Social networking is nothing new, but Facebook has managed to make itself pretty popular, particularly among more mature users who don’t want to walk into a website filled with teenage angst and ROFLcopters all over the place.
It became a great site for college students to connect and an even better place to find people that you haven’t seen in years. As a result, many people became addicted to Facebook. For bloggers and website owners, it also has the advantage of helping you increase RSS subscribers too.
For these and other reasons, Facebook is arguably even more popular than MySpace. You could even say that some people take Facebook too far. Well, the honeymoon period is over. Or at least that’s what a couple of studies seem to be indicating.
I was reading the local newspaper yesterday and there was a story in there about how the number of people logging on to Facebook in the United Kingdom dropped by 400,000 between December and January. Going further, Kaan Yigit of Solutions Research Group says that the growth rate of the social networking site has “slowed considerably in Canada over the past few months.” Yigit attributes this to “Facebook fatigue” and getting tired of the site is more of a phenomenon with users over the age of 40.
Is Facebook suffering a slow and painful death? There are several factors that may be playing into its eventual demise.
- Rising Fears: As Facebook becomes more commercial, people are starting to get more concerned about how they’re going to use all that personal information. You’d be amazed how much Facebook knows about you.
- Stupid Applications: Part of the reason why many people chose Facebook over MySpace was because the former has a much cleaner interface than the latter. As more of those applications find their way into profile pages, the distinction of “cleanliness” becomes a little more muddled.
- Rise of Twitter: I haven’t signed up for it yet, but it seems like Twitter is the new Facebook. At least among the more tech-savvy blogger-type.
- Standard Boredom: We have short attention spans and unless you’re stellar and/or continue to offer something new, people will leave for newer (and not necessarily greener) pastures. This ties in with Twitter.
How about you? Does Facebook still interest you or have you moved on? I’m still on there and it’s mostly because so many people I know are on there. If it wasn’t for Facebook, I wouldn’t have been informed of at least two weddings and one childbirth.