A recent PC World article declared that Facebook is past its prime and preparing to pull a MySpace-like fall from the public’s use, affection and attention.
Author Hillary Rhodes says defection to Twitter, having too many friends, and the bloat of quiz updates littering news feeds all contribute to the site’s demise. While there is definitely some truth to her claims, I’m not sure that any of them are significant enough to bring down Facebook.
Rhodes bases her assumption on the fact that people who actually take the time to update their Facebook profile have nothing better to do. Twitter users are mobile – they’re not tied to their computer. People who have lives don’t waste time letting their “friends” and “fans” know about what they’re up to. Active people don’t have time to generate meaningful, enjoyable content for their friends to peruse.
This points to a basic misunderstanding of how people use Facebook. Today, there are few better options for creating and managing an event and invite list, sharing and tagging photos with friends or connecting with long-lost classmates or colleagues. Even if I only make an initial contact, sending nary a status update their way, there is still value in “friending” a person that I might have never been able to find before.
Additionally, for companies, Facebook provides opportunities to interact with your customers or clients that far surpass what is possible on Twitter. A company’s page can help create connections between fans, foster discussions that go beyond what can be communicated in 140 characters or less, share and tag photos and videos of products or team members and, perhaps most importantly, track the activity and membership of your page.
No matter how much I love and use Twitter, these features will keep me coming back to Facebook on a regular basis.
Now, if Facebook starts allowing people to “pimp” their profiles or I get a bunch of friend requests from scantily clad women in Vancouver, all bets are off and I’m moving on.