Living Social Media
Insight on social media usage and its impact on social engagement

I read an interesting article from MSNBC about the benefits of social engagement found in Facebook usage today. The article discusses a Pew research study which found that, “those who use these sites, especially Facebook users, have higher measures of social well-being.” I found much of what the article discussed to be valid points about some of the benefits found in social networking. The following are several points from the research study, taken directly from the article:  

•They’re “more trusting than others.” A Facebook user “who uses the site multiple times per day is 43 percent more likely than other Internet users and more than three times as likely as non-internet users to feel that most people can be trusted.”

•They have “more close relationships.”  A person who uses Facebook “several times per day averages 9 percent more close, core ties in their overall social network compared with other Internet users.”

•They are “much more politically engaged.” As Pew notes, its survey was done during election season last fall. “Compared with other Internet users, and users of other social networking platforms, a Facebook user who uses the site multiple times per day was an additional two and half times more likely to attend a political rally or meeting, 57 percent more likely to persuade someone on their vote, and 43 percent more likely to have said they would vote.” MySpace users, in contrast, “are the least politically active” among social networking site users; “only 9 percent” said they attended a political rally, 18 percent said they “attempted to influence someone’s vote and 57 percent voted or intended to vote.”

•They “get more social support.” A Facebook user who “uses the site multiple times per day receives more emotional support and companionship” than those who aren’t on the site. “For Facebook users, the additional boost is equivalent to about half the total support that the average American receives as a result of being married or cohabitating with a partner.”

•Facebook helps users “retain high school ties and it revives dormant relationships.” “In our sample, the average Facebook user has 229 Facebook friends,” Pew said. Their friends’ list breaks down this way: 22 percent are people from high school; 12 percent are extended family; 10 percent are co-workers; 9 percent are college friends; 8 percent are immediate family; 7 percent are connections made through voluntary groups; 2 percent

Many other facts and figures regarding social networking habits are highlighted in the article: http://digitallife.today.com/_news/2011/06/15/6867050-facebook-users-big-on-trust-close-relationships-study

Also find the Pew report on: A research sudy on social networking, which I also did a minor bklog post on:

http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/Technology-and-social-networks.aspx

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