SPAIN spends more time connected to social networking sites than any other country in the world.
Forty-seven per cent of the 20.6 million Spaniards with an internet connection spend an average of two hours a day on these sites, found a study by the International University of Valencia (VIU). The average outside Spain was 29 per cent, the researchers said.
They also recognised Spain as the best-connected country – in the internet sense, that is – in Europe, spending an average of 4.4 hours a day on the net. They used mobile phones for 2.7 hours of this period.
What the survey has also established, researchers announced, is that Spain’s internet habit verges on addictive behaviour, especially in the under-26 age group.
Two out of every three Spaniards look at their mobile whenever they have five minutes to spare, they told the researchers. This was reduced to every two minutes amongst the youngest net surfer.
“They are being exposed to an information overload that our society is not ready for,” the VIU study claimed. In some cases these new consumer habits can contribute to impaired judgement, produce low frustration-tolerance and produces confusion over decision-making, it warned.
Spain isn’t alone in internet-addiction, VIU said, as their findings could be applied to every other country in the world.
Over the last 15 years, the number of internet users has increased eight-fold, growing from 400 to 3.2 billion million registered users. This is particularly noticeable in developing countries, according to VIU.