The size of that section of the electronic market place known as the Internet is substantially dependent on how many people acquire and retain Internet access. This core of Internet users is the bedrock on which electronic commerce will be built. More attention has been given to the reasons why people join the Internet community than to their motivation for leaving. We therefore sought to carry out exploratory research into the thinking of some of the likely Internet defectors in order to identify intelligent questions which could form the basis for subsequent experimental hypotheses. At the same time we took the opportunity to examine possible critical mass effects in the adoption of the Internet as a piece of innovative technology, and to shed some light on the question of knowledge gaps, more recently characterised as the problem of the information rich and the information poor.
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