More people use Twitter than Facebook in Japan

More people in Japan are using Twitter than Facebook. That’s according to new research from eMarketer, which estimates that 47.3% of Japan’s 25.1 million people are using the social network.

In comparison, Facebook is being used by 40% of the population.

Overall, 36% of mobile phone users are also using social networks on their devices in 2017. That’s still a little behind the APAC average of 41.3%.

Cindy Liu, an analyst at eMarketer adds that the country will likely remain one of the leading markets for Twitter

“The tendency to engage in self-effacing behavior is common in the country, and Twitter allows users to engage in social media without drawing attention to themselves. Privacy and anonymity are important to Japanese internet users.”

The research company says that higher Twitter usage in Japan featuring as an important instant news tool, following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

Indeed, research from Cardiff University recently found that tweets may even be able to help predict certain events which in turn may help police and security forces respond faster. Based on an analysis of civilian tweets during the London riots in 2011, events such as broken windows were quicker to make it onto Twitter than be reported to police. But what’s more important, the riot could have been detected 1.23 hours earlier compared to police receiving first notice.

According to Dr Pete Burnap, Co-Author of the study:

“In this research, we show that online social media are becoming the go-to place to report observations of everyday occurrences – including social disorder and terrestrial criminal activity. We will never replace traditional policing resource on the ground but we have demonstrated that this research could augment existing intelligence gathering and draw on new technologies to support more established policing methods.”