The Use Of Twitter By The Teen Demographic

    August 6, 2009

Yeah, yeah, yeah—I’m sure we can all name some anecdotal evidence of teens who either hate Twitter or who can’t get off it. But by and large, according to a new Nielsen report, teens just aren’t on Twitter.

Or are they? The chart from the report looks at users on (as opposed to on phones or desktop clients):


Let’s start with the facts: In June of this year, teens and young adults made up 25% of the online population, which means that they’re disproportionately not using Twitter. Or I can accept that.

But the chart on the other hand looks a little misleading. Let’s start with the age bands—technically, you’re supposed to be 13 to use Twitter (doubtful that they can enforce the TOS, but, hey, let’s humor them). If we assume (probably incorrectly, but that’s kind of moot) that the distribution in the 25-54 range is roughly equal and readjust the age banding accordingly, then we get:

lie with statistics

Yes, teens and young adults are still slightly underrepresented. But remember this leaves out entirely everyone using phones to Tweet—and if I had to guess, I’d say that the same age group was slightly overrepresented on mobile usage.

Are teens not on Twitter? Maybe. The comments on Mashable point to at least one possible explanation—teens want to share personal information, but they want the granular privacy controls Facebook offers.

What do you think? Are teens on Twitter? If not, why not?