Grown-ups in Cyberspace, Long May They Rule takes

What a pleasure to learn that teens have not seized control of the Internet, as they have the rest of pop culture. According to a report by Jupiter Communications, teens “spend far less time online on average, in both number and length of sessions, than adults do.” Drawing on Media Metrix data, Jupiter says teens average 303 minutes online per month, versus 728 minutes for adults. “Although teens are early adopters and tend to experiment with new and innovative online products, winning their time and attention is becoming increasingly difficult.” Let this inspire us to hope the Internet will continue to be less juvenile than other media—indeed, that it will cater largely to the tastes of grown-ups. A study by Unilever looks at how Internet-oriented adults regard life in cyberspace. The chart excerpts its findings. Should marketers be pleased that so few people complain about “too much advertising”? It might just mean Internet users are so adept at ignoring online ads that those messages don’t rise to the level of a major annoyance. For 45 percent of women and 35 percent of men, e-mail is the “most useful” aspect of the Internet. Men were more likely than women (27 percent versus 19 percent) to say it’s most useful when they’re seeking “information on specific topics.”