Mar 4, 2014 12:57 pm

More than half of Millennials have shared a ‘selfie’

Ellen DeGeneres selfie OscarsActress Ellen DeGeneres set out to create the most viral selfie ever on Oscar night and succeeded not just in capturing a celebrity moment but a digital one, too.

Taking a “selfie” was relatively difficult to pull off before digital phones and cameras made them easy. Not surprisingly, the generation that has taken to them more than any other are the Millennials (ages 18 to 33), who have grown up with the new digital technologies of the 21st century. They’re the heaviest users of the internet, cell phones and social media sites. And a new Pew Research Center survey finds that 55% of Millennials have posted a “selfie” on a social media site; no other generation is nearly as inclined to do this. Overall, 26% of Americans have shared a “selfie” on a photo-sharing or social networking site. How many Millennials have taken selfie?

Indeed, our new survey — taken a few weeks before Oscar night — found only about six-in-ten Baby Boomers and about a third of the Silent Generation say they know what a “selfie” is—though the term had acquired enough cachet to be declared the Oxford Dictionaries “word of the year” in 2013.

However, there’s some self-awareness of the downside to the “selfie” culture. Nine-in-ten Millennials say people generally share too much information about themselves online, a view held by similarly lopsided proportions of all older generations.

Here are more detailed results and survey methodology.

Topics: Digital Media, Millennials, Mobile

Mar 4, 2014 11:30 am

Data Feed: Public support for minimum wage hike, suicidal tendencies, tech gender gap

A daily roundup of fresh data from scholars, governments, think tanks, pollsters and other social science researchers.

Dem. advantage on key issues doesn’t translate to midterm edge, topline, ABC News/Washington Post
Is the Democrats’ push on minimum wage working? Washington Post
Most voters in N.J., N.Y., Va. favor min. wage hiketopline, Roanoke/Rutgers/Siena
Conn. voters support state minimum wage hike 71%-25%, Quinnipiac
Virginians split on Obama’s job approval; 80% disapprove job Congress is doing, CNU
51% of N.C. voters oppose gay marriage, 40% support it, topline, Elon
Are the Democrats getting too liberal? Washington Post via Pew Research

White House spending projections vs. actual spending, The Washington Post
There is no gender gap in tech salaries, Quartz
February cold stalls auto-sales growth, Bloomberg

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Category: Data Feed

Mar 3, 2014 11:13 am

Data Feed: Ukrainian views of democracy, 2014 billionaires, Senate landscape

A daily roundup of fresh data from scholars, governments, think tanks, pollsters and other social science researchers.

The 2014 Senate landscape, New York Times
Pa. voters support same-sex marriage, split on recreational marijuana, Quinnipiac
N.J. voters split on job Obama is doing; plurality approve of both Senators, Monmouth
Interactive: Industry voices dominate the trade advisory system, The Washington Post

The 2014 billionaires list, Forbes
Weather freezes consumer confidence in place in February, Reuters/U. Mich.
U.S. consumer spending rebounds in February, Gallup

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Category: Data Feed

Mar 3, 2014 7:00 am

As Obama meets with Netanyahu, Americans are divided on U.S. role in Israeli-Palestinian dispute

President Obama is scheduled to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today, and he intends to press him to help move Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations to a “conclusive round,” according to the New York Times. But after years of efforts to broker a resolution to the conflict, Americans are divided over how much they want the U.S. to be involved.

Until now, Obama has not been as personally involved as some presidents had been in peacekeeping efforts, although Secretary of State John Kerry has made the goal of a comprehensive peace agreement one of his top priorities.

Americans don't want more Israel involvement. But about four-in-ten (39%) of Americans say the U.S. should be less involved in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian dispute compared with 36% who say it should remain is involved as it is now, according to a survey conducted last fall. About a fifth (21%) of Americans say the U.S. should be more involved.

Opinions on levels of U.S. involvement do not vary widely across party lines, although Tea Party Republicans are more likely, (by a 38% to 21% margin) than non-Tea Party Republicans to say the U.S. should be more involved.

As far as how those in Israel feel, a poll last spring found that while Palestinians and Israelis had starkly different views of the U.S. and Obama, both sides favored the idea of Obama playing a greater role in resolving their dispute. About half (49%) of Israelis expressed that view as did 41% of Palestinians, while smaller numbers on each side said Obama’s involvement should remain about the same or be smaller.   Read More

Topics: Barack Obama, Middle East and North Africa

Feb 28, 2014 11:03 am

Data Feed: Millennials’ college payoff, Marcellus Shale job boom, global food waste

A daily roundup of fresh data from scholars, governments, think tanks, pollsters and other social science researchers.

