Annual Center for the Digital Future Internet Survey Finds Growing Impact of Online Communities

 The seventh annual Internet survey conducted by the Center for the Digital Future at the USC Annenberg School for Communication has found profound social impact produced by growing participation in online communities.

The Digital Future Project found that membership in online communities has more than doubled in only three years.

  • 54% of online community members log into their community at least once a day
  • 71% of members said their community is very important or extremely important to them
  • 56% of members reported meeting their online counterparts in person

The study found that participation in online community membership has particularly dramatic effects on participation in social causes. Three-quarters of online community members said they use the Internet to participate in communities related to social causes, with 40% saying that they use the Internet at least monthly to participate in such communities. Eighty-seven percent of online community members are participating in social causes that are new to them since their involvement in online communities began.

And, a large and growing percentage of members — now 55% — say they feel as strongly about their online communities as they do about their real-world communities.

For more, visit the Center for Digital Future website.