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People are spending more and more time online at the expense of traditional forms of entertainment, new research has revealed.

According to figures from studies conducted by Ofcom, the average internet user spends 36 minutes more online daily that they did in 2002.

Meanwhile, time spent watching television, making phone calls and listening to the radio has all fallen in the same period.

The survey also revealed changes in the traditional demographic base of internet use, with women and the over-65s both passing more of their leisure time surfing the net.

Among silver surfers, some 16 per cent now spend an average of 42 hours online every week, while women in the 25-35 year old demographic spend 55 per cent of total hours spent online.

Peter Phillips of Ofcom told the Guardian: "Ever since it kicked off in the early 90s the web has been male-dominated. For the first time this year women are spending more time on the internet than men.

"It's a big shift and has implications for the kind of content that content providers want to have on the internet."

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