Are we growing addicted to social media? Think about how much time you spend on blogs, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, LinkedIn and YouTube. And then think about whether the time spent has been growing.
According to comScore, the average online user in the U.S. spends 16% of their time on social media – a 25% increase from last year and a 100% jump from 2007.
The question is whether the growing amount of time is just a matter of social media becoming more popular and an integral part of our lives, or whether we’re becoming addicted to social media.
It is probably a combination of both factors. There is no doubt that over the past three or four years social media has become more popular. Facebook has gone mainstream with more than 660 million users, Twitter has more than 200 million users, and LinkedIn has more than 100 million users.
At the same time, people are consuming more service media. Facebook users spend nearly six hours a month on the service, and nearly six hours watching online videos. Many young people now check Facebook before they get out of bed in the morning.
The use of social media is being exacerbated/encouraged by the growing use of smartphones and high-speed wireless networks, which has made it easier to use LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, and watch videos. It means we have access to social media anytime and anywhere.
The question is have we become addicted to social media? Think about often you check your Facebook status or what’s happening on Twitter. Think about the last time you went a day without using social media.
There is no doubt social media has become as ubiquitous as traditional media in an astounding short period of time. But has it become too much of a good thing?
In other words, are we addicted to social media? And is this a good or bad thing?
For more thoughts on whether we’re addicted to social media, check out Steve Olenski’s blog post.