Uses and Gratifications from the Internet

The study was an attempt at assessing uses and gratification from Internet among students in Kerala. The study objectives sought to provide answers to questions such as what gratifications do they seek from Internet? Is the student population using this medium ritualistically to pass time, or instrumentally for education? Which of their socio demographic variables have a bearing on the gratifications sought? The analysis provided answers to these question and related aspects. Some of these findings are on expected lines, some are pointers to future trends, and their implications are thought provoking, especially in the light of increasing diffusion of Internet in Indian society. The study seeks to explore the gratifications sought from the internet. Survey method was used in this study. The study was confined to student community as teens and young adults are the most avid users of Internet. Kerala was chosen as study locale as it happens to be the most literate State in India with an even spread of educational facilities. To arrive at a representative student sample of Internet users in the state of Kerala, a total of 900 students were surveyed in the three districts; 300 each in Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, and Kozhikode districts respectively. The central focus of this investigation was to identify the diverse gratifications sought by students from Internet. The analysis factored six gratifications: (i) Pass time & habit, (ii) Social interaction, (iii) Entertainment, and (iv) Education (v) IT application, and (vi) Financial benefit. How would the six Internet gratifications sought compare across various demographic variables of students? Answer to this question formed the next objective of the study. Significant differences were noted based on demographic variables such as gender, location and level of education. A large majority of students are using Internet more for the ritualistic use of passing time and entertainment.

Download Pdf