Study: Liberals more likely to block social-media friends over political differences

Alex Myers | Contributor

According to a new poll from the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, self-described liberals are twice as likely than self-described conservatives to block material on social networking websites that they find politically disagreeable.

Thirty-six percent of social media users said they have blocked, “unfriended” or hidden someone because of politics, but left-leaning participants were far more likely to have taken that action to express disagreement about a friend’s political views.

“Liberals are the most likely to have taken … steps to block, unfriend, or hide” disagreeable political messages, Pew concluded. “In all, 28% of liberals have blocked, unfriended, or hidden someone on SNS [social networking sites] because of one of these reasons, compared with 16% of conservatives and 14% of moderates.”

Sixteen percent of liberal users said they blocked someone who posted something specific that they disagreed with, compared to eight percent of conservative users.

Liberals are also far more likely than conservatives — 11 percent compared with 4 percent — to completely delete friends from social networking sites because they disagree with their politics.

There has been no word — nor will there likely be any — about whether liberals will enjoy reading this story. Many, if the Pew study is to be believed, will just block it from their news feeds.

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