Tuesday, March 04, 2008

BPN 1027 Internet skills Dutch average, according to CBS

The Dutch like to tap themselves on the back when another ranking puts them in the lead. Of course they had an early start with consumer internet from 1994 onwards. But in comparison with other European countries their internet skills rank average.

Of the 16,4 million Dutch inhabitants, 11 million use internet. Almost everyone (95 per cent) uses a search engine to find information. And 86 per cent knows how to use e-mails and forward e-mails with attachments. But when it comes to chatrooms, news groups, skyping and sharing music or movies, the user group decreases to 30 per cent. And only two out of ten internet users can design a webpage on their own.

Internet users between 65 and 75 years of age are less active on the internet than youngsters between 12 and 25 years of age. Senior internet users used internet to find information or to e-mail in 2007. Youngsters use internet to chat (54 per cent), skype or msn (50 per cent) or share music or movies (57 per cent).

The Netherlands ranks high when it comes to internet facilities. And in 2007 one in seven internet users was very versatile with internet. But despite the fact that the number of internet users with skills has doubled over the last two years, the skills are just above average, compared to the rest of the European Union. It puts the Netherlands in thirteenth position. The conclusion is that the availability of internet facilities does not run parallel with the development of internet skills. The same phenomenon can be seen in Germany and Belgium. However, in Estland and Finland one in three internet users have high internet skills. In Ireland and Cyprus only 5 per cent of the users are highly skilled.

More than 80 per cent of the internet users learn the skills by self study. Two of three internet users are helped by their family, friends and colleagues. Internet users with few internet skills would like to participate in a course. Education does influence the skills. Users with a basic education keep themselves busy with sharing music and movies. Young internet users with a higher education more easily design a webpage. Only two per cent of seniors have ever designed a web page; only four per cent of them share music and movies.

Update 05/04/2008: These were the conclusions in the Dutch press release of the Dutch Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS). I went back to the original research results collated by Eurostat and got a complete different impression. Eurostat designed eight skills as checkpoints:
- Use a search engine to find information
- Send email with attached files
- Keep viruses, spyware, computer
- Find, download and install software
- Messages to chat rooms, newsgroups or online discussion
- Use Internet to make phone calls
- Peer-to-peer file sharing for movies, music
- Create a web page
Totalling the results of these eight skills per country and dividing them by eight offered a complete different ranking arises.

EU27 less Malta
1. Romania: 10,37
2. Greece: 15
3. Cyprus: 15,12
4. Bulgaria: 16,62
5. Ireland: 20,62
6. Poland: 20,87
7. Czech Republic: 21,62
8. Lithuania: 24
9. Italy: 22,12
10. Latvia: 25,25
11. Hungary 25,25
12. Belgium: 27,75
13. Spain: 27,87
EU27 less Malta: 28,25
14. Slovenia: 28,50
15. UK: 32
16. Austria: 32
17. France: 34,37
18. Estland: 35
19. Sweden: 36,12
20. Germany: 36,25
21. Finland: 38
22. Netherlands: 43,50
23. Denmark: 44,12
24. Luxembourg: 44,37
25. Norway: 45,87
26. Iceland: 47

Source: Eurostat 23/2007

Blog Posting Number: 1027


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