Facebook is just a fad that will pass
Before Facebook there was MySpace. Before MySpace there was Friendster. Somewhere in-between came Friends Reunited. And at some point in the future Facebook will fade into obscurity. Which is good.
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The Web is something rich and strange and Facebook is not
Back in 1988 before the Web arrived we used to play a lot of image based games around the internet, passing encoded images back and forth and basically working hard to make some sense of this dark network where no-one could see anyone else.
From that point on for me the internet and the web have been a rich and strange playground where each new person, each new application, each new network, added something unknowable to the sum total of where we worked and played.
Facebook doesn’t really do any of that. It’s a nice tidy ‘burb where everyone has more or less the same house, same garden, same car, same attitude.
Sure, we can all add friends and join networks and add applications, but it’s always clear that there is no curtain behind which strange things might lurk. Facebook is the uber controlled environment – useful and wanted by many, but not pregnant with potentials.
Facebook is more about the known than the unknown - and that's a good thing. Who but the most insecure of us cares about having 429 'friends', most of whom we wouldn't talk to twice if we met them in real life.
Facebook provides a way of connecting to the people you already know - but for one reason or another don't stay in regular contact with. As we get older, settle down, have kids and spend more time at work, those little catch up chats or times hanging out with friends dwindle to almost nothing. That's not to say you don't like the people you don't see as much, just that they're not in your immediate circle and the genuine desire to 'meet up soon' just never gets realised.
Facebook allows us to keep in contact with them through their status updates, when they add pictures, when someone they know tags them in a picture, when they add an app and ask a question - or in a hundred other ways.
This is a way of connecting to them and of ensuring we know what they're up to. It is therefore easier to send a quick note about their daughter or wish them a happy birthday. These small things break down the distance between us, they make the barrier of getting in touch smaller to cross - and they make the real world meetings more easy to make happen.
furthermore, facebook lacks clarity in who you are actually becoming friends with
There are only so many new people
Facebook is experiencing a huge wave of migration. This is held up as proof of the genius of Zuckerberg, and indeed in many ways they have played a blinder.
From a closed College based network, they have taken a gamble to open up to anyone and everyone and seen it pay off bigtime. The viral nature of Facebook is supreme, with member get member raised to a new artform. I’ve read dozens of articles about how all of someone’s friends have arrived in Facebook in the very recent past, usually in a great splurge of arrivals as a single outrider reports back to the group that, yup, it looks safe in here and there are lush pastures for the cattle.
Then everyone else takes up residence, and as they overlap with other social groups, the process repeats itself. There is something engaging and exciting about arriving in an easy to understand social network, with tools to explore and people to Poke (ooh, the underlying sexual thrill of it all, it reminds me of my first disco, I didn’t know what that was all about either, but by God it turned me on).
Face it, when someone invites you to join Facebook and be their friend, its a cheap thrill to sign up and be that friend.
If people want a social networking site there are millions, faceparty, hi5, bebo, myspace etc... facebook IS a fad that will pass, as some person eventually will outdo it, one of these pages will take all it's features and make something better, as myspace has done with bebo, as bebo has done with faceparty, etc..
Anyone could log onto myspace, and minus a few 'pokes', they can pretty much do the same, look at their friend's status updates, chat to their friends etc. Why should facebook be THE social networking site?
And also, myspace is the site that seems to get all the hype for getting musicians noticed. So what's the fad for bands? Myspace!
There just are no sophisticated tools in Facebook
I’m used to some level of sophistication in my toolset. I don’t mind using your online tools, after all, it’s your community. But ffs, all I can do in my Groups is write on the wall? And then you can write on the same wall back to me. I can upload photos? Every time someone does something, I get sent an email without the content.
There just are no sophisticated tools in Facebook – everything is like a shallow version of what we’re used to on the outside. For sure, the apps have started to put some depth back into the system, but it’s hard to imagine that we’ll en masse abandon our email and our IM and our other contact and memory tools and use the stubs that Facebook offers. Not for a while anyway, we’ll get disillusioned and wonder off as our attention drifts.
Getting an email without the content was annoying, though this has now changed, and there are bound to be other parts of the site which don't work as well as tools which are specifically designed for the job.
