Pew Survey: Nearly Two-Thirds Of All Americans Use Social Media

At 90%, young Americans still are most likely to use social networks, but growth in use among those 65 and older is surging.

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It’s a social media landslide. The Pew Research Center is out with a new social media survey this week and it finds that 65 percent of American adults are social media users.

While previous Pew studies have focused on the social media penetration among US Internet users, this one tracked use among the full US population, giving a fuller picture of how large an audience Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and the like are reaching. Pew’s numbers shows social media use of 76 percent among US Internet users.

Pew compiled the results of 27 surveys and about 62,000 individual interviews over a 10-year period to show how Americans’ use of social media has grown over time. In 2005, only 7 percent of Americans were on social networks, not surprising since Facebook, the first network to reach critical mass, was founded in 2004 and was restricted to college students until 2006.

Since then Americans’ social network uptake has been steady:


Young Americans continue to be the most likely to use social networks, according to the survey, with 90 percent of those 18 to 29 reporting that they use at least one social site. However, growth in usage by young adults started tapering off in 2010, while use by older people has surged. Today, 35 percent of those 65 and older use social media, more than three times more than the 11 percent who reported social use in 2010.


You can read the full report here.

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About the author

Martin Beck
Martin Beck was Third Door Media's Social Media Reporter from March 2014 through December 2015.

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