More US Internet users seek online help for life decisions

More US Internet users seek online help for life decisions


Some 45% of US Internet users, equating to around 60m people, went online for help to make important life decisions, according to a survey from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, a non-profit group.

The survey asked 2,201 US adults in March 2006 whether the Internet had played a crucial or important role in making at least one of eight major life decisions.

An estimated 21m people used the Internet when looking for more career training, while 17m went online to help another person with a major illness, or select a school for a family member.

Some 16m people used the Internet when buying a car or making a financial decision or major investment, while around 10m used it to find a new home, 8m when changing jobs and 7m when dealing with a major illness or health condition.

The number of Internet users going online to help make major life decisions represents an increase from the 40% of Internet users who responded to the same survey questions in 2002.

The Pew Internet & American Life Project said the survey results demonstrate the Internet is becoming increasingly important to users in the US for making decisions such as finding a new home, or seeking a college for their child. It believes the convenience of broadband combined with improved online content and increasingly advertised web sites have contributed to the increase.

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