MANILA, Philippines -- A recent global study ranks the Philippines among countries with the highest percentage of Internet users using social networks.
Released by New York-based media agency Universal McCann, the study surveyed 17, 000 Internet users in 29 countries.
In the Philippines, the study noted 15 percent Internet penetration and estimates 37 million "active" Internet users(aged between 16 to 54), or those who go online daily or every other day.
The study estimates 83 percent of Internet users in the Philippines have created social network profiles, having the highest percentage ahead of Hungary (80 percent), Poland (77 percent) and Mexico (76 percent).
It is estimated that nearly 90 percent of users in the Philippines have Friendster accounts, although the rest of the world is either logging on to MySpace or Facebook.
Among the social networks mentioned, 32 percent of total Internet users log on to MySpace every week and 22 percent check their Facebook accounts. However, the study noted the popularity of social networks specific to geographical areas, like Cyworld and Mixi in Asia or Orkut in Brazil.
This shows that it is nearly impossible to create a single social network for the entire population of an estimated 232 million Internet users worldwide, the study said.
Meanwhile, the Philippines also ranks high in terms of specific usage of these social networks. The study estimates 90 percent of Filipino users read blogs, second only to South Korea (92 percent).
Moreover, the Philippines also has the highest percentage of users (86 percent) that have uploaded photos in these social networks, ahead of China (73 percent), Mexico (72 percent) and Brazil (70 percent).
The study also estimates 98 percent of Filipino Internet users have watched video on YouTube, again ranked highest ahead of Mexico and Brazil.
On the other hand, the Philippines was ranked a few notches lower when it comes to downloading podcasts or using RSS (real simple syndication) feeds.
On its third year, the Universal McCann aims to track the use of social media among Internet users worldwide. In general, this year's report showed increasing usage of social networks compared to the past two years.
Also, the results showed that higher usage in emerging countries than the US wherein only an estimated 43 percent of total Internet users use social networks.