Pew reported Wednesday that 26 million Americans, or 19 percent of adult Web users, said they went online for news or information about politics on a typical day in August. That proportion is comparable to the 18 percent of adult U.S. Web users that sought political information online in November of 2004, in the days leading up to the last presidential election.
In July of 2002, just 11 million Americans--or 13 percent of Web users--said they got political information on the Web on a typical day.
Pew proposed that increased broadband use was a major factor behind the increased reliance on the Web from 2002 to now. "Having a home broadband connection tends to draw users to the internet for their information needs," stated the report.
Also, there's more high-quality political information available online now than four years ago. "More attractive internet content about politics--from established news organizations, campaigns, independent media, and interested citizens--may have drawn more users to the Web for this information," stated the report.
For the study, Pew surveyed 1,021 adult Web users in August.