The Tech Herald

Poll: Americans are fine with being online during sex and weddings

by Steve Ragan - Sep 16 2010, 13:00

Americans are fine with being online during sex and weddings. (Image: Dana Hanna)

A Harris Interactive poll, commissioned by PC Tools and dubbed the Keep Internet Security Simple (KISS) survey, listed some humorous responses to questions about when it is acceptable to be plugged into the Web, as well as some trends related to privacy.

The point of the PC Tools poll was to gauge consumer need as it related to security software usage and expectations. Naturally, consumers were worried about privacy, and as expected, said that they prefer simplicity when it comes to computer protection and maintenance.

However, when asked to give examples of when it was perfectly fine to be online, (using a computer, PDA, or other smart device) the respondents either had a killer sense of humor, or there are going to be some lonely people somewhere.

As the headline says, 22 percent of those who responded to the Harris Interactive poll said that it was ok to be plugged in (no pun intended, maybe) while having sex.

Further, 41 percent said it was ok to be online at the dinner table, 29 percent said it's ok while honeymooning, six percent said during a wedding (if this includes the alter, then it might also include divorce hearings. Then again, the video below says otherwise.), and 8 percent said at religious service.

In all seriousness, the responses to the privacy and maintenance part of the poll showed some interesting results. Internet usage is growing in America, and as people spend more time online, the need for, and expectation of, privacy is growing too.

An overwhelming majority of the respondents said that they want to keep files or documents on their computer and other connected devices private. By this, 39 percent were speaking about their children. Others mentioned their spouse or significant other (17 percent), co-workers (48 percent), boss (42 percent), and friends (40 percent).

According to PC Tools’ Stephanie Edwards, who shared the survey results with us, it was no surprise to see that many would be embarrassed if friends or family discovered certain files or documents on their systems, with men more concerned than women about others seeing the websites they have visited (18% vs. 12%, respectively).

During our talk she noted that nearly one in three Americans (32 percent) would be willing to risk downloading malicious files by visiting a potentially suspicious website or link.

Most adults said they would be tempted by a friend’s link or posting on a social network, gaming websites, pornography sites, entertainment gossip websites, gambling websites, and of course, websites featuring a naked celebrity.

When it comes to simplicity, the majority of respondents also said that they need ease of use.

PC Tools recently released their 2011 product line, which includes PC Tools Internet Security, Spyware Doctor with AntiVirus, Registry Mechanic, and a new release, PC Tools Performance Toolkit 2011.

The changes in the 2011 line focus on many of the usability and maintenance issues, even if they were only perceptions, which the survey respondents listed. Things like it is too complex, why it is needed, it’s too time consuming, or they just don’t want to be bothered, are each addressed by the new releases.

Those who would rather have a tooth removed or get a colonoscopy before attempting to defrag and clean their system’s registry, which were activities given as answers in the poll, will likely welcome the speed enhancements that come with using Performance Toolkit on Windows Vista.

We’ll be testing PC Tools in the lab. So we’ll have a review posted shortly. More information on the new releases can be seen here.


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