Engagement with Causes on the Web Varies by Gender, Ethnicity

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Not a fan of being asked to support various causes on Facebook? Statistically, that suggests that you’re a white male, according to a new study carried out by Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication and Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide. Two thousand Americans above the age of 18 took part in the survey towards the end of last year, and the results really don’t look good for Caucasian men.

Not only did the study find that American woman are more likely to believe in individual empowerment to make a difference by supporting a cause than men (80% of women believe that supporting causes can create a sense of purpose in life, with 65% of women thinking that social media can increase the visibility of their cause; by comparison, only 17% of men agree), but it also revealed that African Americans and Hispanics are more likely than Caucasians to use social media to learn about social issues and causes (30% and 39% versus 24%, respectively).

One thing that social media apparently doesn’t do is change which causes people gravitate towards – supporting the troops and feeding the hungry remain the most popular causes amongst Americans – although it does change the way that we interact with those causes.

Results from the study are still being released, with Georgetown University promising breakdowns by generation on June 13th. Old white men? I don’t think that you’re going to be well-represented in that one.