Civic involvement has long been dominated by those with high levels of income and education, leading some advocates to hope that online access might alter this pattern. But this report shows that the internet is not changing the socio-economic character of civic engagement in America.
When it comes to online activities such as contributing money, contacting a government official or signing an online petition, the wealthy and well-educated continue to lead the way.
Still, there are hints that the new forms of civic engagement anchored in blogs and social networking sites could alter long-standing patterns. Some 19% of internet users have posted material online about political or social issues or used a social networking site for some form of civic or political engagement. And this group of activists is disproportionately young.