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Social Media and Online Services in Israel: Data on Usage and Sentiments (2022)

Israel Internet Association (ISOC-IL) publishes data on the scope of usage and views of the Israeli public regarding various online services, with the option of examining usage patterns in focused cross-sections according to a variety of demographics.

The data is based on a survey conducted for the Israel Internet Association in early 2022 by the Dialogue Research Institute among 1,000 respondents, comprising a representative sample of the population in Israel above the age of 18.

Scope of Private and Business Usage of Online Platforms

Analysis according to age groups and level of education

  • The higher the level of education the lower the use of TikTok (approximately) compared with an opposite trend for LinkedIn. TikTok is more common among high-school graduates with/without a matriculation certificate (24%–25% use it compared with 14% among those with non-academic higher education and 11%–12% of individuals with an academic education). In contrast, LinkedIn is relatively more popular among people with an academic education (27% of users have a master’s degree or above, 19% have a bachelor’s degree and 3%–8% have various lower levels of education).
  • Instagram is most prominent among people who only have a matriculation certificate (62% usage compared with 41%–54% in the other high-school education level groups).
  • People who are not employed stood out relatively in terms of their lack of use of social networks (19% compared with 3%–10% among others). Students and soldiers in regular service were prominent Instagram users (74% and 90% respectively) while pensioners tended to be relatively less popular users (25% compared with 40%–52% in parallel groups). These two groups were also clearly seen to share a similar level of use of Telegram (45% of the students and 8% of the pensioners).
  • Almost all soldiers in regular service use WhatsApp (98%), while the extent to which they used TikTok also stood out (45% compared with 7%–26% in other groups). Students and soldiers in regular service tend to use Discord (relatively) more (7% and 13% respectively compared with 0%–2% in other groups).
  • Instagram usage experiences a monotonic decrease as the age group gets older (from 82% among 18–22-year-olds to 29% among the 60+), yet this contrasts with the use of WhatsApp which remains similar among the age groups (83%–88%).
  • Facebook usage reveals a different trend: the use of Facebook is common among 30–49-year-olds (84%–86%) with a decline in usage on both sides of this age group, with 60% usage among 18–22-year-olds and 73% among the 60+. TikTok is especially popular among 18–22-year-olds (37% compared with 8%–14% in the older age groups), as is the case with the use of Discord (13% compared with 0%–3% among the older age groups). In addition, 18–29-year-olds tend to use Pinterest more (15%–20% compared with 6%–8% among the older age groups).

Analysis according to social groups & sectors

  • Ultra-Orthodox Jews stood out for their lack of use of social networks (27% of them compared with 2% of secular Jews and up to 11% among Arabs). Secular and traditional Jews were prominent users of Facebook (85% of them compared with 30% among the ultra-Orthodox and up to 76% among the Arabs) and WhatsApp (89%–93% of them, compared with 67% among the ultra-Orthodox and up to 82% among religious Jews). The use of TikTok is more prevalent among traditional Jews and Arabs (20% and 24% respectively compared with 13% among secular Jews and up to 3% among the ultra-Orthodox). LinkedIn is slightly more popular among secular Jews (19% compared with 8%–12% among others).

Analysis according to field of occupation

  • People working in academic positions, in industry and high-tech tend to prefer Telegram and LinkedIn (38–43%, 19–35% respectively, compared with 17%–32% and 4%–9% respectively in other fields). People working in academic positions tend to use Twitter (relatively) more (28% compared with 5%–18% among others).
  • Lawyers tend to prefer Instagram more than others (73% of them use it compared with 65% among others).

Analysis according to gender

  • In terms of gender, Telegram, Twitter and LinkedIn are more popular with men than women (38% compared with 18%, 15% compared with 7% and 19% compared with 8% respectively). This contrasts with Instagram and Pinterest that are relatively more popular with women (55% compared with 48% and 15% compared with 5% respectively).
  • No gender-related differences were found regarding the use of Facebook, WhatsApp, TikTok and Signal. Notwithstanding, in terms of business usage, WhatsApp is slightly more popular among men (30% compared with 23% among women).

