Social Media and Young Adults

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teens social networkingPew Internet & American Life Project released a study about internet and social media use among Millennial generation by situating it within similar data for adolescents and adults older than 30. The data on teens is drawn from a survey conducted between June 26 and September 24, 2009 of 800 adolescents (ages 12 to 17). The adult data are drawn from a survey conducted between August 18 and September 14, 2009 of 2,253 adults (age 18 and over). Here are some of the key findings:

Blogging is down among young adults

  • One of the findings is that young people are blogging less than they used to. 14% of online teens say they blog, down from 28% in 2006.
  • Also the commenting activity is lower as 52% of teen social network users report commenting on friends’ blogs, down from the 76% who did so in 2006.
  • In 2009 15% of internet users ages 18-29 maintain a blog —a 9% point drop in two years. However, 11% of internet users ages thirty and older now maintain a personal blog (7% in 2007).

Social networking sites’ usage numbers

  • 73% of wired American teens use social networking websites. 55% of online teens used social networking sites in November 2006.
  • 47% of online adults use social networking sites, up from 37% in November 2008.
  • 72% of online 18-29 year olds use social networking websites, significantly higher than the 40% of internet users ages 30 and up who use these sites.
  • Adults are increasingly fragmenting their social networking experience as a majority of those who use social networking sites – 52% say they have two or more different profiles.
  • Among adult profile owners 73% have a Facebook profile, 48% have a MySpace profile and 14% have a profile on LinkedIn.

Teens are not using Twitter

  • 8% of internet users ages 12-17 use Twitter. Older teens are more likely to use Twitter than their younger counterparts; 10% of online teens ages 14-17 do so, compared with 5% of those ages 12-13.
  • Young adults lead the way when it comes to using Twitter or status updating. One-third of online 18-29 year olds post or read status updates.


  • Three-quarters of teens and 93% of adults ages 18-29 now have a cell phone.

Internet usage

  • 93% of teens ages 12-17 and young adults ages 18-29 go online. 74% of all adults ages 18 and older go online.
  • 48% of online teens have bought things online: books, clothing or music, up from 31% in 2000.

Image credit Bina Sveda

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Priit Kallas

Priit is the founder and CEO of DreamGrow Digital, an internet marketing and social media company. With his 20+ years internet marketing experience he is Helping companies to understand and use the digital marketing to reach their target audiences. He's also writing on a personal growth website He has spoken at hundreds of seminars and conferences on different aspects of internet marketing. Priit is also the organizer of Digital Elite Camp, a leading traffic and conversion event.

3 Responses

  1. David says:

    I myself happen to be a Millenial, because I definitely have that mindset. I was born in 1979 and:

    1. I support green technologies, lgbtq rights (such as same – sex marriage and crossdressing), immigration rights, etc.
    2. I use Facebook and blog on Google.

    This is why those who classify me as gen x are wrong. You are absolutely correct, Priit, when you mentioned that it is all about one’s mindset.

  2. Priit Kallas says:

    Thanks David. I believe that the Millenial is more of a mindset than way of using tech. I would guess that younger generations are less “business like” more about friends and fun in their tech use.

  3. David says:

    Some of us may think that the Millenial Generation is from 1977 to 95 for 3 reasons:

    1. A chart on the web proves that the annual birthrate REALLY started to dramatically increase in ’77. The chart shows 3.3 million babies born that year and 3.14m in ’76 (a 160,000 difference). The birthrate leveled off in ’95.
    2. Those born in ’77 just came of age when the web went public in ’95, hence the “Net Generation”, or Gen y.
    3. Studies show very similar attitudes between those born in the late ’70s and babies of the ’80s (the former also voted 66 – 32 for Obama).

    Supporters of these dates may have a point. However, I believe that ANYONE can be a Millenial if he/she is tech – savvy, open – minded to diversity of all kinds, and likes the latest pop culture. I feel this way because many people do not fit into the generation to which they were assigned. I say, let everyone choose whichever generation best matches their CHARACTERISTICS.

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