Like them or loathe them, social networking services, or SNS for short, have become an integral part of our daily lives and society as a whole. While Facebook, Twitter and Naver Corp’s Line offer very different experiences, most users will agree that without them, they’d feel lost, or at least have a sudden and unexpected amount of free time on their hands.
Recently, a survey was conducted in Japan which asked respondents about the services they used, asking them which they turned to most often, which they were most careful about using and sharing information on, and which they’d hate to be without.
Comparatively speaking, Japan was fairly late to board the Facebook train, with many people as little as two years ago saying that the idea of putting their personal information online “for anyone to see” was a disturbing one. Now, however, along with a boom in Twitter users no doubt helped along by the 2010 drama "Sunao ni Narenakute," in which the main characters spent much of their time communicating in 140 characters or fewer, Facebook has become as much a part of life in Japan as in most other countries. Naver’s Line, too, has been leapt on by thrifty smartphone users over the last 18 months owing to its free and unlimited text messages and data voice calls, not to mention the dozens of cutesy “stickers” that can be bought and shared using the service.
But which of the “big three” – namely Twitter, Facebook and Line – does Japan love most? Which gets the most daily attention, and, if they had to give two of the services up, which service would win out in the end?
Japan’s Fast-Ask surveyed 680 men and women aged between 10 and 50 who used all three of the aforementioned services with questions about them. Here’s what they learned.
The SNS that respondents said they used most on a daily basis turned out to be Line (40.4%), followed by Twitter (32.6%), and Facebook (23.5%). Of these responses, however, nearly 50% of those aged 10-20 chose Twitter as their most-used service, while 37% of those in their 40s spent more time with Facebook.
When asked which of the three services they most used as a method for contacting people, Line again came in first place with 71.8% of the total votes. What was most interesting here, though, was that 91.8% of those aged 10-20 said that they turned to Line when they needed to get in touch with others, suggesting that for the younger generation, fast messaging means much more than things like status updates, photos of your cat or “Look Back” slideshows. Despite having an equally good messaging service and even a separate messaging application for those who want it, Facebook, the second-ranking service in this category won a mere 14% of the vote.
The responses to the following question stuck out as particularly interesting, however. When asked which of the three services they most worried about or took care when using, almost half of the respondents pointed to Facebook, no doubt because of the plethora of information that could potentially be obtain from a single account and its more personal nature than the other two. So while Facebook may have become hugely popular in Japan, it would seem that people are still, perhaps understandably, wary of the service.
The SNS Japanese people most worry about? Facebook, by a long shot.
More than half (59.5% to be exact) of those aged 40-50 chose Facebook as the SNS to take extra care with, while those aged 10-20 said that they were more mindful when using Line, with 39% of them choosing Naver’s messaging service instead.
Finally, when asked which SNS they’d be most troubled to go without, Line took the gold with 49% of the vote, followed by Twitter (18.7%), and Facebook (17.8%), suggesting that while photos of people pretending to kiss a made-up girlfriend and shared links to articles about cats failing are all well and good, what the people of Japan most seem to want is the simple ability to chat with their pals. Well, that and send them unbearably cute stickers of bunnies and bears holding hearts, obviously.
Source: My Navi News
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