Based on comparisons with other studies, the current study demonstrates that a significant growth in home computer ownership is under way and people have a strong desire to avail themselves of the opportunities afforded by telecommuting. Moreover, people are also very interested in the vision of an "electronic community" as advanced by the Free-Net movement. In Regina, they are not only interested in becoming users of a Free-Net system but are also very interested in committing their time and resources to making such a system a reality.
Potential users of such a system span the entire gender, income, educational level and age spectra permitting a true democratization of this interactive electronic medium. Current users of the Internet are even more supportive of the goals and objectives of the Free-Net than naive respondents suggesting that, for many people, the Free-Net is not a jumping stone on their way to full Internet Access as much as it is an adjunct service to complement other existing services.
People for the most part are very interested in the types and topics of content areas of the Free-Net. Except for the young and lower-income strata, people are not very interested in merchandising opportunities and commercial activities on the Internet.
The support voiced for the Free-Net is very high, especially when the growth of existing and future commercial Internet Providers is considered. People seem genuinely attracted to the concept of a low-cost service that focuses on community, informational, educational, and participatory concerns and contents.
The study clearly demonstrates that the Great Plains Free-Net should have no difficulty securing the level of usage from the community to warrant the provision of its services. Furthermore, the level of support is so significant that governmental and non-governmental information providers should see the opportunities afforded by Free-Net as a broadly based medium for information delivery and dialog with their constituents.