Pew: Why Americans Use Social Media

The latest national survey conducted by Pew Internet & American Life Project shows:

  • Two-thirds of online adults (66%) use social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace or LinkedIn.
  • Internet users say that connections with family members and friends (both new and old) are a primary consideration in their adoption of social media tools.
  • Two-thirds of social media users say that staying in touch with current friends and family members is a major reason they use these sites
  • Half say that connecting with old friends they’ve lost touch with is a major reason behind their use of these technologies.

Other factors play a much smaller role:

  • 14% of users say that connecting around a shared hobby or interest is a major reason they use social media
  • 9% say that making new friends is equally important
  • Reading comments by public figures and finding potential romantic partners are cited as major factors by just 5% and 3% of social media users, respectively.

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