But if there is a demand for features not currently provided someone out there will provide them. And some of the features Facebook does provide, such as tagging photos, inviting others to events, and garnering support for a great cause, are great for a social network.
It's also worth considering the value of Facebook as a social aggregation tool for non-techies. Sure you're used to some sophisticated tools, but the majority of internet users aren't. They're people with non-technical jobs who just want things to work. Facebook works without anyone leaving the comfort of a great UI and the safety blanket known as a privacy controls.
There are other colours
I know this will sound very shallow and pathetic, but I really can’t imagine living with #3b5998 only for the rest of my life. As someone who was working with the web when there was not even any right align, let alone fancy layouts or the CSS wonders we see today, it pains me to have to use such a limited interface.
With respect, it is the sort of interface that the East German government would have commissioned for their citizen network if they had lived to see in the true glory of the web. Where I come from we call this colour Navy Blue and with good reason, children grow up to hate it.
Allied to the fixed layout, 3b5998 is the antithesis of everything that design stands for and everything that the web has taught us – that we are individuals and that we make and remake our environment to work with our needs and desires.
Even Google, that great interface reducer, has relented and offered multiple funky interfaces to their start pages. So what’s with the fascist control freakery? Don’t you trust me to change things the way I like ‘em? Think I might, like, go mad with funky colours? So what, that’s my freedom.
Hmmmm, Facebook or Myspace which is the easiest to use? Given most people's inability to create a readable web page I'm happy that Facebook restricts the look of its pages to one recognisable format.
Give people free reign over the look of their page and they'll go the flashy, blinky, confused way of Myspace. And there are friends I'd rather keep than lose for the knowledge of what they think looks cool.
Call that a network?
I live in Brighton & Hove, East Sussex, UK. So for some reason that’s my network. It has 54,384 members who, I guess, live in Brighton and Hove. The total population of Brighton is 247,820, which means my network contains approximately one sixth of the entire population of this town. There are only 117032 15 to 44 year olds, which means that almost 50% of them are members of my local network. Huh? I mean, this is some kind of groovy town, but I find that rather unlikely.
More to the point, what the hell am I supposed to do with a network that includes every single sentient being between the ages of fifteen and forty-five in my town? I see I can go to a costume making event at 2pm or GUILDFORD MONDAY NITE at 7pm (that’s Guildford, not Brighton, but hey). Popular in Brighton and Hove includes the facebook wide food fight and Brighton’s Largest Water Fight. The Discussion Board has 164 discussion topics, starting with ‘How Many Ways To Say I Love You?’, but frankly life’s too short. And then there’s The Wall. 754 posts starting with a bit of spam from Ben Williams.
To say the will to live deserted me at this point would be an exaggeration, but to say the will to live in Brighton and Hove fled my feeble frame just about sums it up. Why am I in this network? I am a sophisticated online denizen, I partake of and participate in hundreds of online societies and fora of all kinds. Some are good, some are bad, some are essential to life. But none are as depressingly pointless as this all consuming Brighton and Hove Network.
And yes, I know I can change my regional network, but what exactly would be the point of that? I quite like seeing my local friends’ faces peering out at me from the sidebar – but that’s not quite enough to make it worthwhile.
I guess this approach worked quite well when it was a college based network, but imagine what it is like to be a London or Shanghai network member – they’ve elevated inanity to a whole new level.
Facebook offers a unique perspective to social networking in that you can friend people you know and the people they know to an extent. I find Facebook most useful for college because it helps the organizations I'm a part of invite people to our events. I can also find out about other group's events on campus and even join a greater cause to support Darfur, let's say.
I've been able to keep in touch with people I went to kindergarten with! Granted most of them went to school with me since eighth grade, but it's interesting to see where they are based on how they were way when (the 90s for us young folks). It's cool to see how they've changed and how they've stayed the same. I've also been able to keep in touch with high school friends who I get to visit a few times a year back in California while I go to school in Philly. No matter what my url is I'm still unique. Having a long url with a combination of random numbers and letters doesn't decrease individuality at all.
