About six months ago I started having a fairly extended discussion with my girlfriend over the merits and setbacks of older adults getting onto Facebook. The prospect never thrilled her, and that attitude seems to be the norm.
An older generation’s slow adoption of Facebook never thrilled me either, but for entirely different reasons. I simply can’t stand the way they talk about it. Yes, I’m generalizing in a big way here, but the type thirty-somethings that will sit in bars and restaurants talking about how cool it is to reconnect with a high school girlfriend after a messy divorce invite just this sort of criticism. Truthfully, Facebook never thrilled me. I was already in touch with the people I really wanted to be in touch with. I’m not the type of person who likes to have intermittent contact with hundreds of people. What I’ve found Facebook most useful for is answering the questions you don’t want to answer at family reunions. Add my aunts and uncles and they know what I’m doing, where I’m living, and can see what few pictures I post. Family reunions have never been less painful.
My generation, certainly including some of those who used to love Facebook, are shying away from the social site as their parents warm up to it. In fact, just 50% of the 15-24 crowd is checking Facebook regularly, compared to 55% last year. By contrast, 46% of 25- to 34-year-olds are now regulars, up from 40% last year. It’s worth pointing out that these age groups are still using the internet, but the 15-24s have moved their usage time away from Facebook and on to other, more interesting things.
The sub-16 age group is still going strong, likely looking for a place to branch out and experiment with structuring their identity through the online social site. You can expect those numbers to drop as kids get older and realize their parents are using the same site like one big holiday greeting card.
My question to you, dear readers, is how do you spend your Facebook time? Has it evolved over time? Do you use it as often as when you started? Have you quit the site altogether? Sound off in the comments.
Source: The Guardian