How do you use Facebook according to your age

Tell us how you use Facebook and we will tell you how old you are, or at least, we can make an estimate, thanks to a new study published by researchers at the University of North Dakota.

Older adults are attracted to Facebook to see photos and updates from family and friends, but tend to resist using this social network because they are concerned about who can see its content, according to new research.

"The biggest concern of seniors is privacy and not to reveal too much, but because they believe that there are too many people out there who could use your information at will," says the co-director of Penn's Media Research Lab State, S. Shyam Sundar. "Privacy has to do with the degree of control you feel you have about how your information is shared or distributed."

The researchers interviewed 46 participants who were between 65 and 95 years old. The group included 17 male participants and 29 female participants, all of them with a university degree. All claimed to use a computer daily.

The participants argued to keep in touch, to be aware of the updates of their contacts and to share photos as main reasons to use Facebook. However, the older adults in the study mentioned privacy, as well as the triviality of some posts, as reasons why they stayed away from the site.

According to this, Facebook would need to implement clearer privacy control tools to promote its use in older adults. What indicates, on the other hand, that young people are increasingly concerned about their privacy and, in general, do not consider it a factor to take into account when using a social network.

However, this does not mean that older adults do not enjoy the Facebook experience. While senior users are concerned about who is looking at their publications, at the same time they enjoy using the site to look at photos and read messages from friends and family, according to the researchers.

The study revealed that young people post more; instead, older people prefer to watch what their contacts do.

"I have not posted anything in years, I do not need to say: 'I'm eating!' I do not understand that type of communication", said one participant to the researchers.

The researchers, who report their findings in the journal Telematics and Informatics, warned Facebook developers that they should focus on setting up privacy to take advantage of the market for older people.

The researchers suggest that Facebook is helping to serve as a communication bridge between generations and that young people are encouraging older family members to join the site. In particular, unlike young people, most older adults were encouraged by younger family members to join Facebook so they can communicate.

Maintaining older users could be a significant resource to help drive the growth of Facebook and other social networks.

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