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We're Addicted to Social Networks


If you had any doubt about the extent to which Facebook, Twitter, and other social platforms have taken over people's lives, stats like these should help put them to rest.

A recent study by Retrevo surveyed just over 1000 Americans and asked questions such as when, where, and how much time they spend on sites and services like Facebook and Twitter. It turns out that many of us are obsessed, checking in with our social circles at all times of the day and night.

We check social media sites all night long…

Not only do we check Facebook and Twitter throughout the day, almost half of the respondents said they check in on the social media scene in bed, during the night, or as soon as they wake up in the morning. And no big surprise here: users under the age of 25 tweet more at night than older users.

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… and first thing in the morning (especially iPhone users)

Half of social media users are so involved with Facebook and Twitter that they check the sites first thing in the morning — 16% say this is how they get their morning “news”.

iPhone owners use Facebook and Twitter more often and in more places: 28% of iPhone owners visit Twitter or Facebook before getting out of bed in the morning, compared with just 18% of all social media consumers under age 25 and 8% of those age 25+. Similarly, 26% of iPhone owners check in with Twitter or Facebook before turning on the TV, compared with 17% each of all social media consumers.

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Over half of us check Facebook at least once a day

More evidence that social media can be habit-forming: 56% of social media users say they need to check Facebook at least once a day, and 12% check in every couple of hours just to see what's happening.

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And many of us don't mind being interrupted by text messages

Consumers were asked how they felt about being interrupted at various times by electronic (including text) messages: 40% said they didn't mind being interrupted for a message, 32% said interruption during a meal was fine, and 7% said they would even check out a message during an intimate moment.

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Do you check in with your social circle at all hours? Do you find yourself depending more on social networks as trusted news sources?

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Join The Conversation

  • Kimmo Linkama's picture
    Mar 22 Posted 5 years ago KimmoLinkama While I admit to checking my SM networks several times a day, I'm not so addicted that I would check them at the instant I get my eyes open in the morning. Coffee first, socializing second.

    As far as "trusted news sources" go, social networks will never be that. "Social" in this case equals "personal", bringing people's own biases, prejudices and agendas into the game.

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