Telstra Survey: Men Are Biggest Fakers

  • People download smartphone apps to be cool
  • Men lie about checking into Facebook Places more than women
  • NSW residents fake checking in more than other states

Almost half of 18 to 30 year olds admit to using the Facebook Places “check-in” feature to appear more stylish, according to new Telstra research on the mobile habits of Generation Y.  Facebook Places is a new application from Facebook that allows users to “check-in” to places they are visiting from their mobile to share where they are and what they are doing.

A third of Gen Ys also admit to downloading iPhone apps or claiming Facebook or Twitter posts not their own for the primary purpose of appearing cool.

Telstra Consumer Executive Director, Rebekah O’Flaherty says tech-savvy Gen Ys are using social networking sites on their mobile phone, through services like Tribe, to help shape their real-life identity. 

“Australia’s love affair with social networking continues to strengthen with one in four of our customers regularly using their mobiles to access Facebook,” O’Flaherty  said. “Gen Y is leading the charge and armed with their mobile phones using new technologies and applications to make their mark on the world.”

The Telstra research found:

  • Men are bigger phone fakers: One in five Gen Y males admit they have checked in on Facebook Places at a location when they weren’t actually there, as opposed to 12 per cent of Gen Y females.
  • Facebook Places app boosts social cred: 44 per cent of Gen Ys use the Facebook Places “check-in” feature for appearance – to look cool (22 per cent), to fit in with all the cool people who are doing it (12 per cent) or to make others jealous (10 per cent).
  • Check-in is used selectively: Half of Gen Ys only use Facebook Places to check-in at popular or trendy locations – so more mundane locations like work or the supermarket don’t make the cut!
  • Downloading the latest iPhone apps: 27 per cent of Gen Ys admit they have apps on their phone they don’t use just to look fashionable or because other people will find them funny.
  • Tweeting can make you cool: More than a quarter of 18-30 year olds have copied or ‘re-tweeted’ a Twitter update from others without crediting the original poster, and more than half said it was purely to make themselves look good.
  • Gen Y heart phone faking: One in 10 Gen Ys admit to regularly faking where they check-in on Facebook Places, in the pursuit of improving their social status.
  • Facebook is top of the popularity stakes on mobiles: 97 per cent of Telstra customers who use Tribe on their mobile phones access Facebook – well ahead of Twitter and MySpace. Tribe was launched last year and combines Facebook, Twitter and MySpace in a single location free of data charges for Telstra mobile customers.
  • NSW and VIC lead the states in phone faking: NSW residents are most likely to have checked-in using Facebook Places at a location they are not at (17 per cent), followed closely by Victoria (16 per cent). Victorians also scored highest when it comes to ‘selective check-in’, with 56 per cent claiming they use Facebook Places to check-in at a trendy/popular venue as opposed to somewhere un-cool.

Gen Y poster child and social networking addict, Josh Earl, says he can relate to Telstra’s research findings of using new social networking tools to be a ‘phone faker’.

“There are tricks to appearing cooler on a mobile than you really are. My biggest crime would be checking into a gig when I am actually buying chips from the shop next door,” Josh said.

Telstra’s research also revealed:

  • One in three Gen Ys rate Facebook Places as their favourite Facebook application.
  • One-third of Gen Ys admit they feel jealous or left out when they see their friends check-in on Facebook Places.
  • Almost 70 per cent think their friends use Facebook Places and status updates to appear cooler than they really are. 

Josh Earl’s ultimate tips to be ‘phone cool’:

  • Give hot iPhone apps prime real estate on your home screen: This way others can view how cool you really are when you leave your iPhone oh so casually on the table or just frequently flaunt your home screen. My picks? JJJ, Time Out, any street style or music blogs, luxe high fashion brands (because you’ll get so much use out of Gucci)…
  • Move the dud (aka useful) iPhone apps out of sight: There’s nothing wrong with a banking app or Frequent Flyers or some organisational tool that you probably get the most use out of, but really this just screams boring and responsible to your peers if left on the front screen.
  • Fake it so you don’t have to make it (to the actual location): You only have to be approximately within one kilometre of your faux location to choose it, so rather than check-in to Pie Face or Maccas after work drinks, why not choose a more respectable venue nearby, like the Ivy in Sydney or Cookie in Melbourne??

Top cool places to do a faux check-in:

  • Sydney – The Ivy, North Bondi Italian, Gazebo, Hugos
  • Melbourne – The Supper Club, 161, Cookie, Section 8
  • Adelaide – Salt, Fumoblue, The Apothecary
  • Perth – Little Creatures Brewery
  • Brisbane – Press Club, Cloudland


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