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[qi:109] U.S. web users tripled the amount of time they spent on social networks in August from the same month last year, according to Nielsen. And advertisers took note — estimated online advertising spending on social networks more than doubled over the same period. Around 17 […]

[qi:109] U.S. web users tripled the amount of time they spent on social networks in August from the same month last year, according to Nielsen. And advertisers took note — estimated online advertising spending on social networks more than doubled over the same period.

Around 17 percent of all time spent on the web in August in the U.S. was on social networks, up from 6 percent during the same period a year ago, suggesting that sites like Twitter and Facebook have not only grown their audience size, but augmented user engagement. Meanwhile, advertising on social networks rose to $108 million last month from $49 million in August of 2008, an increase of 119 percent.

In the meantime, Facebook’s sale of self-serve ads has helped the social network become cash-flow positive, something to which Twitter — which doesn’t generate any significant revenue despite now being valued at $1 billion — may want to pay attention. A report from research firm Interpret found that Twitter users are twice as likely to click on advertisements or sponsors than people who belong to MySpace and Facebook. But while the San Francisco-based micromessaging site recently changed its terms of service to allow advertising, co-founder Biz Stone said earlier this week that Twitter won’t put ads on the site this year.

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