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Could You Choose Between Alcohol and the Internet?

A surprising new report on global internet dependence reveals what addictions people would give up for the web.


The survey revealed powerful, potent figures
you can probably smell from the next room.
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By Bryan Le


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What would you give up if it meant you could keep checking Facebook or googling your name? Driving? Alcohol? Sex? The Boston Consulting Group decided to find out just how web-dependent people are, surveying 1,000 people from every G-20 country and asking what “lifestyle habit” they would be willing to give up for a year if it meant they could keep the Internet. Turns out almost 75% of Americans claim they would kick chocolate, alcohol or coffee for unfettered access to their precious wideband portal. And 21% say they'd give up sex, but that number should probably go up to 28% to account for the 7% who would quit bathing. Most other countries hold the internet at the same priority level as Americans, with a couple surprising exceptions: Japanese are twice as likely to give up sex as Americans—a whopping 56%; Brazilians, on the other hand, are only half as likely as Americans to do the same. The BCG has revealed just how much the world wants to stay online, which poses an interesting philosophical question for each of us to ask ourselves about our priorities: is showering really worth it?

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