Social networking more popular than porn?

With the world’s financial systems collapsing around our ears and strange monsters washed up on New York beaches you might be thinking the world couldn’t get much stranger.

Well prepare for a shocker: Bill Tancer at Hitwise reports that social networking has overtaken porn as the most visited website category on the net for 18-24 year-olds.

His new book, ‘Click: What Millions of People are Doing Online and Why It Matters’, claims that the 33% drop in visits to adult entertainment sites over the past three years shows a fundamental shift in how people are using the internet – pointing to the fact that webmail’s also slipped down the ranks to back this up.

I’ve got to agree with Tancer’s conclusion – not so much that this age group are spending the majority of their time on Facebook et al, but that social networks are becoming most people’s preferred way to stay in touch over good old standalone email.

I might be the wrong side of the age bracket but my gmail account’s probably feeling a bit neglected since I joined Facebook. After all, when I’ve got almost all my friends and family in one place, why would I bother going somewhere else to send them a message?

Check out Bill Tancer’s blog post at TIME

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