Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Opportunity For All

"Opportunity For All: How the American Public Benefits from Internet Access at US Libraries." US Impact Study / Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
America: Institute of Museum & Library Services, 2010.

The study was based on almost 50,000 telephone and Web form surveys. Highlights include:

  • 44% of those living below the poverty level access e-mail and the Web via their local public library. And nearly a third of Americans over 14 used library Internet services in 2009. That's about 77 million people.
  • 40% of those 2009 users accessed library Internet resources to find employment. 75% of these looked for a job online. Half posted their resume or filled out an online job application.
  • Another 37% researched some illness or medical problem, or searched for or made an appointment with a doctor.
  • 42% used their local library's Internet for education; over a third of these did their homework online. A big portion of these users were teenagers.
  • 60% accessed a library computer to contact someone else.