Teens are ditching Facebook for YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, study confirms

The kids are online, but definitely not where their parents hang out.

Erin Carson Former Senior Writer
Erin Carson covered internet culture, online dating and the weird ways tech and science are changing your life.
Expertise Erin has been a tech reporter for almost 10 years. Her reporting has taken her from the Johnson Space Center to San Diego Comic-Con's famous Hall H. Credentials
  • She has a master's degree in journalism from Syracuse University.
Erin Carson

Ninety-five percent of teenagers have smartphone access. 

Hero Images/Getty

In case you had any doubts, teenagers are using social media. A lot.

According to a Pew Research Center study out Thursday, 45 percent of US youths, ages 13 to 17, say they're online almost constantly. Compare that with the 26 percent of adults from a Pew study in March who said the same. 

Oh, and only 51 percent of teenagers are using Facebook. They're way more likely to head to YouTube (85 percent), Instagram (72 percent) and Snapchat (69 percent). 

The disparity is even more dramatic when asked which one site they use most often: YouTube (32 percent,) Instagram (15 percent), Snapchat (35 percent) and Facebook (10 percent). Even fewer teens cited Twitter, Reddit or Tumblr as the site they visit most often, said the study.

The obsession is made possible by access to smartphones. A whopping 95 percent say they have a smartphone or have access to one. What's more, the teens don't have a solid opinion about whether that's good or bad -- 45 percent said social media's effect on their lives is neither positive nor negative. 

First published May 31, 8:39 a.m. PT.
Update, June 1 at 6:33 a.m. PT: Adds more information from Pew study.