Groundswell – Who Goes Online?

I just finished reading Groundswell (Harvard Business Press), and in the book, the authors provide some interesting statistics as they relate to if/how people participate in online social relationships.  Of course, this is of great interest to those of us involved in the worlds of spirituality, education and church!  The book’s overall Social Technographics Profile suggests that of the US adults who go online, the following percentages are evident:

  • Creators (those who publish/upload/etc)  –  18%
  • Critics (those who review/comments/etc)  –  25%
  • Collectors (those who add tags/vote/rss/etc)  –  12%
  • Joiners (those who visit social network sites)  –  25%
  • Spectators (those who read blogs/watch videos/listen/podcasts/etc)  –  48%
  • Inactives (those who do nothing social)  –  44%

(the percentages add up to more than 100% due to overlap)

So what does this mean?  For those of us who are blending spirituality with community in an online context, how do we interpret these numbers?  How do we determine what “success” is?

What are your thoughts and experiences?

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3 Replies to “Groundswell – Who Goes Online?”

  1. The internet is a wonderful place but i do agree that one can become consumed in all that it has to offer. Sarah maybe the trick is to get him out of there by engaging him in something new. Like a nice walk or something to that effect. At one time i was a computer junkie of sorts but now that i use it everyday at work by time i get home i find other things to engage myself. Mark i must say that i love what you are doing here with this site and i look forward to reading your new entries etc and it is unfortunate that more people do not take the time toi enjoy and comment on what you are building the great message that you are haring with all. You definately have caught my attention i hope that i can persuade some of my own family to have a look. Keep up the great work.

  2. I really appreciate your comments, Sarah, as I know that many other spouses will connect with what you are saying. And in part, that is what drives my passion to “redeem” online technology and use it for something positive, especially as it relates to Christian spirituality.

    For those of you who have struggled with the inappropriate use of online technology, how have you worked through it? Sometimes we go online to “escape” our day-to-day life, other times we try to create a “fantasy” world to live in. What have been your experiences?

  3. I guess this topic touches me close to my heart and home because my husband’s life is downstairs in the office in the dark in front of a computer playing an online game. He spends more time there than working and sleeping and definitely with us. I guess that’s his social network but it really sucks being on this end of things. It’s taking it’s toll on his mental and physical health and on us. Anyways, as much as technology can be cool it can also be pretty destructive (same as anything) if you let it be the leader of your life and the user of your time.

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