It’s Generation X, not millennials, who are obsessed with Facebook and Instagram

“King of Snapchat” DJ Khaled is a Gen Xer.
“King of Snapchat” DJ Khaled is a Gen Xer.
Image: AP Images/Diane Bondareff/Invision for Palmer's
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Generation X, a cohort of people loosely defined as being currently between the ages of 35 and 49, spend more time on social platforms during an average week than any other US adult age group, a new study by Nielsen (pdf) found.

They spent an average of 6 hours and 58 minutes per week on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other platforms, on average 39 more minutes than millennials.

The data collected by Nielsen represented 9,000 US Nielsen panelists, ages 18 and up, based on their media consumption on smartphones, mobile browsers, and desktop computers during September 2016. Their activity was measured passively through their devices to eliminate any biases from self-reporting.

While Gen-Xers spend more time than millennials on social media in actual hours, they actually spend less time as percentage of the total amount of media consumed, the report found.

The average US adult studied between the ages of 35 to 49 spent 31 hours and 40 minutes per week watching TV, listening to the radio, using TV-connected devices like game consoles and Rokus, and consuming other media on computers, smartphones, and tablets. Social media made up about 22% of that time.

Among millennials, social media made up 24% of the 26 hours and 49 minutes the average millennial spent consuming all forms of media per week.

The study does leave one big unknown—the newest generation.

The young cohort, under the age of 18, was raised on social media and would arguably be savvier users than their older counterparts. With fewer obligations, those who are old enough to use social media platforms might also have more time to spend Snapping, tweeting, and Instagramming.

CNN reported in 2015 that teens spent about 9 hours consuming media on an average day, which would amount to a whopping 63 hours per week—far more than Gen-X or millennials.