Internet gap between black, white seniors

January 6, 2014
An elderly woman checks out a laptop computer at an apple store in Bethesda, Maryland, on May 12, 2010

African Americans over the age of 65 are much less likely to spend time online than their white counterparts, according to a study released on Monday.

The Pew Internet and American Life Project survey found that just 45 percent of black seniors are users, compared to 63 percent amongst whites.

The study of "African Americans and Technology Use" also found only 30 percent of black seniors had broadband Internet access, compared to 51 percent of whites.

Overall, US blacks continue to lag behind whites in terms of Internet use and access to high-speed broadband at home.

Some 87 percent of whites go on the Internet, compared to 80 percent of African Americans, while 74 percent of whites had broadband at home compared to 62 percent for blacks.

The study, which analyzed findings from 6,010 American adults including 664 who identify as African American, found a greater parity amongst younger web users however.

Young, college-educated, and higher income blacks were just as likely to use the Internet and have broadband at home.

The survey found African Americans were flocking to micro-blogging site Twitter in greater numbers. Some 22 percent of blacks online use Twitter, compared to 16 percent of whites.

Twitter had also cast a spell on younger African American . Forty percent of blacks between 18 and 29 use Twitter, compared to only 28 percent of whites in the same bracket.

Explore further: Facebook dominates in US rush to social networking

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