New Survey on Social Media Use in the U.S.

March 2, 2018
Snapchat app open on mobile device
Photo: Pexels

A new Pew Research Center survey of roughly 2,000 adults in the U.S. evaluated social media usage in early 2018. It found that a majority of Americans use YouTube and Facebook.

While social media use is most prevalent in 18 to 29 year olds at 88 percent, the shares of use between 30 to 49 year olds and those aged 50 to 64 are between 64 and 78 percent, well over half. Though many Americans use social media, Pew Research Center found that "Just 3 percent of social media users indicate that they have a lot of trust in the information they find on these sites. And relatively few have confidence in these platforms to keep their personal information safe from bad actors."

This overlap is broadly indicative of the fact that many Americans use multiple social platforms. Roughly three-quarters of the public (73 percent) uses more than one of the eight platforms measured in this survey, and the typical (median) American uses three of these sites. The median 18- to 29-year-old uses four of these platforms, but that figure drops to three among 30- to 49-year-olds, to two among 50- to 64-year-olds and to one among those 65 and older.

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