Sure I have a lot of friends I don't really talk to and some I have never met, but at least it opens the door to a conversation: "Hey we're Facebook friends, right?" In fact I was walking down the street yesterday, no joke, and I saw two of my friends with one of their friends. We'd never met, but we were Facebook friends through each other. It was great to meet the guy and get to know him in person as much as it is to get to know him over Facebook.
Basically the regional network lets you see people in the same one as you and helps people know where you're from. I keep my network as Los Angeles even though I go to school in Philly. It lets my friends know where I'm from. High school and college networks help you know who that person is trying to friend you and if you actually know them from somewhere.
For now Facebook rocks. Let's hope it doesn't turn into another MySpace.
Gaining Revenue for Networking Sites is Extremely Difficult
Facebook, like MySpace, has not been able to successfully fund itself via advertisements. Click through rates are low, and MySpace has tried desperately to salvage funds from these ads. MySpace's home page is filled with ads that most users don't click on. Case in point: http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/
Unless Facebook can gain revenue from ads it will suffer and possibly go bankrupt.
Facebook knows how old I am, what interests and hobbies I have, where I live, what my social network looks like and even what my educational and work history is. Are you telling me that's not a potential goldmine for advertising?
Sure at the moment you get the generic breast enhancement and zany college t-shirt ads (or perhaps they're not generic and facebook has decided that's what I most want in life), which are going to generate as much response as any other banner and popup ads. But if Facebook can utilise it's main resource, information, it will make Microsoft's revenues look tiny.
Facebook has been slow at incorprating music
It can be argued by some that Facebook has taken over from Myspace in terms of which is the better social networking site. Although this may be valid, there is one area in which Facebook is clearly lacking - and that is music. One of the main building blocks of Myspace is the close links with music - bands can have pages on which they are able to upload their music and reach out to a new crowd, members may add a song to their profile which gives other users more of an idea what the person likes and there is even the Myspace record label, getting physical copied of music out.
Although Facebook are now beginning to add pages for artists, these are not as advanced or as easily personalised and those on Myspace. Facebook has not been built on the foundation of music so it will be more difficult now to lure over music lovers from similar social networking sites (such as Myspace, PureVolume and Buzznet) that cater more to their tastes.
Admittedly it would seem that, thanks to it's emphasis on music, Myspace is more popular amongst wanabe rock stars than Facebook.
On the other hand almost every university student in the UK (and I'm assuming the US, Australia etc) has a facebook account, in 10 to 15 years time that will mean that the majority of the best paid 50% of society in the English speaking world have facebook accounts. Let's see which contributes better to the long term survival of the respective business models.
People have been put off by scandals concerning identity fraud
If a 'fad', then Facebook's passing will only have been hastened by the widespread concerns over identity theft as reported in the UK national press.
Perhaps more importantly, people have grown increasingly aware and scrutinising of Facebook's capacity to allow potential employers to 'snoop' on one's character as an employment suitability exercise. In short, people grow less and less eager to share their lives on the web, curiously perhaps because Facebook has been thrown open to wider and wider groups of people.
Privacy controls? My friends get annoyed that they can't trawl idly through photos of me gurning drunkenly at a camera, but it means I'm less likely to get fired in the future.
And I also highly suspect that the potential employer snooping is a little bit of an urban myth, seeing as even if you drag all the privacy slider bars down to their minimum your profile is still only visible to those in your network. Just bad luck if you went to the same Uni as your prospective boss I guess.
If celebrities are punished more severely then surely other influential people should also be.
There are many people within society who make huge decisions regarding our country and who have the potential to endanger thousands of lives with thier decisions if those decisions were influenced by drugs and alcohol. It has been speculated for many years that highly trained professionals such as consultant doctors, airline pilots, and managing directors who have huge responsibilities also use drugs and alcohol to deal with the stress of these choices.
If celebrities are to be punished for their influential status surely it would only be fair to find these individuals as well and severely punish them ?
There is a trend and acceptance regarding drug taking among celebrities but celebrities lives often require them to speak in front of millions of people, they are judged constantly by society and the media and anything short on perfection is publicly ridiculed. It might be that they choose this fate for fame and fortune however if other people who benefit from this national recognition are found to be taking drugs this argument implies they too should be punished and although it might be wrong for these people to take drugs and alcohol I doubt that our country would work in the same way if these people were punished in a way that prohibited them from working for an extended period of time. Many of our greatest, artists, musicians and composers took a wide and varied selection of drugs some of which used these substances to influence their work. How in this day and age can we separate artist from celebrity.
