ABA’s internet findings

Using the Internet is not the isolating experience sometimes suggested, and adults are more skilled at it than children, according to the results of a research project into Internet usage in Australian homes, commissioned by the Australian Broadcasting Authority.

While the research showed very diverse patterns of Internet usage, families commonly connected to the Internet to assist adult family members with work and study or for children’s education. Children used the Internet mainly for entertainment and staying in touch with their friends.

The research, Internet@home, complements existing information about the extent of Internet access in Australia by looking at patterns of Internet usage in Australian homes and its impact on family life. The research looked at why people connect to the Internet, which family members use it the most and what the Internet is used for.

The ABA will release the results of the research in stages: The first stage, ‘Internet usage’, an overview, is available on the ABA’s web site at www.aba.gov.au. The ABA proposes to release two further overviews, ‘Rules and Tools’ and ‘Information Needs’, in the near future. The final report of the research will be released later this year.