a different side of Israel

Web World: 71% of All Israelis Surf the Internet

By Maurice Picow

Internet in IsraelIt’s not the Beach Boys, but the Internet that seems to be the most popular thing in most Israeli homes nowadays. A recent survey conducted by the marketing survey firm TIM, part of TNS Tele-Survey, reveals that nearly 71% of all households in Israel are connected to the WEB. The study went on to show that of the ones who ‘surf’ regularly, 55% of men and 45% are women. Median ages of these web surfers are 30-49; and after age 50, the percentage drops off considerably (25% for those over 50). The study also indicates that education and financial circumstance also play an important role in who surfs the internet as well as which ‘on-line’ connections they use.

The survey firm, which also conducts similar studies in the USA, indicates that the higher the ‘surfer’ rises on the educational and financial success ‘ladder’ the more likely he or she will avail themselves to the marketing of products and services offered by obliging on-line companies offering everything from e-books, music, entertainment, airline tickets and vacation packages, to health products and even prescription drugs. Even more bizarre types of web marketing hype, especially for the male gender, can offer everything from penis enlargement ‘patches’ to Viagra and its generic derivatives, to potions guaranteed to make members of the opposite sex literally go crazy over some kind of ‘sex scent’ similar to that emitted by some animals (after all, we humans are animals when it comes down to the real nitty gritty).

The internet server company of choice is also determined by educational and financial clout. Folks more interested in simple pleasures and less in politics and long term investment strategies are more likely to click onto sites like Nana, YNet and similar ones offering things more appealing and less controversial to their ultra egos. After all, who wants to get bogged down in company quarterly financial progress reports or which political party gets a bigger share of the governmental budget ‘pie’. One can be connected to a site offering more sublime information such as which rock stars will be appearing next at Hayarkon Park in Tel Aviv or Sultan’s Pool in Jerusalem. Even the email servers people use, whether from internet saavy firms like NetVision, or from the country’s still monopolistic oriented telephone company (Bezeq) which now claims to offer the best internet connection service (Bezeq Net) as well as the best cable TV programming network (HOT); with the one intention of endeavoring to keep it’s customers from choosing another alternative (if that’s not monopolistic, then pray tell me what is?).

Poor people, who are barely trying to get by on minimum salaries, and who have not gone up the educational ladder (especially those from certain ethnic groups) are least likely to ‘surf” and more inclined to engage in activities that once a larger segment of the population used to do, such as sit on their balconies, eating sun flower seeds or watermelon (depending on the season) and watching programs like “Yatzpan”, or Candid Camera (Israeli style) on the tube. Let all that high tech web jazz be done by those people driving their neat lease cars to work at Amdocs, etc.

1 Comment

  1. Great stuff! I’m going out today to change who I surf with!

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