Study: Reddit used by 6 percent of adult Internet users

Study: Reddit used by 6 percent of adult Internet users
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POSTED: Saturday, July 6, 2013 - 12:00pm

UPDATED: Saturday, July 6, 2013 - 12:04pm

Sprawling online bulletin board Reddit is especially popular with young men, according to a new study. Six percent of all adults on the Internet use Reddit, and it is most popular with men between 18 and 29 -- 15% of whom frequent the site.

The survey was conducted by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project, an ongoing effort to study the how Americans' use of the Internet is evolving and the impact it has on their lives.

In a telephone survey of 2,252 adults, Pew found that men were twice as likely as women to use Reddit and that the site's popularly dropped significantly with the 50-and-older age group.

On the social news site and meme factory, people share links, photos and original content in themed sections, called subreddits. The posts are then voted up or down by the community. The 5,360 active subreddits cover a wide range of topics, including politics, corgis, Starcraft, conspiracy theories and parenting.

Recent news events have pushed the site into the spotlight.

Redditors helped uncover pieces of Aurora, Colorado, shooter James Holmes' online identity. Its boards are being used to organize protests against NSA privacy violations for the Fourth of July. And after the Boston Marathon bombings, members of the community attempted to do amateur investigating using public photos from the scene.

Multiple people were wrongly identified as suspects by the community, prompting an apology from Reddit's general manager.

One of the most popular and visible Reddit features is the Ask Me Anything (AMA) question-and-answer session. It has featured big-name actors, politicians, CEOs, an astronaut still in space, and even President Barack Obama.

Launched in 2005 by Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian, Reddit has grown into an influential site with a wide reach. It had more than 70 million visitors in June from 183 different countries, according to the site's own stats. Those people visited a staggering 4.5 billion pages. 

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