50 Amazing Facts About the Internet

Did you know the Internet took only four years to reach 50 million users? It took 38 years for radio, while TV made it in 13 years. Here are some interesting facts and information about the World Wide Web:

50 Amazing Facts About the Internet 1

1. The Worldwide Web was developed in Objective C programming language.

2. The “www” part of a website is optional and is not required by any web policy or standard.

3. Twenty percent of the world’s population, 1.17 to 1.33 billion people, now use the Internet. North America (72%) has the highest penetration, and Africa (5%) has the lowest.


4. The Internet and the World Wide Web are often used in everyday speech without much distinction. However, the Internet and the World Wide Web are not the same. The Internet is a global data communications system. It is a hardware and software infrastructure that provides connectivity between computers. In contrast, the Web is one of the services communicated via the Internet. It is a collection of interconnected documents and other resources linked by hyperlinks and URLs.

5. The Internet was called the ‘Galactic Network’ in memos written by MIT’s JCR Licklider in 1962.

6. Researchers consider that the first search engine was Archie, created in 1990 by Alan Emtage, a student at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, Web Posting Reviews.

7. It was once considered a letter in the English language. The Chinese call it a little mouse, Danes and Swedes call it ‘elephant’s trunk,’ Germans a spider monkey, and Italians a snail. Israelis pronounce it ‘strudels,’ and the Czechs say ‘rollmops… What is it? The @ sign.

8. Did you know that the original URL of Yahoo! was

9. Google got its name from the mathematical figure googol, which denotes the number ‘one followed by a hundred zeros.’

10. Yahoo! derived its name from the word Yahoo coined by Jonathan Swift in Gulliver’s Travels. A Yahoo is a person who is repulsive in appearance and action and is barely human!

11. The prime reason the Google home page is so bare is that the founders didn’t know the HTML and just wanted a quick interface. The submit button was a later addition, and initially, hitting the RETURN key was the only way to burst Google into life.

12. The word ’email’ has been banned by the French Ministry of Culture. They are required to use the word ‘Courriel’ instead, which is the French equivalent of the Internet. This move became the subject of ridicule from the cyber community in general.

13. The first ever ISP was CompuServe, which still exists under AOL Timer Warner.

14. Did you know that was the first domain name registered online?

15. According to a University of Minnesota report, researchers estimate the volume of Internet traffic is growing at an annual rate of 50 to 60 percent.

16. If you want to sell your book on, you can set the price, but they will take a 55 percent cut and leave you with only 45 percent.

17. Almost half of the people online have at least three email accounts. In addition, the average consumer has maintained the same email address for four to six years.

18. Spam accounts for over 60 percent of all email, according to Message Labs. Google says at least one-third of all Gmail servers are filled with spam.

19. Anthony Greco, aged 18, became the first person arrested for spam (unsolicited instant messages) on February 21, 2005.

20. The first website was built at CERN. CERN is the French acronym for the European Council for Nuclear Research in Geneva, Switzerland.

21. The World Wide Web is the most extensive implementation of hypertext, but it is not the only one. A computer help file is a hypertext document.

22. The concept of style sheets was already in place when the first browser was released.

23. The address of the world’s first web server is The URL of the first web page was Although this page is not hosted anymore at CERN, a later version is posted at

24. The first browser that made the Web available to PC and Mac users was Mosaic. It was developed by the National Center for Supercomputing (NCSA) led by Marc Andreessen in February 1993. Mosaic was one of the first graphical web browsers and led to an explosion in web use.

25. April 30, 1993, is an important date for the Web because, on that day, CERN announced that anyone might use WWW technology freely.

26. Microsoft released Internet Explorer in 1995. This event initiated the browser wars. By bundling Internet Explorer with the Windows operating system, by 2002, Internet Explorer became the most dominant web browser, with a market share of over 95 percent.