This point does not even remotely relate to facebook
will have a large impact on coming generations...
face book and other socio s will probably be adding to the knowledge of the youths all over the world especially the teens.. its the time when the teenagers absorb the special interest on getting connected through some or the other way with their friends and contacts.... what is actually binding everyone to face book is the likes of its easy and simple networking process . face book uses a very simple way of connecting a person to another which makes it a very advanced and widely proffered compared to the others.
facebook with its such wide network would be difficult to end or quit but surely be fading out because of advancements and dynamism in peoples lives.
It helps me to communicate and stay in touch with friends
It’s accesable and easy, it’s a free way to remain in touch with people. Internationally especially.
However you have to have the acceptance of the friend you wish to be in contact with. In any case, some day, another site will pop up that makes it just as easy to communicate with people, and everyone will flock to that. MySpace usage plummeted when Facebook became popular, and when another "next big thing" emerges, no doubt Facebook usage will go the same way.
It enables people to get in touch with old friends
You can find people that you havent been in contact with for years, or maybe went to school with. Facebook is good too for students based in a university environment as they can keep in touch wth friends, online. Not only at university, but School contacts too. Its a useful way to find out how your school friends have got on in life and to even arrange a reunion. If, after all, relationships made in school fizzled out once the connection of going to school together is lost - they wouldn't have added you would they?
As a university student, facebook is simply, but wonderfully, a device to contact friends about meeting up, homework etc rather than spending phone credit by texting. Facebook. A cheapskates haven.
If you've fallen out of touch with people it's usually for good reasons. Not to say that your old friends are bad people just that you've both moved in different directions.
I've had a few different emails from long-lost friends and after the initial wonder of seeing them again there's not much which really connects us.
It's free and easily accessible
It is cost effective and has made keeping in touch with my friends from home while I’m at uni much easier. Also sometimes real-time communication is less than practical. If someone lives in a different time-zone it may be difficult to just phone the person.
What's wrong with calling them or going to visit them. We spend far too much of our time online and far too little in the real world. Facebook just makes this worse. Facebook is 'at home in your boxers' Facebook is not real world socialising. People should hang out and visit friends not scribble something on their 'wall' or go 'poking' around complete strangers.
People invest too much time in Facebook to let go.
Facebook has its pros and its cons. However, the matter of fact is that most Facebook users spend hours, days, weeks and even months customizing their profiles, finding friends, adding photos and videos, creating groups and events. This is a heavy investment and most users will never seriously consider closing their facebook accounts.
People have begun to identify themselves with their Facebook profiles. Hence, it is close to impossible for people to just get off Facebook. Facebook's Terms of Service ensures that people's social information never leaves the walls of Facebook and therefore the social network will remain very popular and influential.
Facebook has many practical applications and raises many more concerns. We have read quite a few of these in this debate. However, the question remains whether "Facebook is a fad that will just pass". I beg to differ.
The same was said of MySpace and Friendster before it. Facebook is an addiction that will run out of steam and it is one that annoys many schools colleges and universities, so much so that is has been banned from being accessed either completly or during teatching hours. I think facebook possibly has a time and a place but it annoys me when people are taking up computer suites just to chat, applicate or poke people on facebook. Students are the biggest users of facebook and spend hours on it unknown to them that half the day has gone. I think it is something which is detrimental to the health and education of thousands.
Social Networking is a whole new form of communication, of which Facebook is the most successful.
If you want to communicate with someone, in the old days you would either talk face to face or send a letter. Then came the telephone. Then came emails, further revolutionising communications.
Now there is social networking.
Social networking is different. It can be very private, or very public. People have their own 'space' or 'profile' online, which people can search for as long as they know the persons name. No number or address is required or needs to be stored (and potentially lost). When you have a persons profile, you can add them as a friend in order to socially interact with them - which they must accept to facilitate the interaction (ensuring mutual consent of communications).
