Social Networking Is A Young Woman’s Game
February 14, 2013

Social Networking Is A Young Woman’s Game

Michael Harper for — Your Universe Online

Those survey crazy folks over at the Pew Internet and American Life Project are at it again, this time giving us some hard numbers on the current state of social networking in America. It might not surprise you to learn young women in urban areas are more likely to use some sort of social networking; be it Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr or Twitter. According to the new survey, the main factor in determining who is on these sites is age. Those Internet-using Americans under age 50 are very likely to use some sort of social networking, especially those between the ages of 18 and 29. In fact, 83 percent of this younger group is using some sort of social network, according to this new study. Urban-dwellers are obviously more likely to use social networking, as they´re likely to have better connections to the Internet than those in rural areas. Women were also found to be overall more likely to share with one another on these sites.

The Pew Group dissected these social networks, giving a detailed list of what kind of person uses which site. For instance, according to their surveys, (1,802 phone interviews in English and Spanish of adults aged 18 and over between November 14, 2012 and December 9, 2012) 67 percent of Facebook users are 18-29 year old women. Young African-Americans living in urban areas are more likely to use Twitter; young white women under 50 with some college education were in the majority on Pinterest; young African-American and Latino women in urban areas preferred to use Instagram.

Tumblr had the most consistent and neutral user base of all social networks surveyed, as the majority of these users are simply adults between the ages of 18 and 29. Throughout their surveys, the Pew Internet Group found social networks are primarily populated with young people, between the ages of 18 and 29. Every other distinguishing demographic, such as education, income, location and race, were pretty evenly distributed amongst all social networks. For instance, 83 percent of adults between 18 and 29 and 77 percent of adults aged 30 to 49 used social networking. Once these adults hit 50, however, their use of these networks drops to 52 percent, the most significant drop in any other category. The next greatest deciding factors in whether a person uses social networking are gender and location with a nine percent split. As far as location is concerned, 70 percent of adults living in urban areas are on a social network, while only 61 percent of those living in rural areas use these networks.

The survey also found Twitter users have doubled since 2010. These days, 16 percent of all Internet users Tweet links, pictures and musings to their friends and followers. Pinterest remains dominated by young, white, educated females between the ages of 18 and 29. In fact, 25 percent of all female Internet users have a presence on Pinterest, compared to only five percent of all male Internet users. 18 percent of these users are white, while 20 percent have completed college and 23 percent of them bring home $50,000 to $74,999 (USD) a year. As for Facebook, the social network we all want to quit, women are also in the majority, making up 72 percent of all Internet users. Just as it is everywhere else in the survey, these users are younger. Interestingly, the Pew group did not specify which ethnicity was more likely to use Facebook.

Overall, it´s a young woman´s world out there in social network land, though it´s left to be seen if those in the 30 to 49 range will grow with these social networks, or leave them as a younger crowd´s game.