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Report finds Latinos who read English more apt to be online

LatinaLista — It seems like every other month there’s a new report about Latinos and the Internet. The vast majority of the research suggests that Latinos are closing the digital divide, especially when it comes to using mobile devices to do it.

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The Pew Hispanic Center is the latest to release a report confirming that more and more Latinos are using the Internet. The Pew Hispanic report, Latinos Online, 2006-2008: Narrowing the Gap, found that Internet usage among Latino adults increased by 10 percentage points compared to only four percentage points among whites and two percentage points among blacks.

Because so many Latinos rely on cell phones, the authors of the report confess that the report’s findings may underestimate the increases in Internet use for Latinos. However, there were some other findings that proved to be less indisputable:

Among Latinos, English-reading ability was linked with internet use– 81% of Latinos who read English very well were online, as compared with 63% of Latinos who read pretty well, 52% of Latinos who don’t read English well, and 24% of Latinos who can’t read English at all.

Conversely, Spanish-reading ability was not associated with internet use at all among Latinos.

Among Latinos ages 18 to 34, 77% used the internet; among those ages 35 to 49 65% used the internet; among those ages 50 to 64, 53% used the internet, and among Latinos ages 65 and older, one-quarter used the internet.

Among internet users, 64% of Latinos lacking a high school degree had a home internet connection in 2008, as compared with 84% of Latino high school graduates, and 94% of Latino college graduates.

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