#social media has continued to grow in adoption and the same could be said about the advancements in technology. In spite of all of the sophistication and increased integration into all the different industries social media had its darkest year to date.

The controversy with the proliferation of fake news and the unprecedented shift for how Twitter played an important role altogether changed the dynamics of the American election. The Pew Research Center (PRC), nonpartisan American fact tank, released recent findings on how much all of the different social networks have grown and evolved over time.

The PEC started tracking social media adoption and growth over time in 2005, and just 5 percent of American adults utilized it.

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By 2011 the number of U.S adults using social media reached 69 percent.

Demographics, popular social networks and usage frequency

When social media and smartphone devices started to take off young adults were the early adopters. However, in recent years and conforming to the PEC findings the distribution has increased across all age groups with older adults getting in on the action.

When it comes to measuring which social networking site is the most popular #Facebook leads the way. As of last year close to 70 percent of U.S adults use Facebook. The other major platforms include Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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Surprisingly, Instagram has grown its user base surpassing longtime microblogging company Twitter.

How often are Americans connected on social media? The data suggests that three-quarters of Facebook users and around half of Instagram users make a routine visit on these platforms at least once a day.

This analysis does not include the exponential growth that Snapchat has experienced with the younger generation of users. Webbiquity.com analysis found Snapchat users share approximately 285,000 snaps.

Evolving role of social media and websites

These new social platforms in 2017 are going to undergo major scrutiny and revision. Why? Simply because the rise of fake news and the misinformation reported does pose a problem about the legitimacy and validity of these services.

Their rise to power has a lot to do with the lack of media coverage and the disappearance of the once successful commercial enterprise of newspapers.

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As reported by PEC in the middle of 2016, campaigns were a direct source of news and bypassed traditional media. This means voters were going to get information that was never verified or fact-checked by major journalism outlets.

Takeaways and conclusions

Social media networking has become a way of life and a medium to communicate. It has facilitated users to become communicators and reporters. This allowed for all sorts of content to be shared and blurred the lines of work of professional journalists.