For Millennials, higher education really pays off, Pew Research Center’s Fact Tank
Real GDP increased at an annual rate of 2.4% in Q4 2013 in new estimate, BEA
Federal budget deficit falls to smallest level since 2008, New York Times
Realty check: Interactive guide to America’s housing market, The Economist
Jobless rates down in 43 states in 2013, Bureau of Labor Statistics
Effects of Marcellus Shale gas boom on employment, wages in Pa., BLS
The stock-picking skills of SEC employees, U. Va. via WaPost
Attracting customers and new business still top challenge in the U.S., Gallup
U.S.-NAFTA trade via pipeline up 6.4% from previous year, Bureau of Transportation Statistics

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Category: Data Feed

Feb 28, 2014 9:00 am

Chart of the Week: The decline of Yiddish, the rise of Tagalog

Chart of languages spoken in the U.S. over time

The United States has been a polyglot country since before it was a country. As early as 1646, no fewer than 18 languages were spoken on Manhattan Island. German was common in colonial-era Pennsylvania. New York’s Dutch community held onto their language long after the English takeover of what had been New Amsterdam. And African slaves spoke dozens of native languages and dialects. But the nation’s continuing linguistic diversity is ever evolving and it can still spark controversy, as Coca-Cola discovered with its recent Super Bowl ad.

Language charts, such as this one by the U.S. Census, reflect the nation’s changing demographics. Spanish is overwhelmingly the most common non-English language, as it has been since the Census Bureau began detailed language surveys in the 1970s. According to the 2011 American Community Survey, nearly 13% of the population (37.6 million people) spoke Spanish or a Spanish creole at home. Beyond that, though, the chart illustrates the changing composition of the U.S. population.

In 1980, for instance, only about 630,000 people spoke Chinese at home; by 2001 nearly 2.9 million did. The number of Tagalog speakers more than tripled over that span, to about 1.6 million. By contrast, languages spoken by older immigrant groups continue to decline. In 2011, for example, only about 161,000 people reported speaking Yiddish at home, about half as many as in 1980. Note that because the chart only displays languages for which comparable data were available for all time periods, other widely spoken languages such as Arabic (952,000 speakers in 2011), Hindi (645,000) and Urdu (374,000) aren’t shown.

As one might expect, language prevalence varies considerably by geography. Chicago, for instance, retains a concentration of Polish speakers, while Arabic is the predominant language (other than English and Spanish) in the Detroit area.

Category: Chart of the Week

Topics: Language, U.S. Census

Feb 28, 2014 7:00 am

For Millennials, a bachelor’s degree continues to pay off, but a master’s earns even more

Monthly earnings of Millennials, college graduates with bachelor's, master's, doctorate degreesMillennials are the nation’s most educated generation in history in terms of finishing college.  But despite the stereotype that today’s recent college graduates are largely underemployed, the data show that this generation of college grads earns more than ones that came before it.

In 2009 (the latest year available) the median monthly earnings of young adults with a bachelor’s degree and no further education was $3,836, a 13% increase from 1984 ($3,399), according to the Census Bureau’s Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP).

The economic payoffs for obtaining a bachelor’s degree vary widely by major field of study.  It is certainly possible that earnings have declined since the early 1980s for specific major fields of study.  But given what young adults choose to study, the typical or median young adult with a bachelor’s degree earns more than they used to. Read More

Topics: College, Economics and Personal Finances, Educational Attainment

Feb 27, 2014 1:59 pm

Indians’ support for Modi, BJP shows an itch for change

When Indians go to the polls a few weeks from now they will decide who will lead the world’s second most populous nation and 10th largest economy. The new government will face challenges reviving economic growth, curbing inflation, narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor and protecting Indians from domestic terrorism. Success or failure may determine whether more and more Indians emerge from poverty and whether India plays an ever greater role on the world stage.

Indian public would prefer the Bharatiya Janata Party rather than the ruling Indian National Congress party to lead the next Indian government. According to a new Pew Research Center survey conducted between December 2013 and January 2014, the Indian public, by a margin of more than three-to-one, would prefer the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) rather than the ruling Indian National Congress party to lead the next Indian government. Read More

Topics: Asia and the Pacific

Feb 27, 2014 11:28 am

Data Feed: Tax reform in charts, the Web at 25, GOP voters say no to marijuana

A daily roundup of fresh data from scholars, governments, think tanks, pollsters and other social science researchers.

GOP, though deeply split, has election edge, with breakdowns, New York Times
Public split over increased deportation of unauthorized immigrants, Pew Research Center
The House GOP tax-reform proposal in four simple charts, The Washington Post
22% of likely GOP voters said smoking marijuana was acceptable, Winthrop
How Republicans lost non-religious voters, The Washington Post
In Pa., Clinton climbs as Christie crashes, Quinnipiac

Interactive: How have housing prices changed in your city?  Report, Demand Institute
Americans remain divided on military spending, Gallup
What wealth looks like by age group, The Washington Post

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Category: Data Feed

Feb 27, 2014 11:02 am

Strong support for Israel in U.S. cuts across religious lines

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), which holds its annual policy conference in Washington, D.C., beginning Sunday, is sometimes referred to as the “Jewish lobby.” But its mission is as an Israel lobby, and when it comes to public backing for that country in the U.S., evangelical Christians are even more supportive of Israel than American Jews by some measures.

U.S. support for Israel by religionAIPAC itself has taken note of that fact, making clear that its work is not limited to Jews. Its website refers to activists across all religions and says that “the evangelical Christian community plays an increasingly vital role.

Pew Research surveys find that similar shares of Christians (29%) and Jews (31%) say the U.S. is not supportive enough of Israel. Among white evangelical Protestants, nearly half (46%) say that the U.S. is not providing enough support for Israel.

Read More

Topics: Evangelical Protestants and Evangelicalism, Foreign Affairs and Policy, Middle East and North Africa, Religion and Politics