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June 1, 2011

USA: Twitterverse: Mostly Black, Smart, and Older Than You Think

NEW YORK, NY / PC Magazine / Internet / June 1, 2011

By Sara Yin

Thirteen percent of adult Internet users in the U.S. are using Twitter, up from 8 percent half a year ago, according to a a new report from the Pew Internet and American Life Project.

"Twitter is becoming less of a place to read what people eat for breakfast and more of a place where people can go for meaningful content," said Aaron Smith, a senior researcher at Pew.

Furthermore, over half (53 percent) are accessing Twitter on their cell phones.

Broken down, there are slightly more men than women on Twitter (13 percent vs. 11 percent), most have gone to college (16 percent), most live in an urban area (15 percent), and half earn more than $50,000 a year.

It's well-documented that most Twitter users are minorities, but Pew says the gap between African-Americans—the largest represented group—and white users is growing. In May 2011, there were 16 percentage points more African-Americans than whites on Twitter (25 percent African-American versus 9 percent white). Last November the racial divide was only 8 percent (13 percent African-American versus 5 percent white). One in 10 African-American Internet users visit Twitter every day, double the rate of Latinos and nearly four times the rate for whites, according to Pew.

There are also more older adults adopting Twitter than ever before: those in the 30-49 year old bracket doubled to 14 percent from 7 percent last November.

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