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College students more prone to thoughtless social posts than high schoolers, study says

A new survey -- conducted for a firm that recently brought its private social-networking app to the US -- also shows that teens are tired of the lack of reality on sites like Facebook.

Is it F for Fake on social media, as far as young people are concerned? Aquul/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Social media just isn't real.

Yes, you thought that everyone was just being themselves, but teens, those extrasensory beings, are fed up with all the flimflam and fluff that's all over their Twitters and Facebooks.

I take this information from a new survey. It says 69 percent of the 812 young people aged 13-22 insisted that they're very rarely themselves on social media. It's not clear who they actually are on social media. They can't all be Beyoncé and Jay-Z, can they?

This sense of an inauthentic virtual world has apparently caused them to post less. 66 percent said they had cut back.

Boys, though, will be big-mouths. In this survey, they were 70 percent more likely than girls to claim they posted everything about themselves, unedited.

Still, this quaint clinging to a need for their friends to be more real on social media smacks of a touching idealism. 63 percent said that they found it very tough to read their friends' "fluff" online. But they still presumably read it. It's a social convention, after all.

You might imagine that the older that young people get, the more perspective they have on the world, and therefore the social world.

College students were, indeed. more likely than high schoolers (56 versus 47 percent) to look at their friends' fluffery and punish them with a defriending.

But don't think that age really equals wisdom (just look at any politician). At the same time as supposedly having no tolerance for slapdash nonsense, college students were more likely than high schoolers (31 percent versus 23 percent) to post things online without thinking.

How odd that colleges haven't thought to make money with a Self-Awareness 101 course.

Always with surveys, though, one wonders about their sponsors. This one, conducted by Harris Interactive between July 31 and August 14, was funded by the South Korea-based Naver corporation. Astonishingly, a Naver subsidiary, Camp Mobile, launched a US version of its private social-networking app called Band earlier this month.

A press release for the survey informs me that the reason for the study is because Camp Mobile parent Naver "is continuing to invest in understanding social-media behaviors and perceptions among US teens and young adults in anticipation these new findings signal growing opportunity for group-based sharing platforms and apps." And according to another press release, on the launch, Camp Mobile believes apps like Band "better mirror how people socialize offline."

That may well be true. How odd, though, to think that when people socialize offline, they are somehow more authentic.

Darling, what a lovely dress! Where DID you get it?

I love Hamish! No, really! He's one of my best friends!

It was WONDERFUL to meet you! I'll call you next week.

And how often does the call come?