42% of Internet users do not know what social networking is

Across the 17 global markets surveyed, 42% of people know what online social networking is, says Synovate. The Dutch were most likely to know the term with 89% answering ‘yes’, followed by Japan at 71% and Americans with 70% answering in the affirmative. 26% across the markets surveyed are members of social networking sites. This peaked with the Netherlands at 49%, United Arab Emirates (UAE) at 46%, Canada at 44% and the US at 40% (though keep in mind that’s 40% of a huge population).

Top social networking sites around the world

Overall, just over half the respondents who are members of social networking sites (51%) agreed that online social networking has its dangers. The Brazilians were the most nervous about online social networking with 79% agreeing there is danger, followed by the US (69%) and Poland (62%). Least concerned are Indians on 19%. Nervy networkers’ biggest concerns were lack of privacy (37%) closely followed by lack of security for children (32%). The Dutch were the most concerned about privacy at 54% and lack of security for children was the biggest worry for Americans with 62% of respondents nominating it.

Of the group who are members of social networking sites, only 26% are comfortable giving out personal details. This is led by 71% of Serbians and 57% of Indians. 85% of Japanese and German social networkers were uncomfortable handing out details, followed by 83% in Taiwan, 79% in Canada, 77% in Brazil and South Africa and 70% in Poland and the US. 53% of social networkers notice site sponsors. In good news for the sponsors, these seem to have the greatest impact in the US (where 66% notice), Serbia (65%) and Russia and Germany (both 64%).