05/07/2007 - The advent of Web 2.0 - the ability of people to use a range of information and communication technology as a platform to express themselves online and participate in the commons of cyberspace - is often heralded as the next phase of the information society. Yet little is known about which segments of the population are inclined to make robust use of information technology and which aren't.
With that in mind, the Pew Internet & American Life Project conducted a survey designed to classify Americans into different groups of technology users. We developed our typology along three dimensions of people's relationship to information and communications technology (ICT):
Assets: We asked people about their use of the internet, cell phones and other devices that connect to the internet (e.g., video or digital cameras). We also asked about their use of services that facilitate digital consumption, participation, and electronic communication (e.g., broadband and non-voice applications on cell phones).
Actions: We asked about activities in which people engage, such as downloading audio and video, generating their own online content, and a variety of things they do with their cell phones and computers. We also asked about frequency of online use.
Attitudes: We asked how people see ICTs helping them to be more productive at work, to pursue hobbies, and to keep up with family and friends; we also solicited their views about information overload and technology's capacity to offer more control over their lives.
Take the Typology Test! on the Pew Internet & American Life Project Web site.