Twitter Popular Among Young Adults, Minorities, Urbanites


Only 8 percent of the American adults who use the Internet are Twitter users, and the messaging service is most popular among young adults, minorities and those who live in cities, according to a new study.

New data from the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project found that of the eight percent of online adults that said they do use Twitter, only two percent do so on a typical day. And since 74 percent of American adults are Internet users, this means the Twitter users only make up six percent of the entire adult population.

Not surprisingly, young Internet users ages 18 to 29 are significantly more likely to use Twitter than older adults. About 14 percent of Twitter users fall into this demographic. The second-largest category of adult members is between the ages 30 to 49.

The survey also showed that minority Internet users, especially Latinos and African Americans, are more than twice as likely to use Twitter compared to Caucasians. About 18 percent of active Twitter users are Hispanic, 13 percent are African American and only five percent are Caucasian.

In addition, urban residents are also about twice as likely to use Twitter as rural dwellers. Women and those who are college-educated are also slightly more likely than average to use the service. As for how often it's used, one quarter of Twitter users check in multiple times per day to read tweets from others. One in five never check for new material on the site.

The content of the tweets posted also varies. About 72 percent of Twitter users post updates about their personal life, activities or interests, and 62 percent of post updates are work-related. Linking to news stories is also very popular. About 55 percent of Twitter users share links to articles and one in ten do so at least once a day.

Samantha Murphy
Samantha Murphy was a contributor to Live Science, covering the tech industry. She holds a degree in journalism and cinema studies from New York University.