Social media dominated by women

More women network online

Online networking is more popular with women than men, according to the results of a new study.

Web monitoring service Pingdom analysed 19 of the most popular social media sites, including Twitter, Facebook, Bebo, MySpace, LinkedIn, Delicious and Last.fm. Using US demographics data gleaned from Google Ad Planner, it discovered that 16 of the sites had more female users than male. The social news providers Slashdot, Reddit and Digg were the only sites bucking the trend.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, Bebo had the highest proportion of female users (66 per cent), followed closely by MySpace and Classmates.com (both 64 per cent). And there wasn't much to choose between Twitter (59 per cent) and Facebook (57 per cent).

Mixed response from commentators

Responding to the findings, former internet consultant John Williams said that he was not surprised, adding: "I think women on average are drawn to create community more readily." However, other commentators questioned whether the results could be trusted. For example, Chris said: "My immediate thought is that there are lots of fake female profiles on social networking sites. Whether it's spammers, scammers or men pretending to be women, I'm willing to bet that there are a lot more fake women."

In related news, Facebook is currently testing another redesign of its homepage. The UK's most popular social networking portal has moved user status updates onto the same page as the live news feed for the first time. And it has shifted the search box to the middle of the page, which could greatly enhance the profile of its internal real-time search engine.

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