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Social media fast: Almost two-thirds of people admit to taking a break from Facebook

Often without realising, we can lose a lot of time to social media, watching videos posted up on our walls, reading updates from our friends on Twitter and Facebook and thinking of witty new statuses to post on our pages.

Before you know it, you've lost a good 40-60 minutes of your day watching the new YouTube sensation or looking at the latest viral memes.

New findings from the Pew Research Center report, Coming and Going on Facebook, reveal that almost two-thirds (61 per cent) of current Facebook users have voluntarily taken a break from the website for a period of several weeks or more.

A majority of those (21 per cent) who said they had taken a break from Facebook said that they had done it as a result of "being too busy with other demands" or not having time to spend on the site.

Other reasons for users opting to take some time off include having a general lack of interest in Facebook (10 per cent), an "absence of compelling content" (10 per cent), excessive drama or gossip from their friends (9 per cent) or concerns of spending too much time on the site and needing to take a break (8 per cent).

The report pointed out that while many Facebook users took breaks from using the site, a vast majority of them (92 per cent according to Pew Internet's most recent findings) maintained a Facebook profile.

Nearly half of all adult internet users are said to access a social networking site on a typical day, with 69 per cent of online adults using a social networking site.

Social media users are also accessing these sites more than previously, with a survey conducted in November 2012 finding that 41 per cent of users said they access the sites several times a day – compared to the 33 per cent of users who accessed these sites at that level of frequency in August 2011.

Posted by April Revake.

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