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Old 05-16-2010, 12:24 AM   #1
Steven Lake
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With Facebook apparently on the verge of dying, what's next?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/0..._n_576956.html

For those who haven't heard, there's been a huge stink lately about Facebook and their rather cavalier treatment of people's privacy. Given the speed at which the backlash is growing, and a number of the major app developers (Farmville being one of them) talking about abandoning ship, I expect Facebook to generally start imploding soon with the speed only increasing as people bolt for other corners of the web. But then that brings up a rather interesting question. What will replace it? MySpace is more or less dead for many of the same reasons, as well as others obviously. And none of the other networks really stack up either. But then again, that's just my 2c. What do you guys think about Facebook? Will it still be king of social networking, or is someone else going to take over? And if so, who?

Right now I'm spread across MySpace, Facebook and Twitter. The only one seeing any movement right now is Facebook, so if that goes boom, I lose a lot of eyes on my books, and other things I post, including events and so on. So I'm very concerned about where this is all going social networking wise.
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Old 05-16-2010, 12:34 AM   #2
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get ready for everyone to run from facebook to....

MobileRead! Start beefing up those servers now before they all log in an crash us down.
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Old 05-16-2010, 07:58 AM   #3
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Aah...you mean what's next for social networking, rather than for the world in general...

Because I was going to answer 'the collapse of western civilisation' initially.

I might start my version of social networking...MyFavouriteSausage.com where millions of people come together to discuss the merits of salami over bratwurst.

Should be a hit.
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Old 05-16-2010, 08:00 AM   #4
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I'll play.

Facebook? I withstood any and all pressure to join that - or any other - social networking site until a little over a month ago, when I decided to test the waters with my little self-published ode to the Golden Age of Sci-Fi, "We Don't Plummet Out of the Sky Anymore." Suddenly I was hearing from people who liked it, and wanted to know more about my writing. One of those people happened to be a lot more familiar with the way readers and writers connect in this modern world than I am, and she said, "If you are going to be serious about this the very next step you must take is to set up a Facebook 'fan' page."

I did so a few days later, because I started thinking of random authors and asking, "I wonder if Alexander McCall Smith is using Facebook?" Every time the answer turned out to be "yes," I would try to think of another author with good stories and a devoted following, to pose the same question. Very soon it became clear that as an author, I could not ignore social networking... and like it or not, that meant Facebook.

Now from the perspective of your original question, I jumped on board at what was the worst possible moment. Within days, Facebook began a campaign of massive structural changes, and got all sorts of interesting publicity. Did everyone suddenly jump ship? Nope. Did the people who had become "fans" (or under the FB NewSpeak structure, who "like" me as an author) suddenly disappear? Nope. Did I suddenly stop seeing any new fans? Nope. To my pleasant surprise, I keep getting more and more visits.

Hardly anyone, aside from vocal privacy advocates and those inclined to dig into such issues, seems to care what Facebook is doing... which is what Facebook was counting on, all along.

Am I concerned about privacy? Very. Did I tweak all my settings and opt out of anything that seemed unnecessary? You betcha. Am I going to abandon Facebook? Not unless everyone who has expressed an interest in my stories goes away first!

Social networking is here to stay. It requires a tremendous amount of energy and viral marketing out the wazoo to successfully launch a new platform. It will require much more than anything we have yet seen to topple one.

- M.

