Survey: The Internet has had a negative impact on morality, good for education and relationshipsBy Shawn Knight 19 comments
The Internet is a lot of things to a lot of people and is generally considered by those in developed nations that actively use it to be an integral and positive aspect of life. But what about those who are just now coming online? The landscape of the Internet looks vastly different today than it did many years ago when most of us first hit the web. Do today's newcomers see it in a positive light?
A new study from Pew Research polled residents in 32 emerging and developing nations about the influence that the Internet is having on their society. Of those questioned, 42 percent said the net has had a bad influence on morality while 30 percent provided the same answer as it relates to politics.
Of all the individual countries polled, none said the Internet has had a positive influence on morality.
The Internet isn't totally evil, however, as an overwhelming 64 percent of respondents believe it has had a good influence on education. Similarly, 53 percent said it has influenced personal relationships in a positive matter while 52 percent said the same about the impact on the economy.
Unsurprisingly, survey takers' answers were heavily influenced on whether or not they actually use the Internet. For example, 65 percent of Internet users in a survey of 31 emerging and developing nations (Pakistan was not included due to insufficient sample size) believe the Internet has had a positive influence on personal relationships. Among non-Internet users, that figure is 21 percent lower at just 44 percent.
Whether they like it or not, the Internet will be arriving in many unconnected regions in the years to come thanks to efforts like Google's Project Loon and Facebook's Internet.org initiative.