Facebook users in April and July 2015 in Azerbaijan, according to Facebook


I’ve written some blog posts in the past about using Facebook’s ad data to tell us how many people use Facebook in a particular location, comparing it with World Bank population data.

Here’s an update. I collected this information on April 3, 2015 and July 16, 2015.

In April, there were 1,600,000 Facebook users in Azerbaijan and in July, Facebook says, there were 1,500,000. That’s about 16% of the total population of Azerbaijan.

Gender differences abound. In both April and July, Facebook says that there are about 1,000,000 male Facebook users, which is about 28% of the total Azerbaijani male population. In both April and July, Facebook says that there are 520,000 Azerbaijani women on the site, about 11% of the total female Azerbaijani population. That means there are nearly 2 men on Facebook for every 1 woman (1.92 to be exact). 67% of Azerbaijani Facebook users are men, 35% are women.

When we look specifically at young people, gender imbalance is similar, although more young women are on the site certainly than older women. Of the 280,000 (or 290,000 in April) Azerbaijani Facebook users ages 13-18, 180,000 are male and 94,000 are female, so that means there are 1.9 boys for everyone 1 girl in the teenage age ranges. We don’t have population data on this age grouping, so it is hard to compare to the total population.

However, we do have population data on 15-24 year olds. Facebook says there are 780,000 Azerbaijani Facebook users ages 15-24 as of July (810,000 in April though), which is 48% of the Azerbaijani population of that age. So almost half of all Azerbaijani youth are on the site. (For comparison though, 80% of Armenian and over 116% (double profiles surely) of Georgian 15-24 year olds are on the site, so that’s a huge difference.)

But of those 15-24 year old Azerbaijanis on Facebook, we again see gender differences. 62% of the male population of that age are on the site and 33% of the female population are, a perfect 2:1 ratio of males:females.

We do not see these gender differences at any age level in Armenia and Georgia. Georgia is always even and Armenia is fairly close to perfectly split.

Please feel free to ask any questions and I can also play around with data on request. There is so much demographic information to mine.

I’ll update with Armenia and Georgia in the coming days.

September 2014 – Facebook ad suggestions at Facebook use in Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia

This is an update to this post from January and this post from March.

It is hard to know how many people in a country are using Facebook, but through Facebook’s Ad selling program, you can get some rounded information. The numbers they give are not exact, so these percentages displayed below are not accurate for the true number of users. THESE RESULTS MAY NOT ADD UP TO REASONABLE 100%S. I calculated everything from the actual population. So when it says 36% of Georgian women are X, I calculated from the population data from the World Bank. This isn’t SOLID information, but it does come FROM Facebook, so it is a little bit better than SocialBakers.

This is what it looks like to find out this information:


So, Armenia has 2,974,184 people, Azerbaijan 9,590,159 people, and Georgia 4,555,911 people total according to the World Bank and after I subtracted those age 0-14 (World Bank’s category, not mine) the populations are Armenia: 2,460,436; Azerbaijan: 7,419,487; Georgia: 3,855,233.

Facebook Ads says that this many people in each of those countries is a potential viewer of their ads (thus a Facebook user): Armenia: 580,000 (in January) 620,000 (in March) 680,000 (in September) ; Azerbaijan: 1,320,000 (in January) 1,380,000 (in March) 1,460,000 (in September); Georgia: 1,220,000 (in January) 1,280,000 (in March) 1,380,000 (in September).

Thus, here are the percentages of the age 14+ populations of each country who are on Facebook:



Armenia: 28%
Azerbaijan: 20%
Georgia: 36%

So that is interesting, but let us look at gender differences (I took the direct gender population data from the age distribution tables – this is not 50/50, but more accurate).



Armenians and Georgians are evenly distributed gender-wise on Facebook. And Azerbaijanis, well, this gender difference isn’t surprising.



In terms of the balance of users, Armenians are fairly even, Georgians have a bit more women and you can see that about 2/3rds of Azerbaijanis on Facebook are men. Although this may seem shocking, this is much better than it has been in previous years.