When you are friends with someone, you can invite them to an event (along with an assortment of any or all of your friends) with a single click, and dispense information about that event. You can publicly display as much or little personal information about yourself as you wish. You can write on people's walls to tell them information, which other people will freely be able to see. Suddenly people become so much more informed within their social circles, and for a social animal this is broadly positive. Facebook facilitates the spread of social information (or gossip) and people often consider facebook profiles to be an authority on a person (whether they are in a relationship, etc).
Privacy is maintained however. You can still send someone a message that is as private as any email could be.
Social networking is a totally new type of communication. Facebook is one of the most successful social networking providers. Of course there will be competition, as there is for email clients and telecommunications companies. But this is not a passing fad, its a new way of communicating; publicly, privately and in a host of different ways with online gifts, pokes, groups, events and geographical networks.
Im fairly sure people thought that the telephone wouldnt catch on either. Why would you want to talk into a handset with holes in, being talked back at by the tinny voice of someone else you whose identity you can't confirm?
Social networks have hitherto been almost entirely ephemeral. Facebook and other web based social networks will endure and therefore will allow persistent connectivity to those with whom quotidian transaction has become redundant. This may transform social values within people's lifespans, and will also create durable microeconomic frameworks.
Your argument is invalid. Did you even read the topic before posting? Its not saying social networking will die out, its saying (like myspace) Facebook will fade to the next amazing social networking site
The open application platform allows endless possibilites
As literally anyone can develop facebook applications, there is a potentially limitless range of activities that could occur. For example imagine being able to see which plumber, handyman or electrician your friends use. Get feedback about how reliable, competitive and friendly they are. This application of a social network alone could make facebook a vital source of information in the future.
Knowing which plumber, electrician or handyman my friend uses is no great information. I could just ask them straight away. Another thing the open platform does is invite spam. As it allows anyone and everyone to develop applications, many useless application invites began to surface which can be termed as spam. Also with people adding so many applications, their profile page becomes more of a maze than anything else. It seems so bizarre that one has to literally hunt for a persons 'wall' to leave them a scrap.
Facebook is spam free!
Given that you're not an application addict, Facebook, other than the general advertisments that flash up on screen (which are not obtrusive) is a spam free way of communicating across your social network. Unlike other sites (notably Bebo in my experience) it is relatively easy to control the amount of emails that are sent out to you on a day to day basis. WAYN, or, Where Are You Now, is a pain the in the proverbial backside for notifications, and little does the site offer to be quite frank.
Facebook is going to find it difficult to stay "spam free" if it continues to have trouble making a return on investment for News Corp. Myspace has already been affected by a fall in click-through rates, and Facebook is likely to follow. Facebook is young and will need ad revenue to stay afloat. It's simple business. You can't create something that costs money and not make any money to keep it going. Mark Zuckerberg has seemingly already succumbed to the need to make money through advertising, and though nominally 'spam free', Facebook is already riddled with advertisements, and will continue to be so as gimmicks such as 'facebook chat' fail to attract new interest.
If you count spam as being bombarded with messages you don't want, Facebook is as prone as any similar site, with users having to trawl through dozens of invitations from new applications they have no interest in adding before seeing any real notifications.
What about those posts your friends make from time to time "I cant believe Miley Cyrus did that!". Then when you click on it, instead of it bringing you anywhere, it automatically makes you post that as your status. Then from time to time theres the similar ones that are sent through message and upon clicking it automatically makes you send it to all of your friends. Thats spam, is it not?
Social Networking is a Plus for Organizations
Facebook is not only a great tool for keeping in touch with family and friends, but it is extremely useful to promote almost anything. From campus events to new products Facebook offers amazing viral marketing capabilities.
Say Apple has a new product coming out that it wants to promote. Apple spends a great deal on advertising, but why not take advantage of the free advertising on Facebook? The Apple Students group, for example, can send messages and event invites to all of its 200,000+ contacts. How good is that, not just for Apple, but for consumers? I'll be able to learn a great deal about this new product or service without checking the Apple web site everyday for new news. Facebook can offer amazing marketing capabilities to organizations.
