There are things that engage you. Movies, books, Internet... Today students can hardly imagine that a few years ago, essays were written by hand, as well as cribs. Moldova ends the international lists in many respects, but it's definitely not for the Internet. According to international experts, our country is one of the most "connected" to the Internet which is offering affordable and high quality Internet access.
As the data in the population survey, 44% of the population of Moldova over the age of 14 years is using the Internet. Among the residents of Chisinau, the figure reaches 61%, while in rural areas it is almost twice less - 34%.
Teens cannot imagine their life without web browsers, social networking and online games while the older people use the virtual space with the help of their children. They get accustomed with the idea of "Facebook friends" and are gradually beginning to read the news in online editions. Of course, the age pyramid of Internet users is different from the whole country picture. Therefore, 72% of users are young people of 14-34 years old.
Fig. 1 Differences in the age structure of population, in general, and Internet users in particular,%
It is easy to guess that the most visited Internet resource are social networks - 85% of Internet users from our country are registered at least on one social network. The same rate was noticed in the case of search engines. This is followed by YouTube (70%), email (65%), news sites (56%). Blogs belong to the interests of a small group of people - 17%.
As you know, the most trusted by consumers source of information about products and services, is the recommendation of their friends and close acquaintances, however advertising plays an important role too, although it may be more informative than persuasive. The Internet is not so much a means as an alternative reality in which you can find recommendations (on forums), video advertising (in video commercials), informative articles about products and much more. We go shopping a lot - almost every day we buy food, a little less often we buy household chemicals. For these acquisitions, the need for additional information is minimal. At the same time, there are products that we buy less frequently. In this category are the expensive goods - household appliances, cars, expensive phones. Every second Internet user accesses this information source in the search for a desired product. 41% have resorted to Internet usage for buying clothes and shoes. A third of women are searching for online information about cosmetics. Every fourth user accesses the Internet for details on travel issues.
Fig. 2 Products sought on Internet for an eventual purchase, %
Attempting to describe what looks like a typical Internet user we cannot forget that this is a young man. This explains the fact that every second user is a single person, 42% - married. The share of Internet users gradually increases with the increase of the level of education. Indeed, it is difficult to imagine an educated person who does not use the Internet. 52% - do not work, 35% are pupils or students. As for how these people are socially active, we can see that they are the same as the whole population. They do not like to read books, do not often go to the theater, cinema and are rarely in for sports. Sadly, the Internet does not contribute to a brighter personal manifestation in real life.
The study identified three key segments of Internet users - the TV generation that listens to the greatest extent to the information from this source, including to advertising. These are the older people. Internet for them represents, first of all, social networks and Skype. In contrast, you can take the segment of a virtual generation of young people who like online advertising. They are versatile Internet users, not limited to social networks. Of course, they have a computer connected to the Internet at home. The last segment of "hybrid generation" is temporary. They are young middle-aged people who are not so enthusiastically looking at the online features. They are more critical. It is possible that in a fairly short time the representatives of this segment would split in the other two categories depending on the level of education and on how socially active they are.
Fig. 3 Segmentation of Internet users, %
As for the technical means by which users access the Internet, of course, mobile phones are becoming more spread, but still using an ordinary computer for this purpose is much more convenient. 61% of the urban and 39% of the rural population have a desktop computer or a laptop. Despite the fact that Moldova is classified as a developed country in terms of the Internet, yet the main reason for buying a computer is its absence. Those who already have a computer, use it as long as it still could be turned on. Those who have a computer, but also intend to buy a new one, do this primarily because of its physical aging - 22%, obsolescence leads to the purchase of a new computer for only 10% of respondents.
Internet has brought into our lives very many positive things, but has added problems too. The English novelist E. M. Forster portrayed a world automatic system that serves humanity in a fiction tale, written in 1909. People are becoming dependent on it, gradually degrading physically and are living almost isolated and alone in their apartments, communicating only virtually. When the system has crashed and stopped, all of them have died. This story predicts a potential problem associated with the Internet - an advanced Internet addiction. How likely is it that this prediction will come true? The more time we spend in virtual reality, the less time remains on the real life. Sometimes you just get tired of the abundance of information so that only you can find the right balance between reality and virtual space.