It looks like we’re not the only ones unplugging from Facebook. According to new data published on Tuesday by the Pew Research Center, 61% of current Facebook users have taken a break from the infamously addictive social network. The telephone survey culled its data from a sample of 1,006 adults in the U.S in December 2012.

Some more interesting tidbits about these Facebook comings and goings:

  • 67% of online Americans are Facebook users
  • 8% of online adults who do not currently use Facebook are interested in becoming Facebook users in the future.
  • 20% of the online adults who don’t currently use Facebook say that they used to use the site.
  • 8% of the 61% of users admitted to taking a break from Facebook due to to concerns that they were spending too much time on the site.
  • 21% of those users said that their break from Facebook was the result of being busy and not having time to spend on the site.
  • 28% of Facebook users say the site has become less important to them than it was a year ago. 
  • Only 3% of Facebook users say they plan to spend more time on Facebook in the coming year.
  • 27% of Facebook users say they plan to spend less time on the social network in the next year. (Good luck with that!)
  • Some 38% of Facebook users ages 18-29 expect to spend less time using the site in 2013.
  • 92% of people who use social networking sites maintain a Facebook profile.

Pew also includes a funny little selection of comments in which people explain their Facebook breaks. Justifications include everything from “Too much drama” to “I gave it up for Lent.” Fair enough. 

The big finding here is that almost two-thirds of Facebook users have taken a break from the site. Facebook owns an insane amount of engagement, especially on mobile devices. But the majority of its users have been compelled to step back, voluntarily taking a break from the social network for a period of at least several weeks. Is the social network suffering from dangerous levels of user fatigue

But of course, while only 3% of users plan to spend more time on Facebook in 2013 than in 2012, the majority of Facebook users will likely maintain or increase the time they spend on the site as the company figures out new ways to become even stickier with its huge user base.

Have you considered taking a Facebook break? Have you pulled it off?

We’re in the process. One day at a time, right?

Image by ReadWrite