Wow Georgia! Most Georgian young adults are on Facebook, no doubt about that. About half of Armenian young adults and for Azerbaijan 60% of male young adults and a little over a third of female young adults.

For comparison, here’s Caucasus Barometer derived information from 2012 and 2013.

Azerbaijan and gender online 2013 sneak peek

Okay okay okay… a sneak preview.

Previous posts on Azerbaijan and gender online for context…

* Gender online, Azerbaijan, 2012, Caucasus Barometer
* Regional and gender Internet activities, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, 2012, Caucasus Barometer
* Internet infographic, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, 2012, Caucasus Barometer
* Social networking sites, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, 2012, Caucasus Barometer
* All technology, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia (with gender and regional), 2011, Caucasus Barometer
* All technology, Azerbaijan (with gender), 2011, Caucasus Barometer

And here’s one sneak peek at what’s going on in Azerbaijan with women getting online in 2013.


2013 Internet Penetration – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia

My favorite day of the year is here! No, not Fat Tuesday – but new Caucasus Barometer data day!

I’ll be posting a variety of analyses over the coming weeks, but here’s the one everyone loves – percent of adult Internet users in each country.

First, let us all acknowledge that I hate talking about Internet penetration because I think that it is meaningless to talk about percentage of users without contextualizing the economic, social, political, and cultural environment in which Internet use exists.

And here are dozens of other posts about technology use in the Caucasus.

This is data from the Caucasus Barometer, which is a trustworthy source. Read more about it at the link or check out their page and play around with the data. These results are all for adults.

First, this year’s distribution:


You can see that a large percentage of Caucasians aren’t using the Internet. Again, I’d rather be talking about who those people are (poorer, older, rural, less educated, women) than just percentages, but alas, this is what you all want, isn’t it? ;) You can also see that most Internet users are online daily, although in Azerbaijan, they’re fairly divided between daily and once a week.

Now, on to the trends over time:

Next, those who ever use:


Ever used – this is a bit meaningless, as the benefits of Internet use are certainly relative to how often one is using it. Getting online less than one a month is an entirely different experience than being online daily (or all day long as is often the case.) But again, people are really interested in this. Each country saw some growth, but certainly the growth will  slow down as time passes.

Daily use trends:


In my eyes, daily use is the most meaningful measure here. Those who are online daily are getting the most out of their Internet use. Once again, you can see that there is a huge gap between Armenia and Georgia with Azerbaijan. I’ve discussed this at length, but one reason for this is the lower percentage of Azerbaijani women online. But there are other reasons too. In the coming weeks I’ll elaborate on this.

For those that wonder if these Azerbaijan numbers are legitimate, I point you to this blog post.

Coming soon with be posts on:

gender differences
social networking site use
ownership of technology

I’m happy to answer questions!

The Internet is Good For You!

The Internet is a strange thing. In the early life of the Internet there was a lot of rhetoric about how bad the Internet would be for all sorts of things – relationships, social life, civic engagement, etc. Now we know that 1) the Internet is here to stay and 2) the effects of the Internet aren’t really good or bad, but that affordances of the Internet (or any technology) can impact particular social processes/mechanisms in ways that change outcomes.

This week there is a tremendous effort in Azerbaijan to raise money for a young woman with cancer. The Internet and social media allow for word to spread about the campaign, give information on how to donate, and promote the campaign through photos. Moreover, the social aspect of social media allows people to share the campaign with their friends, show that they are themselves participating (and thus showing everyone – hey! I’m a good person!), and additionally give a little FU to the government medical system that is unable to pay for this young woman’s treatment.

Because of this, as well as my graduate course I’m teaching about pro-social outcomes of technology use, I wanted to test to see the Internet and social media’s influence on particular pro-social outcomes (of civic engagement specifically) in Azerbaijan.

I did some analysis with the 2012 Caucasus Barometer and here is what I found.

