Survey Reveals Why People Avoid Using Internet

Dennis Faas's picture

These days there are fewer and fewer people who say they don't regularly use the world wide web.

According to a new report from Pew, which frequently studies the evolving relationship between people and technology, in 1995 about one in ten adult Americans used the web. Today, the ratio is closer to 4 in 5. (Source:

Nevertheless, nearly everyone knows someone, somewhere, who outright refuses to go online.

The new study reveals that a large chunk of those 'no-Net' people stay away because they simply have no interest in using the Internet.

Bored With Online Technology

According to the Pew report, lack of interest is a highly significant factor in why people stay off the web.

"Among current non-internet users, almost half (48%) say...they don't think the Internet [is] relevant to them," the report reads. "They don't want to use the Internet, don't need to use it to get the information they want or conduct the communication they want." (Source:

Finances a Problem For Some Non-Users

Other factors also influence behavior concerning Internet attraction and avoidance. Many survey respondents who don't use the Internet said either they don't own a computer, they feel the Internet is too expensive, they believe getting online is simply too difficult, or they see surfing the web as a waste of their time.

The study also found that many of the Americans who showed no interest in going online reported that no one in their household regularly used the web. Others have simply never given the Internet a chance.

Many non-users don't know how. Of people who have no Internet experience, only one in five claimed to feel knowledgeable enough about Internet technology to go online if they so desired.

Ethnicity Becoming Less of a Factor

The Pew study also highlights groups that are least likely to favor using the Internet. For example, it notes that approximately 59 per cent of American seniors, and 60 per cent of U.S. adults who failed to complete high school, do not go online.

Given the number of respondents who indicated finances were a factor in not going online, it's no surprise to many observers that 40 per cent of people living in households with an annual income of less than $30,000 do not use the web.

According to this Pew report, ethnicity is becoming far smaller a factor in tracking Internet usage:

"The Internet gap closest to disappearing is that between whites and minorities. Differences in access persist...but they have become significantly less prominent over the years." (Source:


Rate this article: 
No votes yet