Survey finds fear, anxiety accompany forced Internet unplugging

According to a new report released by Tata Communications, one in four Americans admit they wouldn't survive more than five hours without using the Internet in their daily life.
Written by Natalie Gagliordi, Contributor

It's fairly common knowledge that Americans have a serious dependency on the Internet. But according to a new report released today by Tata Communications, that dependency is accompanied by some intense psychological and physical repercussions. 

In its "Connected World II" global survey, Tata Communications found that one in four Americans admit they wouldn't survive more than five hours without using the Internet in their daily life, and more than half (54 percent) admitted feelings of fear, anger and anxiety when forced to unplug.

What's even more concerning (or simply amusing) is that most of those afflicted with Internet addiction have little to no knowledge of how the thing works. Only half of the survey respondents accurately identified network connected datacenters as the place where the Internet resides.

Most respondents also believe that the Internet is infinite, while 70 percent believe that everyone owns the Internet. Only 16 percent actually indicated and understanding of geo-control and other insights that fuel the debate on net neutrality.

There are also a bevy of activities people are willing to throw to the wayside in favor of Internet usage, such as TV time and alcohol. But there's at least one pleasure that does take precedence: Sex.

Sex sits as the last thing US respondents are willing to give up for time online, with just 5 percent of 45-65 year olds embracing the Internet over intimacy. 

"Far-reaching changes in human behavior and people's use of the Internet are requiring even more access to bandwidth heavy activities such as two-way video, connectivity for wearable computers, the advent of the personal drone device, and even more promising uses for the Internet of Things," said Julie Woods-Moss, CMO of Tata Communications, in a statement. "We believe a better understanding is likely to improve the appreciation of the Internet and its capabilities leading to new and innovative ways to incorporate digital resources into our daily activities."

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