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Pew: Facebook, YouTube most popular online platforms in America

Research also shows that 22% of Americans use X.

Social media. Credit: geralt/Pixabay.
Social media. Credit: geralt/Pixabay.

New data by the Pew Research Center provides a snapshot of the current social-media landscape in America.

A poll of 5,733 U.S. adults was taken last year from May 19 to Sept. 5 to determine the popularity of certain platforms and what demographic preferred them.

The dominant apps Americans used were YouTube (with a whopping 83% using it at least once), Facebook (68%) and Instagram (47%). Other platforms included Pinterest (35%), TikTok (33%), LinkedIn (30%), WhatsApp (29%), Snapchat (27%), X (22%), Reddit (22%) and BeReal (3%).

TikTok saw the largest uptick, up 12 percentage points, from 21% in 2021 to 33% in 2023.

The platforms with the widest age gaps were Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok—all three most popular with those under 30. As an example, 62% of 18- to 29-year-olds say they use TikTok, as opposed to 10% of adults ages 65 years and up. Young people also use the most platforms, with 74% using five different apps.

Pew’s report also showed trends among ethnicities, gender and education levels. Hispanics, women and those with college degrees were more likely to use Instagram. Hispanics also used TikTok at a higher rate than other ethnic groups while women (40%) used it more than men (25%).

Those with bachelor’s degrees or some college education were most likely to use LinkedIn, per the poll, while wealthier Americans were more likely to use X.

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