|Some adults have no Internet interest|
|Written by Erin Hogg, Daily Vidette Columnist|
|Sunday, 15 April 2012 12:23|
Can you imagine one day without the Internet? No Facebook. No reddit. No Twitter. Online assignments on Blackboard? Forget it. No email. Online banking? Nope. That funny YouTube video you want to share? Nice try.
The concept of the Internet is something we value and pay fees for to access on our phones and in our homes. Most of us in college have mini panic attacks if the Internet goes down or if we’re in a classroom where the WiFi signal is terrible.
But for one in five adults in the Unites States, the Internet is still unknown to them.
According to a new Pew report, these one in five Americans are simply not interested in online activities like Facebook or YouTube. Among current non-Internet users, they don’t think the Internet is relevant to them and having a computer is either too expensive for them, too difficult to use, or just a waste of time. Only 10 percent said they would be interested in the Internet or email in the future.
Most of the people who do not go online are older, did not complete high school, or make less than $30,000 a year. Disabilities also interfere with some people wanting access to the Internet.
However, all of this considered, the digital divide is close to disappearing when compared to the early years of the Internet. More people are getting access through wireless mobile networks, but there are still people that do not have broadband in their homes.
There is no argument over the usefulness of the Internet. Without it, I don’t think anything would be the same.
The way we connect with our friends and families or creep on enemies is unprecedented because of the rise in social networking. People can get their news, weather, and sports updates in the blink of an eye while simultaneously composing tweets about issues they care about.
Email, instant messengers, and Skype have made relationships with people even stronger because of the ability to communicate constantly. I know if I lost all of this, I would feel very disconnected and anxious. However, for people who have never known this, the Internet is not a big loss for them.
My grandmother has never owned a computer and it is something I regret not trying to get her interested in.
She has her hobbies and activities like cooking and watching her soap operas, and there is so much online that I think she would love to explore regarding her interests.
She could even find new hobbies and maybe be able to connect with her family members in Pennsylvania easier.
But she is an old fashioned lady; she doesn’t use a dishwasher, I don’t think she has ever owned a DVD player, and she spends most of her days doing puzzles or getting her hair done at the “beauty shop,” as she calls it. It’s always weird to visit her because I will take my tablet or laptop, but then be disappointed because she does not have the Internet.
It’s probably too late now as she turns 84 this summer, but I wonder sometimes if I, as her only granddaughter, should have taught her how to use a computer.
She belongs to the one in five Americans that do not think the Internet would be relevant to their interests. I know there would be tons of websites and information that she would like but, for her, it’s just not an option.
One day, I’m sure we will see very little people who are not connected to the Internet. Services will get better and cheaper, and electronics will become even more affordable over time. Hopefully the desire to go online will be stronger. Maybe it’s time some of us in the younger generations show our older family members the joys of browsing the Internet.