Mike Bantick writes in his blog iTWire Sunday, 24 January 2010 that Facebook, Twitter and other social based internet systems saw massive increases in usage through 2009. Despite having some of the best weather for getting outside, Australians lead the world in spending time on social networks according to The Nielsen Company.
Helge: Let’s have a look what they are doing online. Need to call my brother Helmer in Sidney to learn how he thinks about the local online activities.
2009 was a big one for social networking online. The latest Nielsen Company numbers showed the continuing trend for social networks has not waned in the past two years.
Figures just released for December 2009 showed an increase of 82 percent in time spent in social network sites such as Facebook and Twitter over the previous year. On average in December 2008, social networkers spent just over three hours, this increased to more than five and a half hours in December 2009.
Helge: Do people have more time for online engagements and activities due to the global recession. Are we looking for new jobs, contacts and opportunities?
According to The Nielsen Company: Globally, social networks and blogs are the most popular online category when ranked by average time spent in December, followed by online games and instant messaging. With 206.9 million unique visitors, Facebook was the No. 1 global social networking destination in December 2009 and 67% of global social media users visited the site during the month. Time on site for Facebook has also been on the rise, with global users spending nearly six hours per month on the site.
Helge: I guess we are moving in the same direction. I don’t have comparable figures. Maybe they can be found through the reference information.
In the battle(!) to see which countries population spends the most time online socially, Australia topped the table with a average time per person of 6 hours 52 minutes and 28 seconds racked up during December 2009. Perhaps it is the tyranny of distance for a small population spread over such a vast geography that entices Australians to keep in touch online.
Helge: I figure that big countries with long distances between villages and people lead to increased online activity. USA and Canada are big as well. Finland has a small population in a large country.
By comparison US folks hit 6:09, the United Kingdom notched 6:07 and Italians came in fourth spending just over six hours Facebook’n, Twittering or Myspace’n at the end of last year.
Helge: We’ve national platforms as well so the figures aren’t comparable with English speaking countries.
Of the popular social networks, using US based data, The Nielsen Company charted the rise of both Facebook, and in particular Twitter over the past year: both Facebook and Twitter.com, outpaced the overall growth for the category, increasing 200% and 368%, respectively. Among, the top five U.S. social networking sites, Twitter.com continued its reign as the fastest-growing in December 2009 in terms of unique visitors, increasing 579% year-over-year, from 2.7 million unique visitors in December 2008 to 18.1 million in December 2009. However, month-over-month, unique visitors decreased 5%.
Helge: I guess both Twitter and Facebook are growing here as well. Qaiku is a better service for online collaboration but it’s still a local / national thing.