In April-May 2015, CRRC-Georgia carried out a representative survey of the adult population of Georgia for Transparency International Georgia. The survey contained a number of questions on Internet and social media usage, and the results show us who is online, what people are doing online, who is using social networks, and which networks people use most.
The young, educated, Tbilisi residents, and employed report using the Internet more frequently than other Georgians. Most of Georgia’s elderly (56+) never use the Internet - only 19%, 7% and 5% of them in the capital, other urban and rural settlements (respectively) report using the Internet on a daily basis. The most vociferous Internet users are by far 18 to 35 year olds with a full 81% of them in the capital, 61% in other urban settlements and 39% in rural settlements reporting using the Internet every day. Only 1% of Georgians have never heard of the Internet, lower than in previous surveys which showed that as much as 6% of Georgians had not heard of the Internet. Notably, 46% of the population reported never using the Internet.
Those who report using the Internet at least once a month – we refer to them as regular Internet users (43% of the adult population) – were asked a number of questions about what they do online. As results show, when online, most are using social networks. In a distant second, regular Internet users report searching for information or news through means other than social media. Less, but roughly equal shares of them reported their most often online activity as either emailing or downloading /listening to/watching movies, music or videos.
Note: Only those who use the Internet at least once a month were asked this question. Each respondent could select up to three answer options.
Roughly nine out of ten regular Internet users in Georgia use either Facebook, Twitter, Odnoklassniki or VKontakte – or some combination of these social networks – at least once per week. This means that approximately four in ten Georgian adults regularly use a social network. As far as specific social networks go, Facebook is by far the most popular in Georgia –79% of regular Internet users are on Facebook at least once a week. The next most popular social networking site is the Russian Odnoklassniki; rather small shares of Georgians use VKontakte and/or Twitter on a regular basis.
The data shows three major patterns of social network choice by regular Internet users in Georgia – Russian networks only, American networks only, and a mix of both. The Russian only users are the smallest share of users (9% of regular Internet users) followed by American only network users (36%). A plurality (43%) of regular Internet users are on a Russian and American social network at least once per week.
The American only users are heavily concentrated in Tbilisi (68%) compared with the mixed and Russian network only users who are more evenly distributed throughout the country. The American only users are also more affluent being both more highly educated and having higher household incomes.
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