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Old 05-16-2010, 09:17 AM   #5
zelda_pinwheel
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personally, i am keeping a very close eye on the diaspora* projet : it should be coming in the next few months and will be like facebook, only with privacy.

as for social media as a marketing tool... i just came across this pertinent video :



i think facebook is shooting itself in the foot and every other part it can reach and couldn't have managed it better if it had deliberately wanted to die, and i really have to wonder about the guys running it. a lot of people i know are leaving it (inasmuch as you *can* leave it... they make it nearly impossible to delete your account, you really have to work at it) and i never post anything even remotely personal on there.

as soon as diaspora launches i'm planning to go there and try to convince my entire network to come with me.

however i think facebook still has value as a marketing tool, as has been mentioned by others, and i probably won't delete my account for that reason alone.
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Old 05-16-2010, 09:38 AM   #6
Steven Lake
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Well, yeah, I will be keeping my facebook account for all the stragglers that are sure to remain there, but I'm also highly interested in the diaspora project as well. I'm expecting quite a flood of people over there, and thus will be early in the door to maximize my potential market.
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Old 05-16-2010, 11:41 AM   #7
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I was on FB for awhile, but couldn't figure out how it worked. And the only messages on my site were from family to each other or the silly games they played. I don't want the whole world privy to my family's personal lives, but I couldn't figure out what to do about it. As far as a fan page, I never did figure that one out. So now I'm on inactive status. And you're right, it's not easy trying to dislodge yourself from FB.

Joyce
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Old 05-16-2010, 11:45 AM   #8
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I don't use any of the social sites, except live journal. I barely write anything there.

But things change...

It wasn't that long ago I was on a number of email lists via BITNET. BITNET is gone. i am on two email lists still, but we doing use listserv servers anymore.

Then I started using web forums. Those are still around.

Someday the technical problems in getting us into cyborg shells using built-in radios to communicate, like the movie Ghost in the Shell.

Someday that will become passe, and the next twist in human communications will show up.
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Old 05-17-2010, 07:33 AM   #9
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Old 05-19-2010, 01:32 PM   #10
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Old 05-19-2010, 01:39 PM   #11
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Facebook as a concept leaves me entirely cold. The idea of everyone being able to instantly access what I'm doing with my time fills me with a cold dread that's hard to describe.

Also, I have no intention of basing my own self worth off how many people have added me as a 'friend'. Especially if said person met me once in a bar six years ago, when I still had that unfortunate haircut...

When it comes to social networking, I intend to remain a firm luddite.
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Old 05-20-2010, 04:36 AM   #12
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I was on facebook for a couple of months, but the pics my daughter-in-law had on there, prompted me to suspend my account... I didn't know how to delete it, if that's even possible.
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Old 05-20-2010, 04:50 AM   #13
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Facebook has been fun for me, simply as a tool to re-connect with people I haven't seen or heard from in 20-40 years. I was the kid who left the neighborhood (cities, states, and countries) while everyone else stayed around. I never really went back to any of them. Now, seeing what old friends and relatives look like 40 years later, hearing about their lives, etc., etc., discovering/realizing that my old girlfriend isn't 23 any more, and now has 11 grandchildren... I find it delightful!!

I don't use Facebook to post what I'm doing every day. Not even every week. I don't play any of the games nor join any of the groups. While it's been wonderful reconnecting with all these people, we really have little in common, so aside from a "hey, I'm glad to hear everything has turned out well for you, nice looking kids, etc.," there isn't much more to be said. Facebook is a fun tool. We use tools. They shouldn't use us.

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Old 05-20-2010, 08:43 AM   #14
Steven Lake
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http://www.flowtown.com/blog/which-c...l?display=wide

Ya know, after reading this interesting little infographic, it appears that LinkedIn and Flickr are top dogs too, with LinkedIn being the biggest by leaps and bounds.

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Old 05-20-2010, 01:45 PM   #15
Jasmine Giacomo
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I use FB to promote my writing; that's all I mention on my status updates, and most of my friends are other authors. There are no pix of me there, just cover art. I'm not even "friends" with my husband. :P I do have a fan page as well. But FB is a tool to me, and as Stitchawl said, we should use tools, not the other way around. I've cleared out my info as much as possible, since it's not really relevant to my writing anyway.

Also, FWIW, I ran across this post on how to permanently delete your FB account a few days ago. In case anyone's actually going to go that route, here's apparently how it works.
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