InSites Consulting surveyed the global online population on how they relate to social networking sites. "Social Media Around the World" was released late in March with findings regarding the ninety percent of respondents who had h

eard of at least one social networking site.

Globally, 83 percent of the online population know Facebook, with over ninety percent of North Americans. After Facebook, North Americans are most familiar with MySpace and Twitter. This corresponds to the top three penetration for membership, also.

72 percent of the internet population are active on at least one social network - 84 percent in the US. Of the 28 percent of global respondents that do not belong to a social network, 31 percent plan to sign up.

Of the 69 percent that are non-intentioned, non-users of social networks, the largest barrier is not wanting to share personal info - in North America this level reaches over eighty percent, as does the response "Any message can start leading a life online." Over half of North American non-users see no advantage in having membership, and around forty percent do not want to free  any time for it.

Those numbers are for non-members, but patterns are different for former social network site users. Of the online population, twelve percent are ex-MySpace members. Of the same population, seven percent are currently former members of Facebook and Hi5 (more popular in Romania and Portugal).

Despite these ex-members of Facebook, the most popular social networking site has more than half of the global Internet population as members. Nearly three-quarters of the online US is on the site.

Of social network members, 84 percent are members in a non-professional role. Three percent become members of a professional site without having a personal profile - these professional only memberships (on networks like LinkedIn or Xing) are more predominantly older or male individuals. Thirteen percent have both types of accounts.