What happens in an internet minute

This content was originally published by NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association.

The internet moves at a breakneck pace. Goods are constantly being purchased, pages updated, content released, videos streamed—and access to this online world requires a robust broadband connection. NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association represents nearly 850 small, rural broadband providers from across the country that work to ensure that their communities stay connected.

Recently, a graphic created by Lori Lewis, vice president of social media at Cumulus, has been circulating on several social media platforms. The striking graphic demonstrates the wide variety of activities happening on the global internet by quantifying some of the exchanges that take place every single “internet minute.”

According to Lewis, the data for the graphic is drawn from “quarterly earnings reports, consumer spending reports, public statistics from some of the platforms’ websites, etc.” Lewis, who works in radio, hoped to find a way to “quickly snapshot the magnitude of today’s distracted audience,” and to illustrate that not only radio but “every industry is battling like crazy for consumer bandwidth.” In today’s economy, in order to access consumers’ metaphorical bandwidth, companies must be online. And to access the resources they need to support their social lives, businesses, relationships, education and health, consumers must have literal bandwidth too.

Every minute on the internet:

  • 973,000 people log in to Facebook.
  • 481, 000 tweets are sent.
  • People watch 266,000 hours of Netflix content
  • 18 million text messages are sent.
  • Google responds to 3.7 million search inquiries.

Our activity on the internet ranges from the social to the political to the economic—and a reliable broadband connection enables it all.

That’s why the work of NTCA member companies is so critical. Currently, a large percentage of rural Americans cannot access “broadband” internet speeds, which deprives them of opportunities to participate in their local and global economies. Small, rural broadband providers across the country are working to change that reality—including the more than 150 NTCA member companies that have built broadband infrastructure capable of supporting gigabit speeds. Together with the support of Congress, the FCC and other broadband industry stakeholders, we can close the digital divide.