Public views regarding the impact of Facebook and the need for intervention by the State

  • A majority of the public (53%) believes that the State should intervene in the activity of Facebook, compared with 28% who believe that the State should not intervene.
    • The desire for intervention by the State was also high among those respondents who stated that Facebook positively contributes to their life: 51% of them claimed that the State should intervene in Facebook activity in Israel compared with 37% who claimed that it should refrain from intervening; and also, among those who do not know how Facebook influences their lives: 46% believe that the State should intervene while 23% believe that it should not.
  • Men tend to feel that Facebook’s activity has a negative influence on their lives more than women:
    • 34% of men believe that this is the case compared with 20% of women. In contrast to this, 37% of women believe that Facebook’s activity has a positive influence on their life, compared with 31% of men who believe that to be so.
  • In a number of professional fields, the respondents attributed to Facebook a more negative influence on their lives: computers, high-tech and digital (39% of them were of this opinion), general services (39%) as well as science, academic and research (33%), compared with 18%–24% in other professions.
  • People in the 23–39 age group also viewed Facebook’s influence on their lives in a more negative light than the members of the other age groups (32%–33% of them were of this opinion compared with 20%–26% among the other age groups).
  • The Arab participants in the survey stood out as regarding Facebook as something positive (45% of them compared with only 8% among ultra-Orthodox Jewish society and 31%–36% of the rest of Jewish society).
  • The ultra-Orthodox were most prominent in their lack of knowledge of how Facebook affects their lives, as 65% of them were unsure compared with 31%–42% of the other sectors not knowing. No substantial differences were found among the sectors in relation to the feeling that Facebook has a negative effect on peoples’ lives.
  • Traditional Jews and religious Jews believed that the State should intervene in Facebook’s activity (61% and 56% of them respectively, compared with 50%–51% among secular or ultra-Orthodox Jews, and 43% among the Arab population). Secular Jews and Arabs voiced greater opposition to this than any other group (31%–33% of them compared with 23%–25% in the other sectors).
  • High-school graduates without a matriculation certificate believe slightly more than others that the State should take action in relation to Facebook (58% of them share this opinion compared with 51%–53% among those with a higher level of education).
  • 35% of the Arab population with a bachelor’s degree supported intervention by the State in Facebook activity, compared with 70% of Arab high-school graduates without a matriculation certificate. This is the case, while within the Jewish population (on average) no difference was noted in the support for intervention by the State among these education levels (56% of Jews with a bachelor’s degree and 54% of Jewish high-school graduates without a matriculation certificate).
  • 50% of the women in the 40–49 age group regard Facebook’s activity as having a positive effect on their lives compared with 31% of women aged 18–22 who were of this opinion. This contrasts with men regarding whom the ratio was inverse: only 27% of 40–49-year-old men regard Facebook’s influence as something positive while 42% of 18–22-year-old men believe this to be true.

Is the use of Instagram and social networks (in terms of the sharing or exposure of photos and video clips) likely to cause body image issues among children and youth?

  • Several groups within the population are less concerned about these problems (though there is still a majority within each group in support of this claim):
    • Non-employed persons and students (18+) (76% and 80% are concerned about this issue compared with 85%–92% among the other professional categories).
    • The Arab population is less concerned by this issue (76% compared with 88%–92% of Jewish society).
    • People in the legal profession were less supportive of this than others and were more unsure about it: 68% of them supported this and 23% were unable to say, compared with a level of 82%–91% support and 4%–14% lack of knowledge among the other professions.
  • All the ultra-Orthodox Jews (100%) in the 23–29 age group believed that the social networks and Instagram are likely to cause body image issues among children and youth, compared with 55% of the 23–29-year-old Arab population. No major difference was seen between ultra-Orthodox Jews and Arabs in other age groups (on average) in relation to this (83% among the ultra-Orthodox Jewish population and 81% among the Arab population).
  • 100% of the full-time employed workers in the world of academic study, digital and science we surveyed, believed that the social networks and Instagram might create body image issues among children and youth, compared with 82% among full-time employed workers in the public health services or social workers.
    • Compared with this, those persons not employed in full-time jobs in these professional fields displayed an inverse ratio in regard to this issue: 95% of those working in public health services or social workers believed that problematic body image issues might arise compared with 79% among academics.