As a college student in a leadership position of an organization it is imperative to get high turnout for our events to show our organization's success. By pooling all our contacts together as a group, we can invite hundreds of people to our events. By being able to create detailed event invitations including Who, What, Where, When, and Why, we can become more successful as an organization on campus. Therefore Facebook is different than MySpace in that it's social networking on crack. You can network with people and then invite them to your events. It's the one-stop-shop for social networking and can provide amazing opportunities for campus organizations and companies.
you hold the same poor argument everyone else does. The fact that facebook is better than myspace is the whole point of the "yes argument". Again, we're not saying "Yes, social networking will pass". we're saying "Yes, another company will come out on top over facebook, just give it time"
The Myspace debate
Comparing Facebook to Myspace as proof that it will pass is a slim argument. Yes, Myspace did pass, despite the hours people put into improving their profiles. But there were many reasons why this happened.
Myspace did not have many of the modern features that technology brought into the world. Photo, video and music features were limited, and applications could only be added using html links. Facebook has easy accessibility to all of these features, seemingly limitless photography space, and millions of applications that can be added at the click of a button. The fact that Facebook has been slow at incorporating music is actually a point against the argument. Surely this shows how Facebook is continually developing and growing, and that a lot of time was spent developing a music program.
Spam was another major problem for Myspace, and was the reason that I left. The closest thing Facebook has to spam is those annoying "Are you single?" adverts that appear below the left-hand menu. Because the only applications that could be added to Myspace profiles were links, this opened the way for a lot of spam and virus programs to infect the profile, and your computer. With Facebook, all applications are programs run by outside companies, but proofed by Facebook and spam-free.
Also, the limitless creativity that could be given to profiles, meant that loading a profile page was a ridiculously slow process. Although creativity was the one advantage Myspace had over Facebook, surely in the light of fast-loading screens, simplicity and non-self-inputted html applications, Facebook is better for the basic stuff. Besides, I'm sure with time, Facebook will add more creative functions such as coloured profiles.
And also, people still use MySpace,orkut,friendster etc.
Ive seen it with myspace and honestly, it seems to be happening with Facebook right now. Part of the whole death of myspace and creation of facebooks massive popularity was a mix between Facebok being easy to use and myspace changing to a harder to use and ore complex interface. This whole timeline thing that facebook is introducing makes it more difficult to navigate a friends page. I honestly think this is the beginning of the downfall of facebook. Most "Facebook junkies" i know either deleted or are never on, ad im one of them!
But imagine a social networking site came out that was much more easy to use than facebook, with better ways to upload, organize, store and view pictures and videos. Something that has greater capabilities that are more dynamic and complex, but all with a much more simple user interface.
Just because we cant imagine better than Facebook in our own minds, doesnt mean it doesnt exist. Im sure there was a point when you went on Myspace and said "this is amazing, it doesnt get any better". Maybe the actual thought never processed but the feeling was probably there.
Yes, Facebook is better than Myspace, but just because its so much better than myspace doesnt mean there will NEVER be something better than facbook.
This is all a bit silly seeing as most things bar eating, drinking and reproducing are transient in the long run....
And what's your counter argument, then? Fad means a short-lived trend and has nothing to do with the Roman Empire.
The Roman Empire turned out to be 'transient in the long run', they might have been rather upset if you described them as just a fad...
Some people have pointed out that the intro of Facebook led to Myspace being abandoned. The difference is this, a very few people I know ever had myspace accounts, everyone of my age that I know has a Facebook account. That's not an exageration, I genuinely don't know anyone without one. Therefore it would make little or no sense for me to abandon facebook for another site when everyone I know is on Facebook.
Facebook is a bit like the QWERTY keyboard or English, sure ergonomic pads and Esperanto would be way better, but since everyone uses the former it's just too much faff to change.
but if something better comes out everyone would slowly make the change over. Most people i knew had Myspace before facebook and they allmade the transition. Just because more people have facebook doesn't mean it would never die. At one point in time people were riding horse and buggy. But the car still caught on....
Facebook is being updated a lot
Facebook is being updated a lot in the past years, therefore every time a new application is being updated it is growing more popular than every other site, which have even caused other social networks to form partnership with Facebook such as Twitter and Skype.
What do you think?