Why Americans Who Don’t Use The Internet Don’t Use It

What am I supposed to do with an ethernet cable this short?
(Photo by Hyku / Josh Hallet, Flickr.com)

The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project just released an interesting report about, among other things,

The report, Home Broadband 2010, is nominally about how broadband adoption in the U.S. has slowed dramatically and if Americans think that affordable broadband should be a major U.S. government priority.

However, the survey results from the 21 percent of Americans who don’t use is the Internet is illuminating:

  • Approximately half of them don’t find online content relevant to their lives, so they do not go online.
  • Most aren’t interested in going online. Only one in ten say would like to start using the internet in the future.
  • Most aren’t comfortable using computers or the internet. Six in ten say they would need assistance getting. Only one in five know enough to start using the internet on their own.
  • Non-users of the Internet are actually less likely to use it if the government placed a high priority on the spread of broadband connections.

I won’t go into too many details here because you should go the Pew website and download the report (PDF).

Overall, broadband adoption has slowed dramatically in the U.S., except for  growth among African-Americans, which was especially high last year.

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