The Web Index measures the impact of Internet worldwide

Measuring the true reach of the Internet-related technologies is a difficult task to perform, a task that the World Wide Web Foundation is now trying to make easier with its new Web Index. The project aims at ranking how well the nations of the world are using the Web to improve their social, economical and political conditions and much more.

Presented by the Web inventor and creator of the World Wide Web Foundation Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the Web Index wants to be “the world’s first multi-dimensional measure of the Web’s growth, utility and impact on people and nations”, an analytical database which “covers 61 developed and developing countries, incorporating indicators that assess the political, economic and social impact of the Web, as well as indicators of Web connectivity and infrastructure”.

Berners-Lee introduced the Web Index during an event held in London: “I have spent most of my life with fellow geeks trying to make the web more powerful”, the Web creator said, “then I realised while we were making it more powerful only 20 percent of the world was using it”.

The Web Index for 2012 ranks Sweden at the first place for Internet usage, its social, economical, political impact and connectivity infrastructure. The second place is for the USA, where the Web is having a sensibly lower impact (91 against 100 of Sweden), the third is for the UK, then come Canada, Finland, Switzerland and so on.

Funded by Google, the Web Index also highlights critical situations where the Internet cannot be easily reached for cultural, economical and infrastructural issues: in Africa, the Index reveals, only one in six people is connected to the network.

“The high price of connectivity is stopping billions of people from achieving their right to knowledge and participation”, Sir Berners-Lee stated, so “costs have got to come down dramatically” if the entire world wants to adopt Internet as the universal medium it could be.


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