ECONOMY

Two in three Greeks know nothing about Internet, computers

BRUSSELS – Two in every three Greeks have absolutely no knowledge about information technology, while just one in four knows more than just the basics, a survey by the European Commission’s statistical arm has shown. The Eurostat study was based on six basic skills, starting from moving the mouse to start a program, through to copying and transferring files or folders, to the use of statistical charts and compression programs and ending with the language of programming. Countries were marked according to people’s familiarity with those skills and the result is disappointing for Greece and its economy: This country was a distant last behind all other EU member states and scored just about half of the bloc’s average, making the dream of convergence with the West in IT a very distant one. In Greece, 65 percent of those surveyed responded that they were not familiar with any of the above skills, another 12 percent said they were aware of a couple of them and only 9 percent were familiar with five or all six. The equivalent EU average figures are much different. Regardless of age, only 37 percent have no computer knowledge, 15 percent have minimal knowledge and 22 percent are familiar with five or all six skills. There is a clear gap between ages. The younger generations are far more familiar with IT than the older ones, though this is no consolation for Greece. In the most productive age group, between 25 and 34 years, 73 percent of Greeks have no or minimal knowledge of computers. About half of Greeks between 16 and 24 also had little knowledge about computers.