Through casual repetition, stereotypes can gain some loose-handed credibility as fact. This is why stereotypes are problematic. For example, tell me if you’ve heard this one in some variation: “Millennials can’t survive without their phones. They aren’t just obsessed with their Twitter and Snapchats, they’re full-blown social media addicts.”
However, a recent Neilson study reveals that millennials aren’t the worst generation when it comes to social media consumption. The real addicts: Generation X.
Surprisingly, the heavy social media user group isn’t Millennials. In fact, Generation X (ages 35-49) spends the most time on social media: almost 7 hours per week versus Millennials, who come in second, spending just over 6 hours per week.
According to Bloomberg, the study took place in Q3 of 2016, and “took into account 9,000 smartphone and 1,300 tablet users across the country. The media activity was measured passively to avoid any self-reporting bias.” Comparatively, those ages 50s and above (which includes boomers), were reported of using four hours a week on social media.
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Also relevant was how users interact with social media during TV consumption. There too the data demonstrates that Gen X are more likely to post on Facebook (42%) while watching content than millennials (40%). Facebook is also the No. 1 social media network choice for mobile and desktop users.
So maybe mom and dad should check themselves before telling their children to get off their phones and Facebook. We’re all in this social media-addicted world together.