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Four out of 5 Facebook users say they wouldn't pay $1 a month to banish ads on the social network, according to a recent survey by user research firm Alpha.

Expand chart
Data: Alpha; Graphic: Harry Stevens/Axios

Why it matters: Facebook is reportedly test-marketing a paid, ad-free version of its service. Despite the recent onslaught of news about the Cambridge Analytica data privacy scandal and the "#deletefacebook" movement it inspired, the company's vast user base may not be discontented enough to force a business-model change on Facebook.

Pay or leave? Alpha surveyed 1163 Facebook users. In other results, respondents overwhelmingly said that they'd leave the service if the company began to charge $1 per month for key features like private messaging, seeing/registering for events, and seeing/registering for groups.

  • One-on-one messaging: 84% would probably leave Facebook, 16% would pay.
  • Events: 87% would probably leave Facebook, 13% would pay.
  • Groups: 84% would probably leave Facebook, 16% would pay.

Breaking up is hard: Of users asked which social media service they've stopped using, 38% said "none," followed by 33% for MySpace —suggesting that a mass exodus is unlikely.

  • Of those who did stop using a social media service, the top reasons were a lack of network or family and friends, and a lack of the features they wanted.

But, but, but: Facebook users nevertheless don't seem to trust social media services, including Facebook, with their data.

  • Asked how concerned they are about their privacy on social media, 26% gave a "5," or "extremely concerned," rating, with another 28% giving their concern a "4" and 31% choosing a "3" rating.
  • When asked how trustworthy they they find Facebook to keep their data secure, 43% chose a "3," followed by 19% rating it a "2," and 12% rating it a "1," or "not at all untrustworthy."

Methodology: Alpha collected data from U.S. Facebook users between April 13 and 22. The respondent sample is balanced for gender but not across geography.

The story has been updated with information about the research methodology.

Go deeper

14 hours ago - Health

FDA advisory panel recommends Pfizer boosters for those 65 and older

A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at the Key Biscayne Community Center on Aug. 24, 2021. Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A key Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Friday overwhelmingly voted against recommending Pfizer vaccine booster shots for younger Americans, but unanimously recommended approving the third shots for individuals 65 and older, as well as those at high-risk of severe COVID-19.

Why it matters: While the votes are non-binding, and the FDA must still make a final decision, Friday's move pours cold water on the Biden administration's plan to begin administering boosters to most individuals who received the Pfizer vaccine later this month.

15 hours ago - World

France recalls ambassadors from U.S. and Australia over submarine deal

Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L), French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian (C), and French ambassador to the U.S. Philippe Etienne. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

France has taken the extraordinary step of recalling its ambassadors to the U.S. and Australia after both countries blindsided their French allies with a new military pact and submarine contract, the French Foreign Ministry announced on Friday.

The backstory: While sealing an agreement with the U.S. and U.K. to acquire nuclear submarines, Australia ripped up an existing $90 billion submarine deal with France. That led senior French officials to accuse the U.S. of a "stab in the back."

Updated 15 hours ago - World

In reversal, Pentagon now says drone strike killed 10 Afghan civilians

Caskets for the dead are carried towards the gravesite as relatives and friends attend a mass funeral for members of a family that is said to have been killed in a U.S. drone airstrike, in Kabul on Aug. 30. Photo: Marcus Yam/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A U.S. drone strike launched on Aug. 29 killed 10 civilians in Afghanistan, including seven children, rather than the Islamic State extremists the Biden administration claimed it targeted, the Pentagon said Friday.

Why it matters: U.S. Central Command said at the time that officials "know" the drone strike "disrupted an imminent ISIS-K threat" to Kabul's airport, and that they were "confident we successfully hit the target."