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Facebook Is On Fire, MySpace May Be Fading.

Posted by: Bruce Nussbaum on June 13, 2007

Facebook is hot. You hear it all over the US and Britain. Corporations may love Second Life, but smart people are pouring into Facebook and it apparently is exploding.

Marc Andreesen, Netscape and Ning co-founder, has a great analysis of why Facebook is the new net platform in his blog. Basically, what’s happened is that on May 24, Facebook launced a set of application programming interfaces (API’s)and services that permit developers to introduce new features and content. Since they people have been pouring in to introduce and register new applications and users of Facebook are adding those applications to their pages.

Andreesen argues what Facebook is doing is far more sophisticated that what MySpace is doing. Once you start using new application on Facebook, it notifies your friends and they can start using it as well. A new application can spread to millions of users very quickly. Perhaps most important, new applications can run ads and sell products and services—and you get to keep all the revenue.

One of the most important pages of the latest Inside Innovation is the INdata page which shows how social media is a fast-moving construct that different demographic groups move through quickly. Just as corporations are discovering Second Life and MySpace, a big chunk of their customers are shifting to Facebook. And the folks at Facebook are rewriting the rules of social media, even as we speak, with their brilliant introduction of a suite of widgets that make it perhaps the most inviting platform out there.

Bottom line, the future of the web may be services, entertainment and information coming to you via your own page rather than you chasing around for each and every thing. The relaunch of the Facebook social networking site may be a quiet revolution in the making.

Reader Comments

Ben Arent

June 14, 2007 6:08 PM

Hey Bruce! Good to see your posting about facebook. The news feeds and photo sharing ability . (Largest online photo sharing service.. apparently) Are the solid foundation of the the service. But with the new API, I can see facebook becoming the portal for much of online, and real services.

I was recently inspired to create my own mobile product for facebook which is based on the foundations of connections. (not on music.. sorry iphone). the Industrial design is pretty bad, but i try to push the concept. I think the idea of RFID based crowd search bring something really interesting to mobile devices.

BTW. If its the next big thing, Why Don't you have an account?

Bruce Nussbaum

June 14, 2007 6:17 PM

I'm thinking of it. It's all about time.

Ben Arent

June 14, 2007 7:58 PM

Like all social sites it only really has value if people you know are using the service. I'm only really intressted in my friends, I don't care about the 'emos kids'. The great thing about facebook is that it creates a small local network, with potential to connect with people on a larger network.

Facebook seems a lot more personal than myspace, more authentic. A example of this can be that your friends can tag you in photos, and vise versa. This means that your photos are from all over the place. And not just a 'false good looking' shoots of yourself.


June 17, 2007 4:32 AM

This article is a BIT of hype. if you check reputable webstats like comscore or compete, the numbers do not show what you are arguing here. Myspace continues to grow faster than facebook.

we'll see if that changes. lately it seems like the press has jumped on the bandwagon here w/o conducting any due diligence on their "facts."


June 28, 2007 2:08 PM

Myspace also crashes all the time and is vulnerable to SQL Injection attacks.

PHP works way better ! haha But I guess you already knew that since you read comscore or compete.

The design is way better on facebook. I think that was his main point if you read the article. He is not saying myspace has X amount of users versus Facebooks # of users.. That doesn't matter it's the Functionality!

Julia Styles

July 2, 2007 9:08 PM

I have accounts on myspace and facebook, but I enjoy and spend far more time on facebook. It is easier to use, more pleasing to the eye, and gives more information in a shorter amount of time. Myspace continues to crash or I have to listen to annoying music as soon as I enter a site. I appreciate how Facebook has controlled their advertising in the past, and kept their site fairly clean.

I think the applications are a clever way to advertise, but I am concerned facebook has the potential to get as messy as myspace.

As far as discovering that facebook is a great place to advertise--well, college students have known the power of Facebook since its conception. More advertisers should find ways to use the site. It's up to facebook designers to keep the site clean.

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Want to stop talking about innovation and learn how to make it work for you? Bruce Nussbaum takes you deep into the latest thinking about innovation and design with daily scoops, provocative perspectives and case studies. Nussbaum is at the center of a global conversation on the growing discipline of innovation and the deepening field of design thinking. Read him to discover what social networking works—and what doesn’t. Discover where service innovation is going and how experience design is shaping up. Learn which schools are graduating the most creative talent and which consulting firms are the hottest. And get his take on what the smartest companies are doing in the U.S., Asia and Europe, far ahead of the pack.

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