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USA: Many adults use social networks

The Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project has announced a new study that deals with social network websites like Facebook, LinkedIn and MySpace. The researchers found out that altogether 35 percent of adult internet users have a profile on an online social network. This is a large rise: In 2005 only 8 percent of the adults used online communities.

Because adults make up a larger portion of the population than the children or teenager, the number of 35 percent represents the actual age structure. The researchers also explain that users of social platforms are mostly younger online adults: 75 percent of the users are between 18 and 24 years old. Furthermore 57 percent are between 25 and 34 years old. Only 7 percent of the users are 65 years old and older.

The most popular social networks are MySpace, Facebook or LinkedIn. 50 percent of the adult users have a profile on MySpace, 22 percent like Facebook and 6 percent have placed their profile on LinkedIn. The researchers guess that adults use social networks because of private reasons. Often adults and teens use online communities because they want to build connections with people they know. It is also interesting that 60 percent of adult users only open their social network profile to friends. According to this 36 percent agree that anyone can see their profile.

Find more information on the Website of the Pew Internet & American Life Project

Available on the website since January 20, 2009