Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and boredom

"Someone once told me that Facebook (FB) would be a great service if you un-friended 90% of your friends," writes Tech.pinions' Ben Bajarin, highlighting what he views as a core problem with the social networking colossus.

While Facebook users may initially find "the joy of discovery and connecting" with people they know 'a very sticky experience," the service eventually "becomes more about maintaining than connecting," and feeds filled with far more "noise" than interesting material. Meanwhile, limiting one's friends list to close/interesting contacts would drastically limit the amount of fresh material showing up.

Twitter (TWTR), as Bajarin notes, has a very different problem. New users can have a much harder time finding contacts who are active users (that might be contributing to Twitter's heavy churn). But those who hang around often find plenty of compelling material delivered by non-contacts.

Moreover, while Facebook is encroaching on Twitter's turf by encouraging more posting of public material - outside of celebrities and businesses, success has been moderate thus far - Twitter is trying to appeal to Facebook users by allowing images, videos, and cards to appear within timelines.

Facebook's problem is of particular relevance following a Q3 in which North American MAUs rose by only 1M Q/Q, and U.S. teen DAUs declined; the latter revelation follows surveys and anecdotal reports pointing to declining popularity with U.S. teens, who have acted as trendsetters for many Web services (including Facebook, back in its college-only days). North America accounted for 48% of Facebook's Q3 revenue.

But while U.S. teens may be cutting down on their Facebook use, they're dialing up their Instagram use just as the mobile photo-sharing platform begins showing feed ads. An online ad exec: "If you factor in Instagram, you would find that Facebook as a company is actually increasing engagement with teens."

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Comments (8)
  • danbre1
    , contributor
    Comments (33) | Send Message
    Facebook should still be considered a growth company as it continues to figure out how to best monetize Instagram and video ads. Stay long.
    3 Nov 2013, 08:03 PM Reply Like
  • froggshares
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
    Love FB it's got lots of positives for growth
    3 Nov 2013, 09:02 PM Reply Like
  • leebailey85
    , contributor
    Comments (85) | Send Message
    FB should hit $70 by Christmas. Fundamentals and opportunities are simply too strong. Every hedge fund will want a piece of the FB action, just like AAPL back in the day. Plus imminent inclusion in the S&P 500 should help a lot
    3 Nov 2013, 09:25 PM Reply Like
  • DavidGomez
    , contributor
    Comments (33) | Send Message
    FB just recently opened up FB to young teens. Before it was always kept closed and they weren't free to add people as friends and use the system as adults. With this new freedom then teens will likely start increasing their use. This change was made just last week with FB. Furthermore, Instagram is owned by FB so I really don't see what all the drama is around this other than to waste bandwidth.
    3 Nov 2013, 09:41 PM Reply Like
  • eFLOP
    , contributor
    Comments (50) | Send Message
    FB is a great growth stock..........an easy one to make huge profit off of short and long term
    4 Nov 2013, 01:42 AM Reply Like
  • big bad barry
    , contributor
    Comments (142) | Send Message
    FBI is a passing fad and will go the way as the dodo bird did ....extinction
    Reason, you ask?
    Number one is sheer boredom and those very annoying ads that seem to get in ones way on the full website !!! Reason number two is I find UTUBE more engaging and far more informative than any Facebook chatter among people who you may or may not see ever again
    4 Nov 2013, 01:46 AM Reply Like
  • Scoptions
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    FB will continue to blow them away for years to come with good fundamentals, good management, with main focus on product quality. Lets not forget that Mark Z is no idiot and being mentored by Bill Gates.
    If you laid all the stock analysts in the world end to end they wouldn't reach a conclusion :)
    Im long FB
    4 Nov 2013, 05:51 AM Reply Like
  • alain rabier
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
    I guess we all long guys bet on momentum, which seems to be good.
    Personnally, I saw the teen crack as an option to get a ticket in the FB ferry.
    My strategy is to use good fondamentals until Q4.
    My second thoughts? Insane PER and incipient ad earnings.
    FB is not Google.
    4 Nov 2013, 07:19 AM Reply Like
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