YouTube growth spikes as most other social media sites stagnate

YouTube on a smartphone

Not only is YouTube the most commonly used social media site, but it’s also growing much faster than other social media platforms since 2019, a new survey has found.

Except for YouTube and Reddit, most social media hasn’t grown very much since 2019 — not even Facebook, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center.

An eye-popping 81% of Americans said they use the video-sharing site, up from 73% in 2019.

Reddit was the only other platform that saw statistically significant growth during the same period, albeit on a smaller scale because Reddit is more of a niche site. Reddit use increased from 11% in 2019 to 18% today, the survey found.

Facebook’s growth has leveled off over the last five years, but it remains one of the most widely used social media sites among adults in the US. Nearly 70% of adults today are on Facebook — an impressive number, but the same as two years ago.

In the same vein, the number of Americans who reported using Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Snapchat and WhatsApp are statistically unchanged since 2019.

Pew Research says this reflects a broader trend: The rapid expansion of social media sites that we saw over the last decade has slowed down significantly.

TikTok use is obviously expanding, but it isn’t on this list because the Pew Research Center didn’t even ask about TikTok during the 2019 survey.

Most of the poll’s results aren’t surprising: Most Americans use YouTube and Facebook, while Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok use is especially common among people in their teens and 20s.

Instagram attracts 40% of Americans, while 31% of Americans are on Pinterest and LinkedIn, 25% are on Snapchat, and 23% are on Twitter and WhatsApp. Newcomer TikTok has 21% share of Americans surveyed, and Nextdoor has 13%.

As always with these kinds of social media surveys, there are some noticeable age differences. A whopping 84% of Americans ages 18 to 29 are on social media compared to 81% of Americans ages 30 to 49. In comparison, 73% of people ages 50 to 64 use social media, while only 45% of those 65 and older do.