Internet kui infoallikas - kasutaja vaade
Information possesses a great meaning in information society. Holding information gives a big advantage to its enjoyer as opposed to non-enjoyers. Internet is undoubtfully becoming a very important information channel. This work is a research about Estonian Internet users, their behaviour, attitude and skills when looking and receiving information from the Internet. While the Internet is becoming a more important information source with every day, this research is looking at the Estonians’ attitude towards the Internet. This work is important because it is the first Internet-thematic research in Estonia based on qualitative interviews. This survey was realized by 4-membered group in composition of Marko Paloveer, Piret Reiljan, Urmas Rosenbeg and Kristiina Tagel. There were 16 interviews carried out, nine with male subjects and seven with females. Our survey is based on another research called „Mina. Maailm. Meedia“ which took place in year 2002. There were six Internet user types found as a result of this survey. They were versatile, interactive user; multiple information user; communicator; private-life-centred services user; participator; small-scale user. Present work consists of the review of theoretical and empirical bases of information theories, digital divide and digital inequality; the description on research-method; presentation of the respondents; description of the results of empirical survey and discussion of the main implications. There were some main empirical results. 1. People look for information mainly using the search engines, the most popular ones are Neti and Google. 2. Almost all respondents use the Internet at least once a day. 3. The most popular topics looked for were news, travelling and health information. The Internet is also considered helpful when looking for a job. 4. Two thirds of the respondents consider the Internet as a very important information source. 5. The main preclusions when aquiring information from the Internet were a scarce command of language and lack of specific materials. 6. Most of the respondents do not trust information with unknown background, for example information from newspaper comments or forums. They only trust certain web pages. For instance newspapers itself, bank pages and the home page of Departement of the Treasury. When looking at all the theoretical and empirical data, it is important to remember that they are not absolutely pertain to anybody. The purpose of this work was to go deep with Internet users’ thoughts and attitudes and the results are not meant to be carried over to all the Internet users. This work certainly gives various ideas to continue the survey. For example one possible expansion is to concentrate on only one Internet user type found as a result of the survey „Mina. Maailm. Meedia“.