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Innovation and Diffusion: Women Dominate As Early Adopters

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It’s a general perception that men are the early tech adopters and gadget gurus, but more and more women are starting to catch up with their male counterparts by embracing social media, social gaming, texting and overall smartphone use.

Female smartphone users are edging out men in using location-based services like Facebook Places and foursquare. The gap is slim… about 50.8 percent of mobile phone users who use check-in services are women, compared with 49.2 percent of men.

Experts believe that the frequency in which women are starting to embrace technology is not all that surprising, considering social media sites and other platforms are more about building relationships and staying in touch with others.

Not only are women accessing sites such as Facebook more, girls are also text messaging more than boys.  This reflects how today’s new media are becoming increasingly integrated into the rhythm of everyday social life for both males and females.

Erik Qualman, author of the best-selling book “Socialnomics: How social media transforms the way we live and do business” (Wiley Publishing, 2009), believes that more women are flocking to social media sites — and then to other forms of tech — because these platforms circulate around the notion of being social and staying connected with friends and family

Now.. is it any wonder that Facebook is being run in part by Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg?!

Although Facebook was founded and created by Mark Zuckerberg, Sandra Calvert, a professor and director of the Children’s Digital Media Center at Georgetown University, believes female adoption of the site could generate more female computer programmers and tech-minded thinkers in the future.

In line with gender stereotypes, young girls tend to spend more time chatting and doing verbal things, while boys spend more time playing games, from video games to hide and seek.  But thanks to the growth of social-based games, which can be played on sites such as Facebook or entertainment destination sites such as MocoSpace, more women are becoming interested in social gaming.

In fact, MocoSpace — which boasts games such as Street Wars, Happy Farm and Blackjack Party — saw nearly equal traffic from men and women in recent months. Although 53 percent of the site’s social gamers are male, 47 percent are female.

We women are social creatures.  We thrive on the connectivity and effectiveness of our communication skills regarding relationships with our friends, co-workers, children, family and significant others.  Millions of years of evolution has created a knack for first, recognizing and then integrating the use of new tools.

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