Pew Reports Honor 25th Anniversary of the World Wide Web

This year, the World Wide Web turns 25 years old. To honor the milestone, the Pew Research Center is releasing a series of reports documenting the Web’s impact on society as a whole. According to the first report, overall, Americans surveyed said that the Internet has been a plus for our society and an especially good thing for individual users.

Pew has been tracking the Internet’s growth since 1995. This first report looks at Internet penetration and highlights Americans’ feelings on the impact that the Internet has had on their lives.

Here are some interesting data points from the report:

  • 87% of American adults said they now use the Internet.
  • 68% of adults said they connect to the Internet with mobile devices like smartphones or tablet computers.
  • 53% of Internet users said the Internet would be, at minimum, “very hard” to give up. This is compared to 35% of all adults who say their television would be very hard to give up.
  • 67% of Internet users said their online communication with family and friends has generally strengthened those relationships.

The data simply confirms a well-known trend – that the growing number of adults connected to the Internet via mobile devices is having a huge impact on how consumers get information, making it easier for them give up other media outlets like TV.  Mobile continues to dramatically disrupt the way consumers are using the Internet to access information and those of us in the local advertising space have seen this first-hand.

In coming months, Pew will release a total of eight reports about emerging trends in more specific areas of digital technology such as privacy, cybersecurity, the “Internet of things,” and net neutrality.  Click here for more information on this first report.

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