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.

Recent Work

September 1, 2021 Acknowledgments

This report is a collaborative effort based on the input and analysis of the following individuals. Find related reports online at pewresearch.org/internet. Primary researchers Colleen McClain, Research AssociateEmily A. Vogels, Research AssociateAndrew Perrin, Research AnalystStella Sechopoulos, Research AssistantLee Rainie, Director, Internet and Technology Research Research team Monica Anderson, Associate Director of Research Michelle Faverio, Research AnalystRisa Gelles-Watnick, Research Assistant Editorial and graphic design Margaret Porteus, Information […]

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September 1, 2021 Methodology

The American Trends Panel survey methodology Overview The American Trends Panel (ATP), created by Pew Research Center, is a nationally representative panel of randomly selected U.S. adults. Panelists participate via self-administered web surveys. Panelists who do not have internet access at home are provided with a tablet and wireless internet connection. Interviews are conducted in both […]

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September 1, 2021 2. Parents, their children and school during the pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the lives of families with school-age children in a major way. The coronavirus forced widespread school closings across the United States, and many parents had to work with their children to adjust to online learning.  This survey finds that 93% of parents with children in grades K-12 say their children have had some online […]

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September 1, 2021 The Internet and the Pandemic

Nine-in-ten Americans say the internet has been essential or important to them, many made video calls and 40% used technology in new ways. But while tech was a lifeline for some, others faced struggles.

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September 1, 2021 4. The role of technology in COVID-19 vaccine registration

In the early months of 2021, COVID-19 vaccines began to roll out and the public was thrust into a vaccine registration system that was sometimes characterized in the media as confusing and competitive. Vaccination registration terminology Several terms are used in this chapter to describe people based on whether or not they had tried to sign themselves up for a […]

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September 1, 2021 3. Navigating technological challenges

With increased demands placed on home internet connections and the nation’s internet infrastructure during the pandemic, the quality and affordability of home internet connections became a focus for users on several fronts. About half of U.S. broadband users say they have struggled with their connections, and roughly three-in-ten upgraded their connections during the pandemic. Some […]

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September 1, 2021 1. How the internet and technology shaped Americans’ personal experiences amid COVID-19

As the pandemic unfolded in spring 2020, many Americans saw their lives swiftly reshaped by stay-at-home orders, school closures and the onset of remote work. From video calls with isolating or sick family members to holiday celebrations by video call amid canceled travel plans, social distancing recommendations altered major life events and elements of daily life alike.  Technology bridged physical distance as restrictions […]

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June 16, 2021 3. Cross-cutting and novel statements

A number of the respondents wrote about cross-cutting themes, introduced novel ideas or shared thoughts that were not widely mentioned by others. This section features a selection of that material. Questions about AI figure into the grandest challenges humans face Michael G. Dyer, professor emeritus of computer science at UCLA, expert in natural language processing, […]

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