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Internet use increasing among seniors

Jan. 29, 2009 at 11:31 AM

WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- A growing number of U.S. senior citizens, particularly those in the 70-75 age range, are taking part in online activities, a Washington think tank says.

The Pew Research Center said in a release Wednesday that 45 percent of respondents aged 70 to 75 taking part in a series of recent surveys between 2006 and 2008 said they are currently active on the Internet.

That percentage represents a marked increase in the age demographic. Only 26 percent of 2005 survey respondents aged 70-75 acknowledged taking part in online activities.

The center's Internet & American Life Project surveys also found that the most popular online activity for Internet users above the age of 64 was e-mailing.

The surveys indicated 74 percent of those senior Internet users routinely send and receive e-mail.

Teenage Internet users focus their online efforts on games and social networking, the center said.

The surveys, whose total number of respondents and margin of error were not reported, said 78 percent of respondents aged 12-17 take part in online gaming compared with the 73 percent of the demographic that reported e-mailing on a consistent basis.

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