44 Percent of Americans Still Pretending They Don’t Google Themselves

56 percent at least cop to vanity searching

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Let’s face it, we’ve all Googled ourselves. And to say you haven’t means you’re either confused about using that thing the young ones call the Internet or genuinely don’t care about your online presence. But vanity searching, or “Googling” ourselves, is all too common in an era dominated by social media narcissism, selfies and a societal penchant for oversharing.

MOREStop Staring at Your Facebook Profile: It Could Be Making You Stupid)

But a new Pew Research survey conducted in April and May of this year found that 56 percent of Americans admitted using a search engine to see what information about them is available to curious netizens. Though the share of vanity searching is up from the 22 percent who confessed to searching themselves in 2009 — when the question was first asked — it’s hardly convincing that a near half of the nation feigns interest in knowing how they’re perceived online.

As Pew points out, adults under the age of 50 are more likely to monitor digital footprints, and with a thriving social media revolution upending the way we interact, it seems a bit dubious that so many Americans claim to be clueless about what they look like online. Don’t fear the mighty vanity search: Googling yourself is no more narcissistic than that goofy selfie you just Snapchatted.

MORE: Surprise! Narcissism Linked to Frequent Facebook and Twitter Use