The overwhelming majority of Facebook users say they would rather leave the social media platform than have to pay $1 a month to use it, according to a new poll.
In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal that revealed President Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign utilized users’ Facebook data acquired by the tech consulting firm, Facebook has been dabbling with the idea of offering a paid-subscription version that would keep users’ data private.
The poll, conducted in late April by Alpha, a tech startup consulting firm, found that most of the respondents are concerned about their privacy on social media. In a scaled rating of one through five, with “5” being “extremely concerned” and “1” being “not concerned at all,” 26 percent of respondents gave a “5” rating, 28 percent gave a “4” rating, and 31 gave a “3” rating.
Unfortunately for Facebook, it seems now that even if it wanted to employ the paid version, very few would use it. If the paid version was a requirement to use the social media site, most say they would leave it. (RELATED: Facebook Researching Ad-Free Subscription Model)
In the poll of 1,163 respondents, more than 80 percent said they would rather leave Facebook than pay for features such as messaging, joining groups, or register for events. The poll did not state the margin of error or methodology information.
Seventy-nine percent of respondents said they would rather keep the free version of Facebook rather than pay $1 a month for an ad-free experience.
Twitter and Myspace were the top two social media sites that Facebook users left. Users dissatisfaction with the platforms, rather than pursuing competing alternatives, was among some of the reasons they left Twitter specifically, according the Alpha, the firm responsible for the poll.
“[Twitter] just wasn’t [what] I signed up [for] and [I] looked at it maybe one day and then I just kind of forgot about it. I really do not get Twitter,” was one of the “representative responses.”
It is unlikely, however, that most users would leave social media all together. A plurality of respondents, 38 percent, said they’ve “never stopped using a social media platform” after they’ve begun using it, according to the poll.
“There will always be a version of Facebook that is free,” Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg said on April 10 during a congressional testimony.
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