Could Twitter Prove Social Media Addictive?

In the debate over social media addiction, Twitter might prove to be even more tempting than Facebook, especially for younger generations.

According to a survey by the consumer electronics shopping site Retrevo, 39% of Twitter users under the age of 35 check their site more than 10 time a day. That’s in comparison to 27% of Facebook users of the same age who check in more than 10 times a day.

Perhaps the large numbers are due to the ever-increasing accessibility of social media sites. Almost 50% of consumers under 35 preferred using their smart phones or other mobile devices to check their sites versus a desktop or laptop computer.

The ability to update social media through mobile devices has led to some pretty interesting trends of update locations. Of those under 35, 65% of users check their social media while on vacation, 64% while at work, and even 30% are distracted with Twitter and Facebook while on dates.

One of the most surprising trends? 36% of users under 35 update their social media after sex. Men are twice as likely as women to check in after the deed, as are iPhone owners over Blackberry owners.

While the study may not prove that social media has become addictive, it sure has given insight into new user behaviors. So if you want to break that cigarette addiction after sex, reach for your cell phone instead. Just leave out the juicy details.

image via retrevo.com

image via retrevo.com

What is your reaction? Do you spend more time on Twitter than Facebook, and do you think either could be addictive? What’s the strangest place you’ve ever updated you sites?

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12 responses to “Could Twitter Prove Social Media Addictive?

  1. All I’m going to say is that wifi is not limited to rooms outside the bathroom.

  2. Checking in after sex? Really? Is Twitter that important? What ever happened to cuddling or spooning?

    Anyways, that being said, I think social media is VERY addictive and Twitter is the “next big thing” as far as this type of media is concerned. BUT what are most of the users using it for? Are they getting the same use out of Twitter as journalists are, or are they going on and updating statuses with something like, “Hey, dude, I just got laid”?

    I probably spend more time updating my Twitter account than my Facebook just to keep up with what’s going on in the world. And I don’t update my statuses anywhere conspicuous. Certainly not in the bedroom.

  3. This is really really interesting. I think that social media definitely can become a true addiction. These stats only confirm that…

    • I completely agree. I think on a certain level I am addicted, I mean, I have to have my roommate change my password so I can’t get on my Facebook during days when I have alot of homework–and especially during finals. Sad, I know.

  4. Sarah,

    I love your interesting facts here. They’re quirky, not to mention completely believable. I definitely know people addicted to social media; i.e. Facebook or Twitter. Unfortunately, that’s going to have to be me in a few weeks (Prof. Van Wyke, if you read this, ask me 🙂 ).

    So, weirdest place I’ve updated. I’d say it’s a tie between the tunnel that goes underneath of metropolitan Paris in order to get to the Arc de Triumph, or a youth hostel bathroom in Amsterdam. Don’t judge. Ha.

  5. These studies are very intriguing. I definitely fall in that 39 percent of people that check Twitter over ten times a day. I can’t get a enough of Twitter. I love how it brings all your news, interests, and friends into one place. Are the rest of you as hooked as I am?

    • Yes. It’s kind of embarrassing, really. You’re right though: Twitter rolls your news, interests and friends into one; it’s not just a string of news feed from your closest 1,000 friends. I rarely get breaking news from news websites anymore – it’s almost always through twitter.

  6. I checked my twitter for the first time in a week today and could think of nothing worth tweeting. It may be that my brain is fried and ready for a break, but I definitely do not have the urge or the time to check it ten times a day (just saying).

    • I’m definitely the same as Kate here, my Twitter account is pretty sad and in need of an update, but I don’t know what to say. One major issue is that my phone doesn’t have the Internet and for some reason I can’t text Tweets. Perhaps if I had easier access to it on an iPhone I would be Tweeting like a bandit.

      • @caitlin

        I don’t have internet on my phone either. You can text your tweets to twitter. Just set up your phone on your twitter account and it’ll send you a confirmation text, and that’s the number you use.

  7. marybessbolling

    The addiction to Twitter is startlingly real.
    The skeptics I talk to all say they don’t have time for it (just like I said at the beginning of the semester). Once people get started, I’m convinced they make time for Twitter.

    On that cryptic note, I found yesterday (on twitter) that iPhone released a new free app for Pepsi’s AMP energy drink (“AMP up before you score”). The app allows guys to research different stereotypes of women, appropriate pick-up lines to use on them, even a profile of “your favortie singer (Ani DiFranco)” when hitting on a women’s studies major. To top it off, the app has a “brag” feature that can access twitter and facebook.

    I wonder if AMP is targeting those male iPhone users Sarah mentioned above who are proven more likely to update their social media after sex? Weird.

  8. I’m probably in that group that’s addicted. When I first got my Twitter account I rarely checked it. But the more I started following people I realized that it was more useful than I had first anticipated. I get a lot of news updates on Twitter now too, instead of reading the news.

    I recently got a new phone, and I had to get one with the internet on it [didn’t have much of a choice with U.S. Cellular]. It’s definitely added to that addiction.

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