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Live in America? Breathing? Have an Internet Connection? You're Probably On YouTube

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, July 26 2011

If you live in the United States and have an Internet connection and a pulse, odds are you use a video sharing site like YouTube, according to research released this morning by the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

Past studies have predicted that new media, and particularly the ability to create it, will become increasingly important to civic conversations. This research indicates that online video has already become an integral part of daily life for many Americans.

The Pew research, the result of a tracking survey of nearly 2,300 adult Internet users conducted this past spring, finds that 71 percent of Internet users visit video-sharing sites. On a given day, 28 percent of Internet users will be on YouTube or a YouTube-like substance, the study shows.

Concurrent with past research that has shown black and Hispanic Americans are more likely to own smartphones or use social media and blogs to connect with their neighbors, the study shows that people of color with Internet access are more likely than their white counterparts to use online video. Pew's analysis of broadband usage in the U.S. in 2010 — going out on a limb and assuming you're more likely to be using a video sharing site if you've got broadband Internet than if you're on dial-up — found that 67 percent of white people and 56 percent of black people were broadband Internet users. This was a smaller gap than in 2009, when 65 percent of white people and 46 percent of black people had broadband access.

The video-sharing study also shows that 68 percent of rural Internet users use online video sites — comparable to 72 percent of online urban residents and 71 percent of online suburbanites — proving that living in the country doesn't mean being disconnected from the rest of the nation.