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Majority Of U.S. Adults Use Facebook

“Ubiquitous” may be a slight exaggeration, but only slightly: Facebook is basically everywhere, with a large majority of online U.S. adults (79%) saying they have accounts on the world’s largest social network, according to a survey of 1,520 Americans conducted by Pew. That’s up from 72% in 2015.

By comparison, the other major social networks have significantly smaller user bases, with 32% of online adults using Instagram, up from 27% in 2015; 31% Pinterest, unchanged from last year; 29% LinkedIn, up from 25% in 2015; and 24% Twitter, up from 23% in 2015.  Adjusting for non-Internet users, that means more than two out of three U.S. adults (68%) are Facebook members, while 28% use Instagram, 26% Pinterest, 25% LinkedIn, and 21% Twitter.

However, the other social networks often enjoyed strength in specific areas: for example over half of online adults with a college education are on LinkedIn, while 45% of all online women use Pinterest.

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Facebook leads in many measures of user engagement, including frequency of use, with the proportion of Facebook users who check in at least once per day up from 70% in 2015 to 76% this year. The proportion of Instagram users who check in every day is 51%, while 42% of Twitter users do the same, along with 25% of Pinterest users and 18% of LinkedIn users.

Facebook’s growth is powered in part by a continuing influx of older users: that proportion of online adults ages 65 and older who use Facebook jumped from 48% in 2015 to 62% in 2016.  Meanwhile, 72% of adult Internet users ages 50-64 are now on Facebook, as well as 84% of online adults 30-49, and 88% of those ages 18-29.

Of course the big social networks hardly exist in isolation, and Pew found major overlaps in their user bases. Thus, among Facebook users, 29% also use Twitter, 39% Instagram, 36% Pinterest, and 33% LinkedIn. And among Twitter users, 65% also use Instagram, 38% Pinterest, 54% LinkedIn, and 93% Facebook.
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