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Social Dynamics of the Internet

Slides from a talk to the Department of Sociology at the University of Oxford in 2005 on the social dynamics of the Internet. It covered key findings from the first years of the Oxford Internet Surveys (OxIS).

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Social Dynamics of the Internet

  1. 1. The Social Dynamics of the Internet William Dutton Oxford Internet Institute University of Oxford www.oii.ox.ac.uk Presentation for post-graduate students in Sociology, University of Oxford, Manor Road Building, 24 January 2005.
  2. 2. Societal Implications • No Particular Significance? • Transformational Bias? • Reinforcement? ----------------------- v. ‘Reconfiguring Access’
  3. 3. • Oxford Internet Surveys • World Internet Project • Qualitative Research The Internet and Everyday Life
  4. 4. OxIS 2003 • Probability sample, projectable to England, Wales and Scotland • 14 years and older • June-July 2003 [February-March 2005] • Face to face interviews • 2,030 respondents • 66% response rate
  5. 5. • 5th Year • Initiated 2000 • 15 nations (and expanding) • Oxford 2003 (WIP Conference) World Internet Project (WIP)
  6. 6. • Large N, longitudinal panels • Multi-disciplinary • Independent -- multi-client • Common core questions • Unique national questions WIP Strategy
  7. 7. • Diffusion of the Internet • Culture of the Net -- Cybertrust • Societal Implications Themes Across Areas
  8. 8. • Tracking ‘Digital Divides’ Dynamics of Diffusion
  9. 9. Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May- 28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030. Use in Britain, 2003 Users Dropouts Non-users 35% 59% Source: OxIS 6% N= 2,030
  10. 10. Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ______________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________ Cross-National Use, circa 2003
  11. 11. Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________ Percent Who Use the Internet: Lowest and Highest Economic Quartiles
  12. 12. Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________ Gender and Internet Use, circa 2003
  13. 13. Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________ Gender and Hours Users Spend Online per Week
  14. 14. New Broadband Divides in Britain, 2003 Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May- 28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030. User already on broadband 11% User probably going on broadband 24% Non- user 41% User not thinking of broadband 24%
  15. 15. Dynamics of Diffusion • Tracking ‘Digital Divides’ • The ‘Digital Choice’
  16. 16. 98% 67% 22% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Pupils Working Age Retired INTERNET USE IN BRITAIN BY LIFE STAGE Q. Do you yourself use the Internet at home, work, school, college, or elsewhere ? Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May-28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030. (% Users) Pupils: age 14-22 years and in full time education. Working age: employed of any age and all other persons not in employment up to age 55. Retired: 55 or over and are not in employment.
  17. 17. Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________ Internet Use by Age, circa 2003
  18. 18. Trust in the Internet • Tracking trends in cybertrust
  19. 19. Dimensions of Trust • Net-confidence: reliability of information on the net, confidence in ‘people running the Internet’, people you can communicate with on the Internet. • Net-risks: perceived risks to privacy, security of information, accurately judging quality of products
  20. 20. Trust: Confidence
  21. 21. Trust: Perceived Risk Table 6. Net Risks 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 Broadband N arrow band PastU ser N on-user PercentDisagree Puts privacy at risk People get personal information Difficult to assess products
  22. 22. Society and the Net • Tracking Trends in Cybertrust • Net as an ‘Experience’ Technology
  23. 23. Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________ Percent of Users Who Purchase Online by Experience
  24. 24. Internet Users by Experience Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  25. 25. Bad Experience Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________ Too much SPAM Obscene, abusive e- mail Virus Likely fraud PercentExperiencing Experiences of E-Mail Users in Britain, 2003 (N= 1,045) 18% 47% 17% 23%
  26. 26. Impact: Sociability • Isolating,Connecting, Reconfiguring?
  27. 27. Average Hours per Week Spent Socializing with Friends: Users vs. Non-users Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  28. 28. “Has the use of Internet increased or decreased your contact with your family and friends?” Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  29. 29. Average Number of Online Friends Met in Person Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ _______________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  30. 30. Number of Online Friends Never Met in Person Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  31. 31. Average Number of Online Friends Met in Person: by User Category Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.org/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  32. 32. Average Number of Online Friends Never Met in Person by User Category Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  33. 33. • Information: what you read, hear, see; what you know • People: who you know; with whom you communicate – who is in? who is out? • Services: what you consume; who pays what to whom • Technologies: access to other information and communication technologies (ICTs) Reconfiguring Access to: Dutton, W. (1999), Society on the Line (Oxford: Oxford Un Press).
  34. 34. Reconfiguring Access • Isolating, Connecting, Reconfiguring? • Reshaping Media Use?
  35. 35. Average Hours per Week Spent Reading Books: Users vs. Non-users Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  36. 36. Average Hours per Week Spent Watching Television: Users vs. Non-users Source: http://www.worldinternetproject.net/ ____________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________
  37. 37. Reconfiguring Access • Isolating, Connecting, Reconfiguring? • Reshaping Media Use? • Reshaping Access to Public Services
  38. 38. I nternet for Public Services, Britain 2003 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 Doctor, hospital, health service Get tax info, or pay Get info about schools Other public services Any of these uses Percent of I nternet Users ( N = 1,201) Nearly 40% of Britons online use public information services Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May- 28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030.
  39. 39. Social Class and e- Public S ervices 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 A B C1 C2 D E All SocialClass Percent of I nternet Users ( N = 1201) Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May- 28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030. Social Class Shapes Use of Public Information
  40. 40. Education and Use of e- Public Services 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 GCSC/O-level/CSE Vocational A-level, equiv. Un BA or equiv. Higher Degree Education Percent of I nternet Users ( N= 1201) Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May- 28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030. Education is Positively Associated with Use
  41. 41. Age and Use of e- P ublic S ervices 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 14-15 16-24 25-34 35-44 45-54 55-64 65+ Age Percent of I nternet Users ( N= 1201) Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May- 28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030. Public Information Accessed More by Older Citizens
  42. 42. Experience and Use for Public I nformation 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 Less than one 1-2 years 2-3 years 3-4 years 4-5 years Over 5 Experience Percent of I nternet Users, N= 1201 Source: Oxford Internet Survey (OxIS), results of a nationwide representative survey of Britons aged 14 and older, 23 May- 28 June 2003. Number of respondents: 2,030. Proximity to the Internet: Experience Shapes Use
  43. 43. Emerging Themes: • Diffusion: Digital Choices and Divides • Dimensions of Cybertrust • Experience Technology • Transformative Impact: Reconfiguring Access

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