Facebook takes off

MySpace and Bebo have continued to dominate the UK social networking category in April 2007, with 67% of category visits. But, according to FT.com, visits to Facebook have surged since the social networking site opened its doors to the general public last September and added new features, although its market share continues to lag behind that of MySpace. The surge in traffic at Facebook comes amid continued interest in the site from numerous media companies and an on-again off-again rumoured mega Yahoo! buyout.

John Battelle, "king of search" writes: "Facebook gets generally positive reviews after its first developer conference. "The anti-Myspace" seems to be the buzz."

Social bookmarking and networking: how involved are you? asks Problogger, explaining it all at the link. 

Facebook is the Microsoft Office of social apps, writes Tim O’Reilly himself on O’Reilly Radar. From Tim’s post: "So claims Paul Kedrosky. In other words, none of the apps are particularly good — photo sharing, status updates, personal pages, events, groups, etc. — let alone being as good as their standalone counterparts — Flickr, Twittr, Typepad/Wordpress, Google Group, etc. — but most people don’t care. They just want their social software all in one place, all from the same interface, and then they want to move on and get their (social/presence) work done.  It’s easy to dismiss this comment as facile and slightly mean. But I think Paul is onto something, especially when, as he notes, Facebook is moving smartly to create a platform layer to tie all these applications together."

Interesting that I should read all this in the two days following Cathy, age 16, telling me that she has just opened an account on Facebook because it is "much better" than MySpace. Cathy did not put it as persuasively as Tim O’Reilly, but I’m listening.

(And here is a postscript for those with long memories: "Friends Reunited, the once-mighty precursor to social networking for UK school alumni, is finally going to get a further television outing. ITV has exploited the 18 million-member community precious little since it bought it for £175 ($347) million in December 2005 (a TV ad campaign for the site, which also involved sponsoring several ITV shows, looked suspiciously like an easy way to bolster the broadcaster’s ailing ad revenue). Now, though, the website will be joined up with ITV2’s Streetmate dating show, which “will be supported by a dating site developed with Friends Reunited”.")

 

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