Tuesday, February 17, 2009

2009 is the year of Facebook

It continues to amaze me - since December, a steady flow of my friends from grade school, high school, and college have been joining Facebook. But before December it was very quiet. I wonder what happened suddenly to make this happen?

In any case, the fact is that, at least with my relatively small, skewed sample population, Facebook is exploding. And this jibes with compete.com's most recent survey showing that Facebook has passed Myspace as the top social networking site.

[The following added 2/17/09 11:05 AM]

An article in Fortune magazine notes that 18- to 24-year-olds now make up less than a quarter of users - that the newer members are more "mature". But the article doesn't get to the underlying reason why this is so. Younger people are already more in touch with their friends. They see them at school, they see them at events, they see them in the bars. So how much do they need Facebook? Compare this to the more "matured". After college, people start to move to other geographic locations, pair off, get married, and have kids. As that happens, contact between friends inevitably becomes less frequent - and, in the past, often nonexistent. And even if people are happy with their choices, there's a real sense of loss. So now along comes Facebook. As people join - as the network effect takes effect - these "communities" of grade school, high school, and college friends come back together. And the sense of loss lessens. That's powerful.

2 comments:

7Warners said...

I just "found" your blog, and like your observations on the Facebook activies. I, personally have been on for over a year but didn't bother doing much on it just observe my older children's activities. (my 5 and 10 yr olds would get on for some of the apps.) I had the same experience with "older" friends joining FB and then looking for classmates because of the reunion (only our class would hold a reunion for our 31st, just couldn't get orginized in time.)

Bill said...

Glad you found my blog and found value in my comments. The recent change I've noticed amazes me every time I think about it - it's like a light switch was turned on, and everyone is piling into the room.

Loved your comment about your class reunion - but 31 years after high school we start to lose our memories, ya know?