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Video clip synopsis – Trevor Barr links the rise in Internet users with the change in lifestyle practices of television audiences.
Year of production - 2005
Duration - 2min 1sec
Tags - design, emerging technologies, innovation, Internet, technology, technology and society, see all tags


World Internet Project

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About the Video Clip


This interview with Trevor Barr was recorded for the website From Wireless to Web, produced in 2005.

Trevor Barr is an author, professor and the Director of the Creative Industries Research & Applications Centre at the Queensland University of Technology. You can view his full biography at From Wireless to Web

The website is a selective history of broadcast media in Australia. Decade by decade, from radio and newsreels to TV and the internet, this history shows how the Australian broadcast media developed and shaped the way Australians see themselves.

From Wireless to Web is a Film Australia production in association with Roar Film.

Curriculum Focus


This Module can be used to achieve some of the outcomes of the NSW Information and Software Technology Years 7–10 syllabus; specifically the following outcomes:
5.4.1: A student analyses the effects of past, current and emerging information and software technologies on the individual and society.

This material is an extract. Teachers and students should consult the Board of Studies website for more information.

Background Information


The World Internet Project is a collaborative project involving universities and research organisations in many countries. In 2004 the project published its first study on the Internet, shattering the 'computer geek’ image. Journalist Bernard Warner reported that:

“The typical Internet user, far from being a geek, shuns television and actively socialises with friends, according to the study. It presents an image of the average 'netizen’ that contrasts with the stereotype of the loner who spends hours on the Internet and rarely engages with the real world.

“Instead, the typical Internet user is an avid reader of books and spends more time engaged in social activities than the non-user,” the report says. Also, television viewing is down among some Internet users by as much as five hours per week compared with Net abstainers.

“Use of the Internet is reducing television viewing around the world while having little impact on positive aspects of social life”, says Jeffrey Cole, director of the UCLA Centre for Communication Policy, the California university that organised the project. “Most Internet users generally trust the information they find online”, he says.

“The findings are derived from surveys of Internet and non-Internet users in 14 countries: the United States, Britain, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Japan, Macao, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, China and Chile.” (Warner)

Classroom Activities

  1. Research and discuss the benefits that the World Internet Project has to politicians and to business as a planning tool.
    1. Why is it important for Australia to be involved in the World Internet Project?
  2. USC Annenberg’s 2005 Digital Future Project found that “if forced to give up technology, Internet users would hang on to the web – and would drop their television and cell phones first”. Furthermore the top 10 Internet uses for 2005 were: “email, general web surfing, reading news, shopping, entertainment news (searching and reading), seeking information about hobbies, online banking, medical information (searching and reading), instant messaging, and seeking travel arrangements and travel information”.
    1. As a class, develop a survey about computer and in particular Internet use. Consider such issues as types of activities, preferred activities, when the activities are undertaken, length of time spent on activities, what activities did computer/Internet use replace. Remember to record such information as the gender, age, type of internet access of your interviewees.
    2. Create a class spreadsheet or database of everyone’s survey results and analyse the data. How does it compare to the published reports on the World Internet Project website.

Further Resources


Go to From Wireless to Web for more about the history of broadcast media in Australia.

Go to Australian Policy Online

Go to Swinburne University of Technology, Institute for Social Research

Go to USC Annenberg School Center for the Digital Future, Digital Future Report 2005

Go to World Internet Project