InternetNews Realtime IT News - Pew: Twitter a Status Symbol on the Web: "February 13, 2009
By Kenneth Corbin: The microblogging phenomenon is inching a little closer to mainstream.
Researchers at the Pew Internet and American Life Project polled Internet users and found that 11 percent are using Twitter and similar short-form online message services or status updates.
Pew conducted a similar survey in May 2008, asking Internet users about their usage of Twitter and other microblogging services such as Yammer. The recent survey asked respondents if they used Twitter or any other online service that allowed them to update their status, a common feature on social networking sites.
'Facebook and its ilk are clearly playing a big part here,' Amanda Lenhart, a co-author of the report, told InternetNews.com.
The most recent survey, taken in December, found a sharp increase in uptake of Twitter-like services. In a similar study just the previous month, nine percent of Internet users said they were using online services to update their status. In the more targeted study in May, when Pew limited the focus to microblogging services, six percent answered in the affirmative.
Profiling the Twitter set, Pew found that they are prone to mobile computing, frequently dashing off status updates from their smartphones or laptops using a wireless connection.
Broken down by age group, the study's demographic findings follow a predictable line. Young people are far more likely to update their status online than older Internet users.Roughly 20 percent of online adults between the ages of 18 and 34 said they use status-update services, compared with four percent of adults between the ages of 55 and 64, and just four percent of those 65 and older. "