More Americans are finding it increasingly difficult to give up Facebook, Snapchat and other social media.
According to a survey published Thursday by the Pew Research Center, 40% of respondents said they would find it hard to give up social media, up from 28% four years ago.
The Pew survey also found the younger you are, the harder it is to part ways with social media. More than half (51%) of social media users age 18 to 24 said it would be hard to give up social media, compared to 40% of users ages 25 to 29. Users over 50 had the easiest time logging off, with 66% saying it would not be hard to give up social media.
While Facebook remains among the most popular social media services, its growth appears to have flattened, according to Pew. About 68% of U.S. adults say they use Facebook, trailing only YouTube at 73%.
Instagram is a distant third at 35%, while Pinterest (29%) and Snapchat (27%) round out the top five.
However, the Pew survey shows a large majority of users between the ages of 18 and 24 use Instagram and Snapchat. Findings show more than three-quarters of U.S. adults in that age bracket use Snapchat, while 71% are on Instagram.
As more Americans rely on social media, these platforms face increased scrutiny for how they handle issues including false information, meddling from foreign entities and online abuse.
On Thursday, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey acknowledged his platform’s issues with harassment, noting the company is determined to find fair solutions to address them.
“We have witnessed abuse, harassment, troll armies, manipulation through bots and human-coordination, misinformation campaigns, and increasingly divisive echo chambers,” wrote Dorsey in a series of tweets. “We aren’t proud of how people have taken advantage of our service, or our inability to address it fast enough.”
Meanwhile, lawmakers continue to press Facebook over its role in exposing its users to Russian-linked ads during the 2016 presidential election. Last week, a Facebook official said the company has made ads placed on the platform ready for public view.
The Pew survey was based on interviews conducted between Jan. 3-10, 2018, and included 2,002 adults, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.
Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.
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