Donating to charity (even via SMS) is popular in Azerbaijan with 18% of adults having done it in the last 6 months. Education, economic status, and being male mattered a lot here, but Internet frequency did too! Surprisingly perhaps, being a member of a social networking site had no effect.

Volunteering (without compensation) is complicated in post-Soviet environments, yet it is also fairly popular in Azerbaijan with 22% of adults having volunteered in the psat 6 months. We know that those that do volunteer are younger and better educated. So I tested (binominal regression) the impact of Internet frequency on volunteering, controlling for urbanness, sex, age, economic status, and education. The most important determinant of volunteering was being male (men 1.5 times as likely to volunteer as women), then economic status and education (both were 1.25x as likely to participate if you were higher in these things), but regardless, Internet frequency mattered too, with frequent Internet users being 1.09x as likely to volunteer.

One form of civic engagement (which some may argue is actually a form of protest or dissent) is sending a letter to a newspaper or TV or radio station. We already know that the people that tend to do this are more politically and civically engaged, so I controlled for urbanness, sex, age, economic status, and education. And I found that more frequent Internet users were 1.27 times as likely to sending a letter or call a media station. Social networking site users were 1.2X as likely to do this as well. Importantly though, less than 5% of Azerbaijani adults actually did this!

Cultural capital is often measured by participating in cultural activities. The Internet matters here too. Frequent Internet users were 1.25X as likely to go to the theatre or cinema than less frequent Internet users. But really what mattered here was living in Baku. Bakvuians are 6x as likely to go to these things, unsurprisingly, although regional city dwellers went too. Economic status and education mattered here too. But only 11% have done this in the last 6 months.

So looks like the Internet is a “good” thing in terms of these outcomes in Azerbaijan.

The Internet Cafe is dead – most Armenians get online at home

More from the new Alternative Media USAID-CRRC dataset.

Most Armenians are getting online (primarily) from home. (I wish that it had had some sort of ranking or estimate of hours, but it is what it is.)



And how do people get online at home? Cable, 3G flash card, and still dial up (I can do a breakdown by urban/rural if people are interested.)



I’ll do another post about mobile Internet in the future.


What are Armenians doing online in 2013?

Here’s an update to this 2012 post.


Green is of Internet users and blue is for all Armenian adult citizens.

In the near future I’ll do a break down of these activities by region, sex, etc.

In this recent publication of mine, we show that rural, less educated, and poorer Armenians weren’t engaging in capital-enhancing activities like news reading or blogging. Will this still be true in 2013?

Let’s have a data party

Last year I wrote a blog post about triangulating different data sources. I used the example of mobile phone ownership and the ITU, Caucasus Barometer, and Gallup. In that post I said:

“The point I’d like to make is that these statistics are complicated and it is hard to get at the “right” number. That’s why we try to triangulate — look at different sources of data to see if things seem right. We also should always assess the credibility of the source of the data.

Data sources:

ITU is the UN’s official statistics and these numbers come from the governments themselves who usually get the numbers from the telecommunications companies. These companies count number of SIM cards sold and it is not unusual for people to have multiple SIM cards. This is data to be highly skeptical about. For the question about mobile penetration, this isn’t actually percent, it is number of mobile phones per 100 people.

Caucasus Barometer, Gallup, and EBRD are surveys taken face-to-face in households. All use different sampling techniques and are collected by different organizations. None are perfect, but they’re as good as we’ve got. Of the three, I trust Gallup the least.

All of these were collected at different times of the year.

Margin of error varies in all of these.

A ~4-6 point difference is within the margin of error and shouldn’t be looked at with too much suspicion.”

With those same rules applying, here are some results from different sources from Azerbaijan.




For what it is worth, I LOVE having more data. The more data we have measuring similar things, the more sure we can be of the results. 2010 is a great year here because of the 4 data sources (for some questions). But please, reach your own conclusions about what the “correct” percentage is.

PS, I hate penetration rates.

PPS, here is a similar comparison of Armenia’s statistics from a few years ago. And here’s one for Armenia specifically on mobile comparison.