Ego Surfing Occupies Nearly Half The Web

    December 17, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

A new study from the Pew Internet & American Life Project said 47 percent of Internet users search for a topic very close to them: themselves. 

The 47 percent scouring page after page of search results for their names sounded a little low to us, even though that figure more than doubles the 22 percent Pew Internet who admitted to self-search five years ago. Doesn’t every do this?

Pew Internet

Apparently not. According to Pew Internet, the likelihood of ego surfing increases when the user is under 50, or has a higher education or income than the norm.

Neither gender does more vanity searching than the other. Men and women self search in equal numbers, with the number increasing with the person’s success in life.

The type of information people have online varies. Pew Internet said few of the respondents have their cellphone numbers, political affiliation, or videos of themselves online.

About a third of the survey group said their email address, home address and phone number, and employer are online. In an age where identity theft happens with alarming frequency, details like the home address and phone number may be best left offline.

But people don’t seem too worried about it. Pew’s survey found 61 percent of Internet users aren’t that worried about limiting what can be found out about them in a search engine. Only 38 percent actively took steps to reduce this information.

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