The most-watched television broadcast in U.S. history is Super Bowl XLIX. On February 1, 2015, about 114.4 million people watched the Patriots defeat the Seahawks, and even more—about 118 million—tuned in for Katy Perry’s halftime show.
Even in a culturally divided nation, about 36 percent of all Americans could unite around simultaneously seeing Left Shark become Left Shark.
It is an impressive number, a testament to the continuing scale of mass media. Compared to Facebook’s audience, however, it is an absolute pittance.
A new Pew report finds that 52 percent of the adult population use Facebook every day. Simply in terms of audience size, Facebook is like one and a half Super Bowls happening every day of the week.
Its reach extends even further when you also count occasional Facebook users. Fully 68 percent of American adults use the site at all*.
No other social network comes close to Facebook’s power. In fact, the second most popular social-media app in the country is also owned by Facebook: Instagram is used by 32 percent of online American adults. Only the third and fourth most-popular social networks, Pinterest and LinkedIn, sit beyond the company’s grasp. About three in ten online American adults use each of those.