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Statistics Suggest Twitter is More Popular than Facebook in Japan

Japan is the land of technology for sure. A lot of the objects we know and love started there and even today it's the place to go for the latest gadgets. Social media is definitely a big thing over there and with that and their fancy phones, you'd think Facebook would be incredibly popular, but the most recent statistics suggest something different. They suggest that Twitter, the service that many people claim to be dying, has got an increasingly larger user base over there. At the end of 2015, Twitter had 35 million users in Japan to Facebook’s 25 million and as you can see, it’s a pretty big difference.

As someone who keeps a close eye on what goes on in Japan, I'm hardly surprised. Facebook can be great for keeping in contact with people but with each new update it seems like they want to go big, or go home to the point where it’s not just a service where you can message people, post photos and play games any more. Services like Twitter have always meant to be small, they might improve and add more features but it's still the simple platform they promised when they started. Twitter is also the better social media service for fan communities and for interacting with celebrities. Not to mention that on Twitter you can have a sense of anonymity, you don't have to use your real name or post pictures of yourself like you’re pushed to on Facebook. You can have a fun user name and your icon can be anything you like and though technically you can have anything you like image wise on Facebook, people are more likely to recognise you from your picture. This is one of the reasons that Twitter is still going everywhere in the world though because not everyone wants their opinions connected to their name or face. An example of something like this might be the Japanese assault against ISIS on Twitter where they would flood the accounts with a cute illustration of a girl called Isis-chan who loved melon juice and hates violence. It seems kind of random and you might not want anyone knowing you were posting something related to the hate group but it's a different way of trying to get rid of hate and something like that probably wouldn't do well on Facebook

Another thing to remember is that Japanese people are less likely to use the Messenger app because there’s another big messaging app used in Japan and some of the other East Asian countries. Line has a simple messenger feature plus free audio and video calls just like the Messenger app uses. What you might not know is that it also has a timeline feature like Facebook and you can add various companies to get free coupons. The app not only has a cuter selection of stickers compared to some of the Facebook ones but it also has games that you can download but have to be connected to Line including a Disney Tsum Tsum puzzle game. And if you can't tell, I've been tempted to install Line before but when you have no one to speak to, there's no point. Facebook Messenger might be more functional in other aspects but not everyone is going to trust a service like Facebook to buy things or order an Uber. And game wise? You can only access Facebook games on the desktop and the only game we’ve found on Messenger so far is the secret chess game. It’s not exactly the same. Everything about Line makes it a better replacement for Facebook, especially when you consider the fact it's tailored for Asian users even if it is available across the world too.

Not all Facebook services did so badly in Japan though. It doesn’t look as if Instagram gained more users then Twitter but more and more users from Japan did join the site in 2015. Fashion and photography are both popular in Japan which makes Instagram a perfect service for their wants and needs. Plus users can interact with their favourite celebrities. Instagram is very different to Facebook though and like Twitter it’s mostly kept to its simplistic routes.

So what is this saying about Facebook considering they own Instagram? It seems to be suggesting that the Japanese prefer their social media to be kept simple. This might seem kind of funny considering how weird and wonderful the country can be but when you’re sharing something with your friends, you don’t want anything too complicated. Facebook is probably used mostly to keep in contacts with friends and family where Twitter users may be a little more involved. You can’t even rely on Facebook trends to keep up the news as they tend to be so far behind so using Twitter is probably the best way to keep up with the world in an incredibly fast paced country especially during events like a natural disaster. Either way this is good news for Twitter because it seems unlikely that Facebook would get rid of all these updates just for the sake of ten million users so they may be on the up.

Rosina is a Songbird rookie with a degree in Creative Writing. She's trying to focus on her novel on the side but is hoping that Content Writing will turn out to be a good career choice in the mean time! Follow her @RosinaAtSMF

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Statistics Suggest Twitter is More Popular than Facebook in Japan Reviewed by Unknown on Tuesday, February 23, 2016 Rating: 5

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