What Web site is most favored by young people? MySpace? YouTube? CollegeHumor.com? Nope, think more vanilla than that.

It’s Google, according to a survey of the top 10 favorite Web sites by researcher Youth Trends.

Google was chosen as a favorite site by 34% of males and 31% of females ages 16-25. The quarterly survey was conducted in July 2006 among a representative sample of 1,200 US teens and college students. Respondents were asked, on an unaided basis, to list their three favorite Web sites.

There were some strong differences in responses between males and females. Females were more likely to list social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook among their favorites than males were. Facebook was the second most popular site among females, with 29% calling it a favorite site, but it was the fourth most popular among males (17%). Females placed MySpace third, while males ranked it fifth on the list.

"Among male respondents, Google, ESPN and Yahoo! (not necessarily always in that order) have consistently been the top three favorite sites for some time," said Josh Weil of Youth Trends.

Research by comScore agrees that Facebook and MySpace are more popular among female college students than among males.

Young females also are very interested in photo sharing – hence the appeal of Flickr. And females were more likely to list shopping sites: their favorites include eBay, Target and Amazon (the latter also a favorite among males).

"For females on the Web right now, posting and sharing photos is big, so you can essentially say: females are to digital photos as males are to sports," Weil said.

The Youth Trends survey also asked young people to list their favorites in other media. Among the choices:

  • Top TV show, males: Family Guy (31%)
  • Top TV show, females: So You Think You Can Dance (23%)
  • Top magazine, males: Sports Illustrated (21%)
  • Top magazine, females: Cosmopolitan (28%)
  • Top video game, males: FIFA World Cup 2006 (29%)
  • Top video game, females: Katamari Damacy (21%)