Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Young, Male, and Rich?

Pew Research has a new report out on weblogging that is full of nutritious data aggregates and bandwidth goodness. From a poll involving over 1800 people, they found that 7% of internet users (more than 8 million people out of about 120 million U.S. adults) have created a blog or web journal since the polling began in spring of 2002, and 12% have posted a comment or data on a blog (dontcha feel special?). Most amazing, the number of people who read blogs jumped by 58% this year since February, most likely due to the election year and coverage of and by bloggers. Strangely, though, most people (62%) who use the net don't even know what a blog is. So exactly who are these chosen few? According to the report:

"Blog creators are more likely to be:
· Men: 57% are male
· Young: 48% are under age 30
· Broadband users: 70% have broadband at home
· Internet veterans: 82% have been online for six years or more
· Relatively well off financially: 42% live in households earning over $50,000
· Well educated: 39% have college or graduate degrees"
And those who read blogs are identified thus:

"Like bloggers, blog readers are more likely to be young, male, well educated, internet veterans. Still, since our survey February, there has been greater-than-average growth in blog readership among women, minorities, those between the ages of 30 and 49, and those with home dialup connections...
...In contrast, the internet users who did not know about blogs were relative newbies to the internet, less fervent internet users, and those with less educational attainment."
To me, the fascinating thing about this is how easy it is to feel so surrounded by the internet community of my choice that I can fool myself into thinking the whole world experiences what I do. Yet there are so many more converts out there yet to make, and many more weblogs and posters yet to come.
When I first went online in 1995, it felt like setting off into a sparsely populated desert. Now it seems more like getting on the train at rush hour. What might it be like in 5 more years?

You can read the report in pdf here.

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