Date of this Version
Nebraska Rural Poll: A Research Report, no. 18 (July 1, 2018). Also available at http://ruralpoll.unl.edu.
The proportion of rural Nebraskans accessing the Internet using their cell phone has increased compared to two years ago. But, the proportion subscribing to high-speed Internet service at home remained stable during the past two years. Persons living in or near the smallest communities are less likely than persons living in or near larger communities to have high-speed Internet service at home.
Not many rural Nebraskans report significant limitations from their home Internet service on their ability to do most tasks. At least one in ten report being limited significantly or not being able to play real time video games or stream online video content such as Netflix. However, persons living in or near smaller communities experience more limitations than do those living in or near larger communities. And, regional differences also occur, with the residents of both the Northeast and Southeast regions experiencing more limitations performing such tasks as streaming online video content, playing real time video games and videoconferencing.
Most rural Nebraskans are using the Internet to save money by price matching, finding bargains online, etc. Many are also using it to generate income by occasionally buying, selling or trading items online. Seven percent of rural Nebraskans estimate the impact of saving money as $1,000 or more annually. For some items, the economic impact of the Internet is greater in smaller communities. Persons living in or near smaller communities are more likely than persons living in or near larger communities to have used the Internet to earn money by running and growing a home-based business and making the family farm more efficient and/or profitable. Persons with occupations in agriculture are also generating income by running and growing a home-based business, making the family farm more efficient and/or profitable, and regularly selling online.
Most rural Nebraskans are aware of the following nature-based activities for tourists in or near their community: biking, hunting and fishing, hiking/walking trails and camping. Many are also aware of kayaking, canoeing or other river activities.
Overall, many rural Nebraskans are unsure of the expected impacts of the federal tax bill. At least three in ten indicated they don’t know how the bill will impact all of the items listed. And, opinions are mixed on the expected impact of the federal tax bill on their household’s tax burden. At least three in ten rural Nebraskans think the services provided by government and upper income Americans’ tax burden will decrease as a result of the federal tax bill. Over one-third think the income gap between the upper and middle income groups and the federal deficit will increase as a result of the bill.
Many rural Nebraskans have changed jobs and careers in the past ten years. Most rural Nebraskans expect to be in their same job ten years from now or until retirement. Few rural Nebraskans expect to switch careers in the next ten years. Most rural Nebraskans think individuals, colleges and universities, community colleges and primary (K–12) education have a lot of responsibility for job training or retraining.