Happy belated birthday Facebook. I know I am late (probably slow too) but I gonna wish and write it anyway. It all began exactly 10 years ago in the afternoon of Wednesday, February 4, 2004 and now Facebook is 10 years old and still going strong. In 2004, Facebook had a million users, and it all began in the US colleges where Facebook was born. And now it has grown like a virus (no pun intended). Today it has nearly 1.2 billion users 900 times the users it originally had in the beginning. And anyone with an internet connection and the age over 12 can use Facebook, as it is available in almost every country, in 70 languages.
Half of the US population is on Facebook and that is saying something about the power and influence of a social networking site over the lives of US citizens. Even when two billion people are online in the world, 1 in every 3 online users are on Facebook. And not only that the stats show that 1 in every 7 minutes spent online by internet users all around the world is on Facebook.
Facebook’s users nearly spend about 8-9 hours on the network per month. Or nearly 23-24 minutes every day.
If you want to talk about connections or the closeness of the people online all around the world then you would love to hear this, that on an average there is only 3.74 degrees of separation between two Facebook users.
Forget about the users for a second and think about how much data would that be? Facebook takes more than 100 petabytes of storage to store your personal life on the web which includes your photos, videos and status updates. That size of data would be even larger than some of the biggest libraries in the world. For instance it is 100,000 times bigger than the Library of Congress.
That’s really a lot of data .All that data does really raise concern of the privacy of nearly 1.2 billion people on Facebook. Facebook has a data record of every user categorized in 47 categories. And if you consider it for a moment some may amount that to over 1,000 pages of a book about their life if they tried to print it all out. That could be used to write biographies of the people if you want to. Your past, your present and your future will always will leave a digital print of your existence and you will be remembered in the history of the digital world forever because of Facebook’s timeline presentation of people’s life. It also uses a lot of that data to sell highly targeted advertisements.
When it all began my friends use to ask me how Facebook earns money because if a thing grows out to be this big it gotta be earning a lot of money. And I used to be confounded at the time, but when I did research on the subject I was astonished to see the figures. Facebook does make a lot of money.
• In 2005, Facebook had a revenue stream of around 50 million dollars.
• In 2009, that figure soared and got raised to nearly 777 million dollars.
• In 2011, they reached the mark of billion dollars .They had a revenue stream of approximately 3.7 billion dollars at that time. Can you even imagine that?
That’s like five times increase in just 2 years between 2009 and 2011,.
• And the now the marketing fact is, all that cash comes from advertising. I never would have predicted that thing ever at that time.
• But now the modern times have given rise other income sources to Facebook like games and apps which are money earner niches as well.
Now on a more serious note, what if Facebook just stops growing and gaining new users?
In 2009, its growth was approximately 22.8% in the quarter charts. But in 2012 the figures dropped down to as low as 6.6%.
Facebook is not number one social networking site everywhere in the world. For instance, in Russia, the top social media site is vKontakte.
Facebook’s markets (its users and its appeal to the audience) have become saturated, and most people in the Western side of the hemisphere who might use Facebook already do. So to keep growing, it needs to find millions of new users somewhere else.
And where would it find its new users?
According to the new stats Facebook and twitter are loosing followers especially teens. Teens see Facebook as a place only for mom and dad, they’re likely to adopt a new hang out online of their own. And, Facebook may go the way of Myspace and the dinosaurs and become extinct. But buying whats app was a bold move on Mark Zuckerberg’s part. And that too for 19 billion dollars. Phewww…that’s steep.
I think with the phenomena of dark sharing prevailing the web now Facebook will need to make some drastic changes to come on top again. Because people are becoming more paranoid about sharing their life on Facebook and are resorting more towards private sharing and messaging.
What’s your opinion ? What do you think will happen? Is there a definite chance that Facebook will bounce back?