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Question Of The Day

How Big Is the Internet?

We asked a bunch of people, and transcribed the ones whose heads didn't explode.
April 27, 2012, 7:00am

The internet is the sharing of information over connections between multitudinous computers and servers around the planet physically enabled by wires, cables, satellite data, wireless radio (WiFi) and a bunch of other stuff. In this sense, it is ethereal and esoteric in nature, while physically made up of the electrons comprising the digital signals that define the data it shares.

But how big is it? You know what I mean? Is it like a pea or like the size of a massive parking deck or something? How big's the internet?

VICE: How big is the internet?
Jana, 17, Sydney (right): Well, apparently we only have access to like, three percent of the internet or something. So it’s sort of infinite, really.

Infinite? Could you possibly give a finite size? In physical terms.
I’m pretty sure infinite's the size.


Lindsey, 50, Syndey (left): How big is the internet? Well it can’t really have a size, it’s the network of it, it’s everything, and everybody. It’s bringing people together much more as well. Everyone.

It’s everyone in the world then?
Yes, the internet's size is the size of everyone. I know that’s not what you asked, sorry.

No, no, it really kind of is.

Gareth, 28, Portsmouth: Absolutely massive.

If you could measure it?
Global. Global size.

You got anything more inventive?

Hannah, 25, London: Well I think it’s—well obviously it’s massive, it’s completely taken off. But I do think it’s making the world seem a lot smaller.

Oh yeah? You better keep that opinion to yourself, it might shock a lot of people. So, is it smaller than the world and equal to…?
I’d say New York and London put together.

That’s pretty big.

How big is the internet?
Bod, 39, London (left): It’s about as big as the planet.

Can you give me a more interesting measure?
I’d say it was about as big as 1000 Mighty Mices [sic]. Mighty Mice is big—so I’d say about a thousand of him.

And what about you, Scott?
Scott, 38, London (right): It’s a little bit bigger than what he said.

OK, smartass, what do you think?
I don’t really know what Mighty Mice is anyway.

No, nor do I actually.
Bod: OK… it’s however many Coke bottles there are in existence.

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