Over the last week or so there's been a lot of news coverage regarding Google's new social networking venture, Google+. One topic in particular seems to be cropping up time and time again: the fact that the vast majority of G+ users are men. Some reports put the percentage of male users as high as 86 percent. However, it seems these numbers are not quite right. Entrepreneur Paul Allen moved to dispel the rumors last Friday with some research of his own and a few words about current stats.
"A lot of misinformation about Google+'s male to female ratio is going around Google+ and even being reported on by respectable media sites," Allen wrote, before declaring, "All of these articles are based on totally flawed data."
Allen goes on to explain that Socialstatistics.com, the source behind the claim that 86.8 percent of Google+ users are male, is an opt-in, third party service that places users on a leader board. Because men are more competitive when it comes to leader board recognition, they are more likely to sign up for such a service. Allen says another site being sourced, findpeopleonplus.com, is also not accurate.
"They report that of the first 948,000 profiles they crawled, 74.9 percent are male and 25.1 percent are female," Allen wrote on his own G+ profile. "But crawling is time consuming and the crawlers were finding the mostly male user profiles from the initial field test seeding. This is not a random sampling."
Mr. Allen's own surname-based random sampling showed the following results:
7/4 77 percent Male, 23 percent Female
7/7 68.4 percent Male, 31.6 percent Female (after the user base had almost doubled)
7/14 66.4 percent Male, 33.6 percent Female
Based on the rate at which G+ is turning pink, Allen predicts that Google+'s female population percentage will likely surpass LinkedIn's (37 percent female) in early August.
"The poster of 18 men in a hot tub that has been passed around for the past week or two is not reflective of reality and is not what Google+ is going to end up being."
Are you on Google+? Do you find that more of your male friends are signing up to the service than female? Let us know your own experiences in the comments below!