Have a computer, Internet connection, and no Facebook profile? Now you’re the weirdo outcast. In a new study done by the Pew Research Center, collections of data from thousands of participants showed that people who use social networking services are now not only likely to have larger networks than those who don’t, but also have more close friends. The authors of the study don’t cite technology as the cause of our newfound friendliness, but those inclined toward social connections are now more likely to be online and networking than not.
For the study, Pew surveyed 2,255 American adults in October and November of 2010, and found that of 1,787 Internet users, 975 of them, or 47 percent of the total, use a social networking service such as Facebook (92 percent), LinkedIn (18 percent), Twitter (13 percent), or MySpace (29 percent). Pew followed up with a barrage of questions to detail how people used the services, and how their use correlated with the personal choices and aspects of their social lives.