METHODS: Who's Not on the Net?

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Non-Adopters of the Internet Tend To Be Older, Poorer, and Less Educated Than Adopters

In 2019, the nonpartisan Pew Research Center conducted a study of U.S. residents who do not use the internet. Since the entire Death Penalty Study was conducted online, researchers felt it was an important limitation of the sample. According to Pew, about 10% of U.S. residents have not adopted internet use. Further, adoption of the internet is not equally distributed across all groups. As shown in the diagram, people who have adopted internet usage in large numbers are those 18 to 29 years old (nearly 100% adoption). People who have graduated from college also show high levels of internet adoption (98% adoption). People who enjoy an annual income of $75,000 or more are also high adopters of internet adoption (98%). Whites tend to have higher levels of adoption (92%) than Blacks (85%) or Latinos (86%). People who live in urban and suburban areas do not differ markedly, although suburbanites show the highest levels of internet adoption (94% adoption). People living in rural areas show lower levels of adoption (85% adoption).


The people least likely to have adopted internet usage are people with less than a high school education (only 71% are adopters), people 65 years old and older (only 73% are adopters), and those who earn annual incomes of less than $30,000 (82% are adopters). Men and women have roughly equal levels of internet adoption.


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