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Teens, Young Adults Think Peers Share Too Much Online

Over 80% say those their age reveal too much info online

November 25, 2014

Younger consumers are calling out their peers for digital oversharing. In an August 2014 study by Camp Mobile, 81% of US teens and young adult internet users felt people their age shared too much information online—and the majority of that group “strongly” agreed that this was the case.

US Teen and Young Adult Internet Users Who Feel People Their Age Share Too Much Online, Aug 2014 (% of respondents)

However, this may change soon as a result of security and privacy concerns around online sharing—who wants to risk having the wrong person find out all of their personal details? More than two in five (42%) 13- to 22-year-olds said they were sharing less online than they had two years ago, compared with just 17% who had increased these actions.

Of course, even if they’re able to cut out some of the noise, younger consumers won’t stop sharing info online completely. Camp Mobile found that teen and young adult internet users were all about photos when sharing content on social media—they’re not often referred to as the selfie generation for nothing. Those ages 13 to 22 were most likely to post pictures of themselves (60% of respondents), with photos of friends and family the second most popular content type.

Types of Content Shared on Social Media by US Teen and Young Adult Internet Users, by Demographic, Aug 2014 (% of respondents in each group)

Photos weren’t the only thing getting airtime on teen and young adults’ social pages. Half were perfectly fine with revealing personal information about what they were doing or regarding school or work. Some good news: Respondents were much less likely to post angry messages to people (10%), and ranting, too, wasn’t all that common.

eMarketer estimates that 97.0% of 12- to 17-year-olds and 94.6% of 18- to 24-year-olds in the US will use the internet this year, with respective social media penetration rates among these groups coming in at 86.5% and 94.0%. While there’s little doubt many will continue to share information online, Camp Mobile’s results indicate that those in this group may keep a closer eye on how many details they reveal to the world.

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