The internet has become increasingly important to users in their everyday lives. It is also the case that for many of online Americans, the internet has become a crucial source of information at major moments and milestones in their lives.

PEW/Internet's surveys show that 45% of internet users, or about 60 million Americans, say that the internet helped them make big decisions or negotiate their way through major episodes in their lives in the previous two years.

To explore this phenomenon, PEW/Internet fielded the Major Moments Survey in March 2005, that repeated elements of an earlier January 2002 survey. Comparison of the two surveys revealed striking increases in the number of Americans who report that the internet played a crucial or important role in various aspects of their lives.

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