Tapping into my inner stats nerd: Internet Users 2011

Back in 2007 Freshminds drew a graphic for one of our joint reports that showed that as more people got online the deeper the barriers were for those who remained left out. At the time we were having a go at predicting the future, and the latest stats from the ONS shows that this hypothesis has now come true.

I’ve done another slide deck – Internet Use in the UK: The Evidence June 2011 – which I’ve put on slideshare so you can see all the stats; you can download and use this if you want to. It brings you stats from the ONS’s new Internet Access Quarterly Update now embedded as part of the Labour Force Survey, and Ofcom’s latest bi-annual UK Adults’ Media Literacy Report for 2011.

The UK really can become a digital nation.

  • 40.8m people in the UK use the internet everyday.
  • Over 93% of everyone under the age of 45 is online
  • and more than 85% of people who live in London and the South East.
  • 85% of all men are online.

However the people who are being left behind is similarly stark. 8.7m have never used the internet. Only 17% of women aged over 75 are online; so now I know that Mum’s special in yet another way. 1 in 3 of all people who are disabled have never used the internet – that’s 4.2m people. And almost a third of the people in Northern Ireland have never been online.

The people who are offline and need targeting are: older people, people in the DE socio-economic group, people with disabilities, and women.

I’m the kind of person who would love to get my hands on the data behind the published stats so I could see the overlaps – especially based on disability and age. Maybe a future project.

Interestingly only a half (54%) of all adults in the UK have ever used a government or local authority website or other online service (eg email). This shows that there’s still a lot of persuasion to do with the online as well as the offline population where online government is concerned.

The best thing about these stats is that it really does feel as if it’s within our grasp to fulfill the vision of a truly networked nation. With a targeted approach we can make sure no-one is left behind.




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