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Some 60.5% of the UK population, or 36.8 million people, went online at least once per month in 2007, and of those, 30% – or 11 million people – visited social network sites at least once per month, eMarketer estimates.

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“The strong growth is an indicator of the level of interest consumers have in online social networks,” said Debra Aho Williamson, eMarketer senior analyst specializing in social networks.

Moreover, online social network ad spending in the UK and Western Europe is expected to reach $555 million in 2008, rising to more than $1.5 billion in 2012:

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Though Facebook continues to trail MySpace in the US, it has overtaken its main rival in worldwide unique users.

With almost 20 foreign-language versions of the site, starting with French, German and Spanish, Facebook has seen continuous growth throughout Europe. Moreover, with a new Chinese-language version, it is beginning its growth trajectory in Asia, eMarketer said.

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