‘Internet’ or ‘The Internet’. Which is Correct?

Most English speakers say and write "the Internet" (with “the”) to make reference to the network that we all use to share information.

Include the article “the” before the noun Internet.

Use the Internet to find job opportunities.

Use Internet to find job opportunities.

You can also use “Internet” to mean “internet access”, in which case you should remove the article.

Do you have Internet? (meaning internet access)

Do you have the Internet? (It makes no sense. You can’t own the Internet)

1. The Article ‘The’ Before Internet

Most English speakers say and write "the Internet" (with “the”) to make reference to the network that we all use to share information.

We can use the Internet to find companies that meet our needs.

Dropping the article is not plain wrong since some native speakers use “internet” without “the”. However, many consider it incorrect, so we do not recommend it.

We can use Internet to find companies that meet our needs.

Relative frequency of the phrase the internet
"Use the Internet" vs. "use Internet" in books through time
Source: Google Books Ngram Viewer

You can use the definite article even if you are talking about the Internet in a general sense.

The Internet is not always reliable

When using "internet" as an adjective, however, avoid the article if the noun that follows does not require it.

I don’t have internet access.

I don’t have the internet access.

In everyday English, we commonly use the expression “internet” as a shortened form of the phrase “internet access”. Omit the article in this case as well.

I have internet. (meaning internet access.)

I have the internet. (It makes no sense; you can’t own the Internet.)

2. Using 'Internet' With Expressions and Phrases

Follow the same strategy (of including the article "the") with these expressions:

  • Access the Internet
  • Be available on the Internet
  • Buy something on the Internet
  • Connect to the Internet
  • Download something from the Internet
  • Find something on the Internet
  • Go on the Internet
  • Surf the Internet
  • Etc.

The movie is available on the Internet.

There are many ways to find what you need on the Internet.

Note that we always use the preposition “on” or “from” before “the Internet”.

This book is available on the Internet.

You can download the software from the Internet.

Do not use the prepositions “in” or “at” in this context.

The book is available in/at the Internet.

Should you capitalize Internet? Since there are no hard and fast rules about capitalizing this word, both options are acceptable.

You can easily find the information by using the Internet/internet.

But avoid capitalization when using it as an adjective.

Do you have an internet address?

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