ICT Takeup and Use Still Patchy (updated)

Another fascinating report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project gives the result of a survey on ICT use within the general population.
The author, John Horrigan, splits people into 10 categories which are intriguing in themselves. His summary is shown below.

Only the first two categories (15%) are totally enthusiastic about ICTs in their lives. After reading the article it was hard to place myself in any of the categories. In the end I decided I was an Enthusiastic Veteran (hardly ever use a cell phone) with a touch of Connector!

Then I read the LINT blog entry by tango entitled ‘Where Do You Fit?‘ which points to an online survey that calculates your category. In that test I rated as an Omnivore; not what I expected at all.

Omnivores: 8% of American adults constitute the most active participants in the information society, consuming information goods and services at a high rate and using them as a platform for participation and self-expression.

Connectors: 7% of the adult population surround themselves with technology and use it to connect with people and digital content. They get a lot out of their mobile devices and participate actively in online life.

Lackluster Veterans: 8% of American adults make up a group who are not at all passionate about their abundance of modern ICTs. Few like the intrusiveness their gadgets add to their lives and not many see ICTs adding to their personal productivity.

Productivity Enhancers: 9% of American adults happily get a lot of things done with information technology, both at home and at work.

Mobile Centrics: 10% of the general population are strongly attached to their cell phones and take advantage of a range of mobile applications.

Connected but Hassled: 9% of American adults fit into this group. They have invested in a lot of technology, but the connectivity is a hassle for them.

Inexperienced Experimenters: 8% of adults have less ICT on hand than others. They feel competent in dealing with technology, and might do more with it if they had more.

Light but Satisfied: 15% of adults have the basics of information technology, use it infrequently and it does not register as an important part of their lives.

Indifferents: 11% of adults have a fair amount of technology on hand, but it does not play a central role in their daily lives.

Off the Net: 15% of the population, mainly older Americans, is off the modern information network.

Source: Horrigan, John B. A Typology of Information and Communication Technology Users. Washington, DC: Pew Internet & American Life Project, April 2007.

Published with Word 2007.


About Michael Rees
Academic in IT interested in Web 2.0 and social media

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