indication that the Internet played any different role in these decisions or activities for young Americans than it did for older Americans.

 

As is often the case with Internet use, those with considerable experience online - those who had been online at least three years - were the most likely to turn to the Internet when they were facing a major moment, and they were the most likely to report that the material they found online played a serious role in their decisions. This is further evidence from our research that the longer someone has been online, the more likely that person is to use the Internet as a tool for serious research and important life activities.


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