6 Surprising New Findings About Social Media, Email And IT Usage

Several recent university studies have exposed some surprising findings about social network, email, and IT usage.

Recent studies have exposed some surprising findings about the
use of social media, email, and enterprise IT products. The studies found that:


Facebook use lowers GPA
In a study at a large Midwestern university, Facebook users reported lower
grade point averages (GPAs) and spent fewer hours a week studying than
non-users. Researchers Paul Kirschner and Aryn Karpinkski followed
219 students for 2 academic quarters and correlated Facebook usage to grade
point performance. The results were published in Computers in Human Behavior
in a paper entitled, “Facebook and Academic Performance.”

· Twitter use fosters real
social connection
— Extended Twitter use increases a person’s gratification
of the need to be connected with other users. Researcher Gina Masullo Chen studied 317 Twitters and concludes
that Twitter is “not just virtual noise of people talking at each other, but
that it is a medium that people actively seek out to gratify a need to connect
with other.” The study was recently published in  Computers in Human Behavior,
in a paper entitled, “Tweet This: A Uses and Gratifications Perspective on How
Active Twitter Use Gratifies a Need to Connect with Others.”

Email remains king
here are some key findings:


According to the Pew
Internet Report
, email remains the number one online activity, with 94% of
online people using email.

reports that corporate end users send and receive an average of
110 email messages per day.

At work, enterprise users
prefer email over alternatives. Researcher Michal Laclavik and associates recently
reported in the journal, Computing
and Informatics
, that “in spite of rapid advances in multimedia and
interactive technologies, enterprise users prefer to battle with email spam and
overload rather than lose the benefits of communicating, collaborating and solving
business tasks over email.” Users are adopting new strategies for analyzing and
extracting information rather than abandoning email. The findings were published
in a paper entitled, “Email Analysis and Information Extraction for Enterprise


Older workers react
more positively to implementation of IT initiatives than their younger
, contradicting conventional beliefs that older adults resist
IT innovation.” Researcher Tracey E. Rizzuto,
studied 286 enterprise users of a new IT system (SAP Procurement) and measured
satisfaction. Results were recently
published in Computers in Human
in a study entitled, “Age and Technology Innovation in the
Workplace: Does Work Context Matter?”



About the author

A technology strategist for an enterprise software company in the collaboration and social business space. I am particularly interested in studying how people, organizations, and technology interact, with a focus on why particular technologies are successfully adopted while others fail in their mission. In my 'spare' time, I am pursuing an advanced degree in STS (Science, Technology, and Society), focusing on how social collaboration tools impact our perceptions of being overloaded by information. I am an international scholar for the Society for the History of Technology.