Swedes and the Internet: A new report out on how the pandemic is affecting our digital lives and use of digital services

“In Sweden in 2020, digitalisation has had to show what it’s good for, and the internet has been an invaluable help during the pandemic. Thanks to the internet, we have been able to keep in touch during social distancing, buy food and experience cultural events without risk of infection. We have worked and studied at a distance, but digital life has not been the same for everyone.”

You can find an English summary here: The Swedes and the Internet 2020 - Summary | Svenskarna och internet

And the full report in Swedish here: Svenskarna och internet 2020 | Internetstiftelsen

I think it’s interesting how they organised it, they picked the following themes:

  • Use of Internet and Screen time
  • Working from Home
  • Digital healthcare services
  • E-commerce and payment solutions
  • Digital integrity and internet scams
  • Media consumption - Watching, listening and reading
  • Social media
  • Digital communication services
  • Online Education
  • Digital Behaviours
  • Some key facts and figures

I’m curious if these patterns are more or less the same in other countries - does any of this resonate with you?


From reports of friends who work as teachers or government employes in Germany, I can report that in Germany the lack of effort in digitalisation is having a bad impact right now.

For example:

  • Schools that can not go to digital learning because:

    1. They do not have the know-how and tools
    2. Some of the villages the students come from still do not have a reliable Internet connection (!!!)
  • Government employees having to “share” a limited amount of laptops during the home office for a month. Meaning having to travel to each other homes every other week to hand over the laptop.

1 Like

Stand out for me is this class divide, half mentioned during the article?

Thanks for this report featuring the Swedish online experience during the pandemic. A few significant issues were not captured at all in the summary: 1. The rise of domestic violence due to physical inactivity, having to work at home and not being able to spend quality time with family due to increased screen time; 2. The screen-time and isolation leading to declining mental well-being in younger people, mostly uni-students with increased workloads as well as white-collar workers; 3. The advent of tech companies and increased surveillance measures by states (the pandemic being the excuse) causing harm on people’s digital privacy, 4. Definitely the class divide in digital realm as @thom_stewart mentioned, and also the increasing gaps in digital divide in general …These apply pretty much to all nations with varying degrees. Maybe the longer report in Swedish already covers some of these issues.

1 Like