1. Are you addicted to the Internet? Why or why not? If so, how?
I suppose I am kind-of addicted – one of the first things I do every morning is check my email and I spend several hours a day browsing my bookmarks. But I can go a few days without internet access and not suffer withdrawal.
2. What aspect of the Internet do you find most appealing? Why?
Reading blogs is one of my favourite passtimes, as is editing at the ODP. I think it’s because I feel like I’m contributing something back to the internet at large, either in what I write on my blog or by helping to catalogue the millions of sites on the internet into useful categories.
3. What Internet features (i.e., sites, blogs, email, chat, etc.) do you participate in the most?
Probably blogs, and then email. I do get quite a bit of email (not including spam) every day, but I enjoy blogging and reading other people’s blogs – I usually add at least one new blog every week to my blogroll. I also like chatting on the ODP’s unofficial IRC channel since everyone there is as equally deranged as I am.
4. How did you get started online? At what point did you realize that you were hooked?
My parents got a new computer which had a built-in modem, and since ISPs were now offering pay-as-you-go internet (where you didn’t have to pay a set fee every month) we decided to give it a try. I think I realised my addiction when the phone bills started to come through, although after we got broadband we now pay a relatively low flat fee (£18 per month) and no call charges so it’s gone down since. I also pay a flat rate of £50 per year for dial-up internet in my room at university.
5. What is the longest amount of time you’ve gone without using the Internet?
2 and a half weeks, when I go on holiday. I set a personal challenge for myself to not use the internet while on holiday, and I’ve managed it 4 times so far for a minimum of two weeks. With all the spam, viruses and scams out there, sometimes it’s nice to get away from the internet for a while.