Roughly ten million Brits still do not have an internet connection, according to the most recent reports.
An amazing figure that equates to one in six British citizens, particularly when you take into account the recent debates over the government's 'Digital Britain' report and plans to make sure everybody in the UK gets online by 2012.
The Guardian's Tim Adams interviewed a number of 'web refuseniks' to find out how their lives changed when they got online, while remembering his own first time of hooking up to the internet back in 1997 as being, "I guess, the closest most of my generation came to tuning in and turning on."
The results of his experiment are interesting, yet not particularly surprising. All four subjects expressed joy and pleasure at the many things they discovered they could do online to help them in their jobs and social and family lives.
Making emotional connections
Web evangelist Martha Lane Fox notes that it is "so easy for most of us to sit here and take the functions of a computer for granted, but for many people they are still entirely alien" adding that the introduction of a computer into somebody's life can still be a frightening and foreign experience for many.
Lane Fox stresses that the experience needs to be an emotional one, that the user can immediately relate to and feel fully at ease with "whether it is looking at photographs of grandchildren on Flickr or realising that Tesco will deliver your groceries to your door".
For more on Race Online 2012 check out the website at raceonline2012.org
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