In August, Facebook was used by 67% of people on a daily basis in Ireland, but this was down from 72% in May, according to the results of the Ipsos MRBI’s Social Networking Quarterly survey. Despite this, Facebook is the most popular social network on the old sod with 59% of Irish people having an account, says a report from RTE.
Twitter is the second most popular social platform in Ireland, with 28% having an account, and 39% using the site on a daily basis. The other social networks, too, have a significant presence in the Irish market, but none of them showed any major growth in the last year.
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Almost 23% of Irish people have a LinkedIn account, while 21% have a Google+ account, a decline of around 3% since last August. The photo-sharing site Instagram is used by 19% of the Irish. The maximum growth was noted in the usage of the visual discovery tool Pinterest. The site was used by 11% of Irish people last year, and now its up to 14%, says the report.
Facebook in trouble in Europe?
Though Facebook is popular in the region, it may struggle as the first indication from the highest court of Europe will come this week regarding how it will rule in a landmark case determining how the data of EU citizens held by U.S. firms is protected. The European Court of Justice is expected to clear the way for the Data Protection Commissioner to investigate the issue in depth, and Ireland will play a central role in any eventual treatment.
Maximilian Schrems, an Austrian law student, has filed a case against the data protection commissioner, and an advocate general of the court will deliver an opinion on Thursday. Schrems, who has been using Facebook since 2008, has mounted an international campaign against Facebook’s data protection protocols. Schrems is the founder of the advocacy group Europe V Facebook.
When European users join the social network, they enter into an agreement with Facebook Ireland. Either all or a part of their personal data is transferred to the U.S. servers. Schrems alleged that U.S. law and practice did not provide any meaningful protection of such data against state surveillance. Schrems claims are based on revelations by U.S. whistle-blower Edward Snowden in May 2013.