June 26, 2015

Americans’ Internet Access:
2000-2015

Survey Questions

The definition of an internet user in Pew Research Center surveys has evolved over time to account for changes in the technological landscape.

Prior to January 2005, internet users were defined as those who said “yes” to “Do you ever go online to access the Internet or World Wide Web or to send and receive email?”

From January 2005 through February 2012, internet users were defined as someone who said “yes” to either “Do you use the internet, at least occasionally?” or “Do you send or receive email, at least occasionally?”

From April 2012 to April 2013, internet users were defined as someone who said “yes” to at least one of three questions: “Do you use the internet, at least occasionally?” or “Do you send or receive email, at least occasionally?” or “Do you access the internet on a cell phone, tablet or other mobile handheld device, at least occasionally?”

From April 2013 to the present, internet users are defined as someone who said “yes” to either “Do you use the internet or email, at least occasionally?” or “Do you access the internet on a cell phone, tablet or other mobile handheld device, at least occasionally?”