Archive for February, 2012

demographics of social media users

Sunday, February 19th, 2012


for those of us who do research in linking the online (social media) and offline worlds, it is very important to keep in mind the demographics of different social media services.

In Sept 09, according to Nielsen Claritas [], “the blogging and tweeting community at large isn’t necessarily more affluent, but bloggers and tweeters do live in more urban areas such as New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Chicago.”

african american were more likely to join twitter than other racial groups. hargiatti&litt found out why that was the case, and they did so upon analysing *longitudinal* data (i.e., user cialis 100mg data in 2009 and service (twitter) adoption in 2010). the predictors of twitter adoption in 2010 were:
1) be african american
2) having

web skills (as for 2009)
3) interest in (as for 2009): entertainment/celebrity news (this topic entirely explained the higher level of adoption for african american); science&research&technology&politics&news (negatively correlated. warning: these topics were negatively correlated for the age group under study – which was college students in chicago; for an older cohort, these topics might well matter).

These results are very US-centric, so here are few pointers about UK folks in social media: USA (2010); UKBritan; London.


In UK, we badly need research similar to hargiatti&litt’s. Until now, I only heard  people complaining about data being not representative, but nothing has been done to partly tackle the problem


[] The More Affluent and More Urban are More Likely to use Social Networks

[] Eszter Hargittai and Eden Litt. The tweet smell of celebrity success: Explaining variation in Twitter adoption among a diverse group of young adults. 2011

* barriers to internet adoption in US.