May 21, 2013Published by: Drew Benvie

Pew’s new teens on social media report: 94% use Facebook, 26% Twitter, 5% Tumblr

Courtesy of Pew

Pew, the internet research centre, has published a new report looking at teen social network usage. The full report, available to download here, is a fascinating read.

Perhaps most startling is the sheer dominance of Facebook, and also the rise of Twitter amongst teens. Only last week at PR Week's PR and The Media conference we heard Radio 1's Rod McKenzie declare Facebook as 'dead among young people'  and that 'no self-respecting young person would be on Facebook'. He referenced Tumblr, SnapChat and Keek as being en vogue. In fact both on number of accounts and most-used social networks, Facebook is trouncing everything else, with Twitter a well-earned second place with one quarter of teens using Twitter.

Taken from the summary of the Pew report:

  • Teens are sharing more information about themselves on social media sites than they did in the past. For the five different types of personal information that we measured in both 2006 and 2012, each is significantly more likely to be shared by teen social media users in our most recent survey.
  • Teen Twitter use has grown significantly: 24% of online teens use Twitter, up from 16% in 2011.
  • The typical (median) teen Facebook user has 300 friends, while the typical teen Twitter user has 79 followers.
  • Focus group discussions with teens show that they have waning enthusiasm for Facebook, disliking the increasing adult presence, people sharing excessively, and stressful “drama,” but they keep using it because participation is an important part of overall teenage socializing.
  • 60% of teen Facebook users keep their profiles private, and most report high levels of confidence in their ability to manage their settings.
  • Teens take other steps to shape their reputation, manage their networks, and mask information they don’t want others to know; 74% of teen social media users have deleted people from their network or friends list.
  • Teen social media users do not express a high level of concern about third-party access to their data; just 9% say they are “very” concerned.
  • On Facebook, increasing network size goes hand in hand with network variety, information sharing, and personal information management.
  • In broad measures of online experience, teens are considerably more likely to report positive experiences than negative ones. For instance, 52% of online teens say they have had an experience online that made them feel good about themselves.

Below is the graphic charting the most often used social networks:

Courtesy of Pew 2

The report is a rich seam of information on future social media usage, not just the present state of youth internet, and well worth your time digesting in full.

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