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We're all wasting time online: Pew Research Center finds most Internet users browse for no reason at all

Does Internetting for fun translate to a lack of purpose? Photo via

Are you sitting down? Because you're in for a shock: research shows that people go online for — gasp — no reason at all. Can you believe it? 

The Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project released a report on Friday proving that researchers spent an entire month wasting the time of 2,260 American adults to determine that now, more than ever, people are "going online just for fun and to pass the time."

In these days of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Wikipedia, LIFE photo archives, online books, news sites, YouTube, Vimeo, Hulu, online stock trading, blogs on everything from fashion to finances, gossip sites and gaming sites, dating sites and porno sites, etcetera, etcetera — the options for diversion are positively infinite.

 When asked whether they ever go online for no particular reason, 81 percent of adults 18 to 29 answered "yes."

 So it's actually surprising that only 53 percent of adults ages 18 to 29 answered in the affirmative to the question, "Did you go online yesterday for no particular reason, just for fun or to pass the time?"

When asked whether they ever go online for no particular reason, 81 percent of adults 18 to 29 and 53 percent of all respondents (18 to 65 and older) answered "yes." That's more like it.

Because if you're not online to browse your RSS feet, check notifications, discover the newest meme, catch up on the news or stalk celebs, what are you doing? Checking the weather? Mapping directions? Reading comprehensive annual reports or lengthy congressional bills? Pshaw.

According to Pew, the "question wording was simple and did not ask about any particular online 'fun' activity, so people were allowed to answer that they were online for fun however they defined the term." AP reported that the results signify that "many of us go online for no reason."

Whatever the definition, the entire premise of the survey seems sort of frivolous. Of course people will continue to see the Internet as a diversion and a destination. There is so much to be discovered online.

Tell us: Were you surprised by the results? Did you go online for a reason today or just to peruse? 

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