The Gatehouse Blog

Silver surfers take on the Facebook generation

Following on from my last post, it’s great to see that Saga has launched a social networking site for the over 50s (check out this piece from The Guardian).

Saga Zone created a real buzz during its trials – more than 13,000 ‘silver surfers’ signed up during the four month pilot – and the site has recently been launched in a blaze of publicity.  It’s early days, but apparently the site is proving a big hit amongst seniors – the oldest user so far is a youthful 87.

This isn’t the first site to be aimed at mature web users, but it’s certainly helped draw attention to an online trend that’s gone largely unnoticed by the rest of us. According to the media regulator Ofcom, surfers over 50 account for nearly a third of all time spent online by British web users. And there we were thinking it was all teenagers and twenty-somethings.

David Ferrabee recently told the story of his neighbour, Dorothy, who it seems is more advanced in her use of the web than many recent graduates. There are clearly a lot of Dorothys and Alberts out there – and they’re not at all phased by this stuff.  Move over Generation Y!