Internet population hits one billion, or 15% of world population


Internet stat-tracker ComScore has just announced that it reckons that world internet usage topped 1 billion in December 2008, 14.9% of the estimated population of the world in July 08. Asia-Pacific, including China, sent the most users, followed by Europe, followed by North America. However, the USA comes second in the ranking by country, with the UK in fifth.

Interestingly the stats don’t include access from public computers, like Internet Cafes, or access from mobile phones. In reality, therefore, the figure’s likely to be considerably higher. 77% of the world uses Google to search, which is a massive figure, and Wikipedia is fifth in the most-viewed-websites list, with 27% of the world visiting it. Facebook sits in seventh.

Press Release (via TheNextWeb)

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Female players now make up about 40% of the MMO population


How convenient. Just yesterday, I was railing against stereotypes of virtual world inhabitants. Today, out pops a survey stating that those stereotypes couldn’t be further off the mark. Players of EverQuest II were recruited in game and asked to fill out a web-based questionnaire.

The findings? Most of the “hardcore” players are female, gamers are healthier than average, and game-playing is becoming a more social activity. Some other interesting results came out – the rate of bisexuality among female players is five times the national average, and whereas male players’ goal was often to “win” and complete things, female gamers were more interested in the social aspects of the hobby.

Just as computing, and console gaming are now seen as gender-neutral activities, so will MMOs and virtual worlds be in the coming years. In the meantime, don’t necessarily expect that massive orc warrior in your dungeon to be a bloke.

(via BBC)

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