Thursday, June 9, 2011

Pew Internet News: New Twitter Numbers; Internet Phone Calls

Twitter update 2011

Twitter Update 2011

13% of online adults use the status update service Twitter, which represents a significant increase from the 8% of online adults who identified themselves as Twitter users in November 2010. 95% of Twitter users own a mobile phone, and half of these users access the service on their handheld device.

As in our previous research on Twitter use, African Americans and Latinos continue to have high rates of adoption of the service. Fully 25% of online African Americans use Twitter at least occasionally, with 11% doing so on a typical day.

Additionally, Twitter use by internet users ages 25-34 has doubled since late 2010 (from 9% to 19%) and usage by those ages 35-44 has also grown significantly (from 8% to 14%).

Report: Internet phone calls

After years of modest activity, online phone calling has taken off as a quarter of American adult internet users (24%) have placed phone calls online. That amounts to 19% of all American adults.

On any given day 5% of internet users are going online to place phone calls.

Both figures are marked increases from previous readings in surveys by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. Using different question wording, the Project found in February 2007 that 8% of internet users (6% of all adults) had placed calls online and 2% of internet users were making calls on any given day.

At various points during the 2000s we asked similar questions and found that at most about a tenth of internet users had ever used the internet to place calls and the daily figure never rose above 1% of internet users.

Future of the Internet: Will Google make us stupid?

“My ability to do mental arithmetic is worse than my grandfathers because I grew up in an era with pervasive personal calculators….  I am not stupid compared to my grandfather, but I believe the development of my brain has been changed by the availability of technology.  The same will happen (or is happening) as a result of the Googleization of knowledge.  People are becoming used to bite sized chunks of information that are compiled and sorted by an algorithm.  This must be having an impact on our brains, but it is too simplistic to say that we are becoming stupid as a result of Google.” – Robert Acklund, Australian National University

Read more in our recent Future of the Internet report

Pew Internet research in the news

Twitter Use Doubles Among Young Adults Since 2010, June 1

Pew report: About 13% of adults online in the U.S. use Twitter
L.A. Times, June 1

Lots more phone calls being made online
CNN, May 31

New resources:

In case you missed it, we’ve made some changes to the type of data available on our data sets pages.

Presentations calendar:

June 13  » The Perfect People Meter: My Beautiful Fantasy  Lee Rainie will keynote the Advertising Research Foundation's audience research conference. He will explore how people use digital technology to consume media and how that makes audience measurement more complicated than in the past. He will examine how the coming exaflood of data will give everyone a chance to improve measurement systems and make them more useful.

Click here to see all upcoming presentations »

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The Pew Internet & American Life Project is an initiative of the Pew Research Center, a nonprofit "fact tank"that provides information on the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. The Pew Internet & American Life Project explores the impact of the internet on children, families, communities, the work place, schools, health care and civic/political life. Support for the project is provided by The Pew Charitable Trusts.