A few decades back, when the internet was not so popular, getting some minor information used to be among the most difficult tasks in the world. It was usual for people to phone all their contacts till they got the information they wanted. Sometimes people would even wait several days till they could personally visit those who they believed could provide them the information, and then after a bit of other small talk, try to get the information they wanted.
Getting information seemed to be an important activity, and this gave all kinds of people a feeling of self-importance knowing that they had some information which people might need. This probably made people contact each other a lot more often, in addition to the mere needs of socializing. Since people of all ages and backgrounds need all kinds of information, this need made society a more closely held group of people who were always interacting with each other for the purpose of either seeking information, or providing information.
The internet has changed all that. Now people do not need to ask anyone for any information. The search engine has replaced vast segments of society who were providers of information till yesterday. This has probably resulted in fewer phone calls, less fuel being burnt to zip across town in the car to get that information, and less time wasted in socializing in the real world for the purpose of seeking information. People simply need to access the internet through their computers, get to the search engine, and feed in their keywords – and all the information they could possibly need is just a click away.
The internet has thus not only provided a life-changing experience for people, but has also altered the manner in which society functions as a whole at a broad level. People who realize the power of the internet are often accused of having become social recluses and internet addicts. The addiction is understandable, since only the internet can fulfill their needs, not only for information, but also for socializing which is a lot easier now.