Internet users have doubled the time they spend on social networking pages in the past year, according to new research from the Nielsen Group.
The analyst firm found that internet users spent 110 billion minutes on social networking sites, including blogs, in April, equating to almost a quarter of all web time.
The average user spent two thirds more time online than they did a year ago, almost six hours in April compared to three and a half hours during the same month in 2009.
The average UK user spent five hours and 52 minutes looking at blogs and social sites in April. Facebook, a favourite across all geographies, took up six hours and 19 minutes of the average UK surfer's web time during the month, reaching almost two thirds of all web users.
"Facebook's reach is the widest in Italy, capturing two-thirds of the active unique audience in April 2010, making the site relatively more popular in Italy than in the three major English-speaking markets," said the Nielsen Group.
"Australia, the US and the UK follow with over 60 per cent of active online consumers visiting the site."
The top six most visited online brands are Google, MSN/Windows Live/Bing, Facebook, Yahoo, Microsoft and YouTube.
Google is visited by 82 per cent of all web users, Facebook by 54 per cent, YouTube by 47 per cent and Wikipedia by 35 per cent.
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