Facebook users and their interest in ham radio

If you are reading this article, it means you are using the Internet, and if so, you see no problem with getting in touch with someone, say, from Japan or any other country on Earth for that matter.  You barely have to do anything at all in order to share a fresh piece of news with some of your relatives living in any part of the world. But things haven’t always been like that.

Back in the old days, the only means of communicating at a global scale was radio, and it wasn’t like you pushed the “send” button and waited for the response. Communicating by radio required a whole battery of special equipment which you had to invest quite a bit of money into and you had to have special knowledge in all radio stuff.

We don’t want to cover the history of ham radio (or amateur radio) since there are tons of resources online which cover the subject in detail. So, if you find yourself confused with the term “ham radio”, we advise you to take a look at the following resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amateur_radio

http://www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio

http://www.howstuffworks.com/ham-radio.htm

http://www.eham.net/newham/whatis

http://www.hamuniverse.com/hamradio.html

There is no doubt that the Internet made things a whole lot simpler for us in terms of information and communication and there is a good chance that by now you know what the term “social network” means, and if you do, the first social network that probably comes to your mind is Facebook.

But Facebook is not only about letting people stay in touch with each other no matter which part of the world they currently reside at – it’s also a money-making machine and business which allows its owners and investors to earn their living.

So how does the business work? Like millions of other internet projects, it is based on advertisement. What makes advertisement on Facebook efficient and justified is an ability to choose a target audience for your advertising campaign. The options that are available for you are choosing people who reside in a certain country or even city, selecting their age, gender, specific interests, level of education etc.

What does it have to do with ham radio? The trick is you may use the Facebook target audience tool for gathering statistical data based on the above criteria.  And what we are going to do now is to do a little research on how many Facebook users which reside in the United States are interested in ham radio.

Let’s take a look at the infographic below.

Interest in ham radio by states

Interest in ham radio by states

The first graph shows the popularity of ham radio among Facebook users by states. We tried to avoid absolute figures in favor of relative ones in order to come up with realistic image– it applies to all graphs.

So what are those figures all about? Those are respective values which say what percentage of Facebook users from a certain state in the US specified “ham radio” or “amateur radio” as their interest.  Of course, the only way to know which state Facebook user lives in is to trust the data specified in the profile itself. There is a good chance that some of the users didn’t specify their location at all or posted false information. Moreover, not everybody in the US, as well as the rest of the world, has a Facebook account.  These are the reasons why we favored relative figures. Besides, the population itself varies from state to state.

A quick glance at the chart is enough to notice that West Virginia is far ahead of the other states as far as ham radio goes. If you are a hardcore ham, you might think of a reason – we are sure you will do a better job than we did. Nevada lags behind the rest of the states. Why? It’s a subject for another research.  Anyways, you are welcome to send us your suggestions, so we could include them into the article.

 

Interest in ham radio by gender

Interest in ham radio by gender

Let’s take a look at the graph which shows the interest in amateur radio by gender. Comes as no surprise, does it? A little more than 0.1 percent of male Facebook users in the Unites States have an idea of what “ham radio” is.  As to the females, it’s just three hundreds of one percent. Some things never change – males have always been into such geeky things like radio, electronics and engineering for better or for worse. Beware that there is quite a chunk of Facebook users who do not disclose their gender. We only want to believe that the percentage of male and female users who do not disclose their gender is about the same.

Interest in ham radio by age groups

Now the most interesting part.  The next chart shows that the share of people of different age groups interested in ham radio grows up with age. An explanation that seems valid to us is that older people, especially those who are more than forty years old, were born at those times when, as previously has been mentioned, radio was the only means of communication over large distances and it was at that time that it became possible for a large number of people to set up equipment required for communicating in such way.  Now the younger generations take the technology for granted and very few of young people would bother themselves with learning all the nuts and bolts of radio communication let alone setting up a radio station of their own. So it comes as no surprise that 0.31 percent of male Facebook users aged from 57 to 61 years at least have an idea of what ham radio is, as opposed to the younger “ham-radio aware” male users aged from 23 to 27 years who constitute only six hundredth of a percent of the entire male contingent of the same age.

Interest in ham radio by relationship status

The last table tries to explore interest in ham radio by relationship status. To tell you the truth, we expected to see a slightly higher figures pertaining to the “single” group of Facebook users.  Maybe it’s the misconception that people who are well educated in electronics and suchlike things are for the most part geeks and nerds who frown upon all this family business and choose the way of knowledge. But, as we said, it’s just a prejudice we can’t quite get rid of. Shame on us.

Well, that would be it. It’s unlikely that you found the information that could drastically change your life, but the point was to show you another side of social networks and what they are capable of apart from sending a message to your honey inquiring about her health.

Over and out!

 

 

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