The Whole Enchilada

Thoughts on life, work, tech & biz and the whole enchilada

Interesting thoughts: Why Facebook is not the future of the web

Posted by wholeenchilada on December 11, 2007

The internet is full of chatter on Facebook – they’re getting sued, they’re growing like crazy, and let’s not even bother with the whole “beacon” ad fiasco. Have you seen this post from Matt Frye over at o’reilly: ? Pretty interesting opinions:

1) Facebook is experiencing – With more than 150,000 new users signing up daily, it is growing three times as fast as rival MySpace. Growth like that can’t last forever and the investiment to maintain either the growth, the infrastructure to handle the growth, or both, is huge. Despite all the hype, MySpace is still the leader in social networking. Facebook still has quite a way to go before catching up with MySpace, and if that ever happens, it will also reach a plateau.
2) Facebook is not for sale – While independence is a nice sentiment, Facebook needs cash to survive. Initial investors are all smiles and “we want you to succeed” when handing over that initial $38 million, but the whole point is to make a profit. In July, Mark Zuckerberg said, “We’re not looking to IPO anytime soon. It’s just not the core focus of the company.” The next wave will come from the $1 billion that Facebook refused or from investors in some other IPO.

3) Facebook doesn’t respect users – Social advertising and features like Beacon have led thousands of users to sign petitions opposing them. Facebook is alienating its core audience. According to security researchers at Computer Associates, Facebook is collecting shopping information even when users are logged out of their system and have opted out of sharing their purchases.

4) Facebook is getting sued – Zuckerberg’s Harvard buddies claim he stole the idea. Even if the lawsuits are bogus, lawsuits tend to drive away investors and users who worry about getting entangled in bad situations. Lawsuits are also expensive, even if you win.


5) Facebook is full of useless crap and kinda slow – Poke, zombie, whatever.

Read more here: http://www.oreillynet.com/onlamp/blog/2007/12/why_facebook_is_not_the_future1.html

Some interesting thoughts, most I agree with. As for Facebook being full of “useless crap”, I think that’s based on perspective. A lot of folks use the internet for entertainment (maybe it should be called the Intertainmentnet?), to kill time, relax, and have fun, and calling their fun stuff, games and time wasters “poo” is probably a bit subjective.  

As for the future of Facebook? I don’t think it’s going away anytime soon. A lot of us thought Yahoo! was just a fad and it’s still around, and that little company called Google kept growing until it bursted, and is often referred to as a Microsoft competitor. So who’s to say what the next 3-5 years will bring for Facebook. My bet is that they’ll still have a loyal user base, though something bigger, better, faster, and more-hyped will have lured away people looking for the next big thing and attract more new users through hype and word of mouth from the hip folks. But then again, what do I know 😉

image by Cor at Brainless Contemplations blog: http://hardcor.wordpress.com/2007/05/03/what-happens-in-facebook-stays-in-facebook/

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One Response to “Interesting thoughts: Why Facebook is not the future of the web”

  1. While kicking around here after the holiday gift opening I was talking with my Nephew and teasingly asked if he was going to post on his Facebook account all the stuff he got for his new laptop. He seriously looked at me to reply with ‘Yaw, I wonder which one I will post it on’…when I asked how many accounts he had, he just shrugged his shoulders and said ‘I don’t know! At least 12…or more’..

    This got me into asking more questions and what I found out is that my 20 year old nephew is probably just one of millions who instead of remembering their passwords just open up another account. Quickly doing the math will tell you that Facebook, and all of the social networks, are really riding a tiny bubble promoting something like the number of members it has being in the millions as being an unverifiable fact.

    My nephew further explained, he doesn’t use Facebook much anymore…he has his own private social network he created as a college project that is ‘a lot cooler and less lame than FB’. I think from what I am hearing is Facebook might be built like a ‘House of Cards’ and Mark Z. might want to reconsider the $1billion and take the money and run. It will not be long before the advertisers catch on to these numbers and with lack of sales from the hits to their ads they will quit paying for all of the ads we see online.

    My New Years prediction is more private country club style social networking groups will be popping up forcing the big dogs to be holding a site full of inactive member profiles. If I was someone wanting to socialize with someone going to an inactive site would not be very much fun or entertaining, would it?

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