Is Facebook stealing our time?

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You might not realise it, but some people might actually be spending more time on Facebook than doing other important things, perhaps even sleeping. According to the annual report by NM Incite and Nielsen, Americans spent 121 billion minutes browsing through social media networks in July alone.

This huge amount of time translates to 6.5 hours per American in just a month or a whopping 230,060 years. The report, subtitled “Social Media Comes of Age”, also revealed, not surprisingly, that Facebook is still the most popular social network in the US with 74.3 million users via the mobile web, 78.4 million visitors via mobile applications and 152.2 million visitors via PCs.

The study, which polled 1,998 social media users aged 18 and above from July to August, also placed Pinterest as one of the breakthrough stars of social media this year as it saw the biggest growth in unique users and the time spent by visitors from amongst social media sites across all mediums.

Pinterest clinched a modest sixth spot in terms of user traffic behind Blogger, Twitter, WordPress and LinkedIn but traffic to the image-sharing portal rose more than tenfold in 2012 compared to last year.

The research concludes that social media has become a pervasive part of modern life in the US. For example, 51 per cent of people aged 25 to 34 stated they accessed such sites at work, while about a third of users aged 18 to 24 said they use these portals in the bathroom.


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