Statistics Canada released a study last week (Our Lives in Digital Times) that, finally, shows us some hard Canadian numbers and analysis to underscore the seismic shift we’re all seeing in media consumption and consumer behaviour online.

Seems good ol’ Statscan has labelled us “The Talkative Society”, noting that while digital technology has got us communicating with each other more, and differently, than ever before, it’s also causing a change in the way we behave:

As people communicate more and in different ways, they are choosing to expand their associations, moving from geographically-defined communities to communities of interest. [emphasis mine]

Spending on “information and communication technologies” (ICTs), which is everything from high-speed internet access to Blackberries is also on the rise:

between 1997 and 2003, average household spending…rose from $299 to $326, which was even more significant given that computer prices were falling during this period.

So there you have it – the next phrase to be over-used in the social media sphere: Communities of Interest.

*(My apologies to Tom Axworthy!)

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