A research company has been looking at who around the world writes blogs, and who uses Twitter for social networking. The results may surprise you: Almost a third of bloggers are in the U.S., yet over 50% of Twitterers are American.
Sysomos surveyed over 100 million blog posts to produce their data, looking for age, gender, and location information. While its fascinating to learn that slightly over 50% of bloggers are female, and the 21- to 35-year-old age band is the most populated (over 53% of bloggers are this age), the location data is the most interesting material in the results.
The U.S.A. accounts for most bloggers—with 29.2% of blogs being produced in the U.S., which is some four times greater than the number two country, the U.K., with 6.75% of blogs being British. Japan occupies the third place with 4.9%, and Brazil has fourth place with 4.2%.
While the U.S. dominates many Net technologies, and English is the de facto global Web language (as well as being the most spoken language around the world), the fact that nearly a third of bloggers are American and the second place is taken up by the U.K. isn't surprising. What is surprising is the absence of Spanish-language-speaking blogs, given that Spanish is one of the most frequently spoken languages around the world. Spain itself occupies eighth place in the table with just 3.1% of blogs, and there're not other Spanish-speaking sites in the top 15 blogging nations. China-based blogs aren't represented in the list for self-evident reasons, given the oppressive anti free-speech stance of the Chinese government.
Sysomos surveyed 13 million Twitter accounts in the final three months of 2009, also. They discovered that 50.9% of Twitterers are in the U.S., with the U.K. in third place in this survey with just 7.2% of Twitterers, and Brazil occupying the second place with 8.8% of Twitterers.
You could examine the cultural or socio-economic indicators, like how many of the worlds less-developed nations have ubiquitous access to the Net. But comparing Twitter use with the blogging stats shows clearly that short status-message posting is more popular in the U.S. than writing blogs, and use of English dominates Twitter even more than it does the blogging world, perhaps a reflection of how regionalized Twitter's offerings were for a long time, and that it may naturally trend toward a co-located or at least common-country basis.
But the disparity between blogging and tweeting in the U.S. may also be an indication of the news-breaking trend on Twitter. Blogging is now embraced by the traditional news-delivery world and Twitter is heading in that direction, too. This is exactly the sort of data that'll likely prove extraordinarily useful for folks in the PR industry, and no doubt sociology researchers the world over will find it enough material for serious academic research.
And there are other, less-favorable suggestions made by the data. Twitter is full of more vacuous chatter than even the once overly opinionated, thin-on-genuine-substance blogosphere. And that the socially happy U.S. population are generating a lion's share of the world's social fluff.
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