27. The W3C, or the World Wide Web Consortium, manages the development of standards for the World Wide Web. The W3C was founded in October 1994 and headed by Tim Berners-Lee.

28. Only 4 percent of Arab women use the Internet. Moroccan women represent almost a third of that figure.

29. YouTube’s bandwidth requirements to upload and view all those videos cost as much as 1 million dollars a day and drawing. The revenues generated by YouTube cannot pay for its upkeep.

30. According to AT&T vice president Jim Cicconi, 8 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every minute. This was in April 2008. On May 21, 2009, YouTube received 20 hours of video content per minute.

31. Around 75 percent of the music available for download has never been purchased, and it costs money to be on the server.

32. Domain registration was free until the National Science Foundation changed this on September 14, 1995.

33. It is estimated that one of every eight married couples started by meeting online.

34. Iceland has the highest percentage of Internet users at 68 percent. The United States stands at 56%. 34% of all Malaysians use the Internet, while only eight percent of Jordanians are connected, 4% of Palestinians, 0.6% of Nigerians, and 0.1% of Tajikistan are.

35. Employees at Google are encouraged to use 20 percent of their time working on their projects. Google News and Orkut are projects that grew from this working model.

36. The technology behind the Internet began in the 1960s at MIT. The first message ever to be transmitted was LOG.. why? The user had attempted to type LOGIN, but the network crashed after an enormous load of data of the letter G. It was to be a while before Facebook would be developed

37. According to a University of Minnesota report, researchers estimate the volume of Internet traffic is growing at an annual rate of 50 to 60 percent.

38. Ever since the birth of the Internet, file sharing has been a problem for the authorities that manage it. In 1989, McGill University shut down its FTP indexing site after finding out that half of the Internet traffic from America into Canada was responsible for half of the Internet traffic. Fortunately, several similar file indexing sites had already been made.

39. Google estimates that today’s Internet contains about 5 million terabytes of data (1TB = 1,000GB) and claims it has only indexed a paltry 0.04% of it! So you could fit the whole Internet on just 200 million Blu-Ray disks.

40. Speaking of search – One-THIRD of all Internet searches are specifically for pornography. It is estimated that 80% of all images on the Internet are of naked women.

41. According to legend, Amazon became the number one shopping site because, in the days before the invention of the search giant Google, Yahoo would list the areas in their directory alphabetically!

42. The first-ever banner ad invaded the Internet in 1994, and it was just as bad as today. The ad was part of AT&T’s “you will” campaign and was placed on the HotWired homepage.

43. Of the 247 BILLION email messages sent every day, 81% are pure spam.

44. 35.6% of internet users are in Asia. With an average of 389 million internet surfers monthly, Asia is the largest internet crowd among other world regions. In Asia, 10 out of 100 surf the Internet.

45. Only 16.6% of the world’s population surf the Internet. Amount of internet surfers in Asia (389,392,28 million) is 11 times the population of Australia (34,468,443 million). 19% of internet users are from the United States (210,080,067 million). Around 18 countries still don’t have an Internet connection. North Korea’s internet penetration statistics are not publicized.

46. The first Internet worm was created by Robert T. Morris, Jr, and attacked over 6000 Internet hosts.

47. According to The Economist magazine, the first truly electronic bank on the Internet, First Virtual Holdings, was opened by Lee Stein in 1994.

48. The ‘Dilbert Zone Web site was the first syndicated comic strip site available.

49. Did you know domain names could be sold at high prices? For example, the most expensive domain to date, ‘,’ was purchased by Escom LLC at $14 million in January 2006. Another was ‘,’ sold to companies for $7.5 million in 1999.

Roberto Brock
the authorRoberto Brock
Snowboarder, traveler, DJ, Swiss design-head and HTML & CSS lover. Doing at the nexus of art and purpose to develop visual solutions that inform and persuade. I'm a designer and this is my work. Introvert. Coffee evangelist. Web buff. Extreme twitter advocate. Avid reader. Troublemaker.