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Study: Social Networking Site Users Divided by Race
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Written by Daniel   
Thursday, 29 November 2007 11:25
Study shows that students' race weighs on social networking site choice
Wolfgang Hansson (Blog) - November 29, 2007 1:07 AM
DailyTech

Social networking sites are some of the most popular places for people to congregate online. Many think of the Internet as an equalizer where anyone with web access can meet as peers regardless of race or level of education.

Social networking sites aren’t perfect with minors often solicited for sex and convicted sex offenders amongst the user base. These sorts of problems don’t stop people from using sites like Facebook or MySpace. Some states are trying to pass laws requiring social networking and online dating sites to be more specific on if the sites perform background checks on members to provide better security for users of the site.

A recent study points out another possible problem with social networking sites. Rather than putting all Internet users on a level playing field, the study claims that the Internet is simply fostering the same race divisions we see commonly in the real world.

Eszter Hargittai of the Institute for Policy Research at Northwestern University in Illinois performed a study of 1,000 college freshmen from the University of Illinois, Chicago. While 1,000 students from a single university are usually a poor demographic for diversity, UIC was chosen as it is currently pegged the fourth most diverse university in North America (PDF)... More     Comment in the Forums
 
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