As recently as 1995, 42 percent of American adults said they had never heard of the Internet.  Today, use of the Internet is pervasive at home, work, and on mobile devices.  It is a primary source of news, information, entertainment, and social interaction.  To understand its evolution, Pew conducts surveys and qualitative research that tracks and analyzes how Americans use digital technology, and the ways in which online activity affects their families, communities, health, educational pursuits, politics, and workplace activities.

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Publications – Pew Research Center: Internet, Science & Tech

  • ‘We the People’: Five Years of Online Petitions

    • December 28, 2016

    Americans used President Obama's "We the People" online petitioning system to address health care, veterans’ issues and illnesses among other issues. But the impact of petitions was modest and varied. Read More

  • Online Shopping and E-Commerce

    • December 19, 2016

    New technologies are impacting a wide range of Americans’ commercial behaviors, from the way they evaluate products and services to the way they pay for the things they buy Read More

  • Information Overload

    • December 7, 2016

    Most Americans like their choices in today's information-saturated world. But 20% feel overloaded, and there are stresses for those with fewer pathways to the internet or who feel they are expected to do too much information gathering. Read More

  • The New Food Fights: U.S. Public Divides Over Food Science

    • December 1, 2016

    Differing views on benefits and risks of organic foods and GMOs as Americans report higher priority for healthy eating Read More

  • Gig Work, Online Selling and Home Sharing

    • November 17, 2016

    24% of Americans report earning money from the digital ‘platform economy’ in the past year. The extra income they make is a luxury for some, but a necessity for others. Read More