Techtaffy Newsdesk

Social networking is the most popular online activity worldwide, according to the findings of a recently released comScore study. Social networking accounted for nearly 1 in every 5 minutes spent online globally in October 2011, ranking as the most engaging online activity worldwide. Social networking sites now reach 82 per cent of the world’s Internet population age 15 and older that accessed the Internet from a home or work computer, representing 1.2 billion users around the globe.

In October, Facebook reached more than half (55 per cent) of the world’s global audience and accounted for 1 in every 7 minutes spent online around the world and 3 in every 4 social networking minutes.

In October, Twitter reached 1 in 10 Internet users worldwide, growing 59 per cent in the past year. Other popular microblogging destinations seeing rapid adoption include Chinese site Sina Weibo, with its audience growing 181 per cent in the past year to rank as the tenth largest social network in October. Tumblr, which ranked twelfth worldwide in audience size, grew 172 per cent in the past year.

Although young users age 15-24 still represent the most highly-engaged segment of social networkers, with an average of 8 hours per visitor spent in the category in October, social networking is catching on among older age segments across the globe. In fact, people age 55 and older represented the fastest-growing age segment in global social networking usage, with the penetration of social networks in the segment increasing nearly 10 percentage points since July 2010 to 80 per cent in October 2011.

In the U.S., 64 per cent of smartphone users accessed social networking sites at least once in October 2011, with 2 in 5 smartphone owners connecting via social networking nearly every day. In the EU5, 45 per cent of smartphone owners accessed social networks on their mobile device during the month, with nearly 1 in 4 doing so on a near daily basis.


Top 10 Most Engaged Social Networking Markets Worldwide

Israel led all countries with visitors spending an average of more than 11 hours on social networking sites during the month. Argentina ranked second at 10.7 hours, followed by Russian (10.4 hours) and Turkey (10.2 hours). The United States, at 6.9 hours per person, did not even rank within the top ten countries for social networking engagement.

Top 10 Global Markets by Average Social Networking Hours per Visitor
October 2011
Total Audience: Visitors Age 15+, Home/Work Location*
Source: comScore Media Metrix
Average Hours
per Visitor
Spent on Social
Networking Sites
Worldwide 5.7
Israel 11.1
Argentina 10.7
Russia 10.4
Turkey 10.2
Chile 9.8
Philippines 8.7
Colombia 8.5
Peru 8.3
Venezuela 7.9
Canada 7.7

*Excludes visitation from public computers such as Internet cafes or access from mobile phones or PDAs.