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Entries in Facebook (7)


Teens Not Abandoning Facebook

There have been lots of media reports lately to the effect that teens are abandoning Facebook. This isn't true -- or, at least, is a sufficient enough misrepresentation of the source Pew Internet & American Life Project report that that organization felt compelled to issue a comment yesterday. 

Teens Haven’t Abandoned Facebook (Yet)

When we released our “Teens, Social Media and Privacy” report in May, one thread of news
coverage focused on teens’ “waning enthusiasm” for Facebook. This theme surfaced during
our focus group discussions with teens and stood in contrast to the excitement that was
associated with newer platforms like Instagram and Twitter. We were not the first to suggest that teens were starting to diversify their social media portfolio, and as such, our report became part of a larger meme that swiftly declared Facebook’s imminent demise.

But sampling other items at the social media buffet is not the same as swearing off salad
forever. As recent coverage has noted, our national survey data did not indicate a decrease
in the total number of Facebook-using teens, even though the focus group findings suggest
that teens’ relationship with Facebook is complicated and may be evolving.

While some of our teen focus group participants reported positive feelings about their use of Facebook, many spoke negatively about an increasing adult presence, the high stakes of managing self-presentation on the site, the burden of negative social interactions (“drama”), or feeling overwhelmed by friends who share too much. One teen told us that he started using Twitter because “everyone’s saying Facebook’s dead,” while another one explained that once you create a Twitter and an Instagram account, “then you'll just kind of forget about Facebook.”

However, few of the teens we spoke with had actually abandoned the biggest social media site altogether. As we noted in the report, “there were no indications in either the national survey or the focus groups of a mass exodus from Facebook.”

Comment continues at link. 



All prediction-for-the-future lists (e.g., see here) list "mobility" as a trend. This ten-slide slideshow published in Ziff Davis's eWeek captures many of the specifics. 

10 Mobile Technology Trends Sure to Impact Your Work, Life in 2013
By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2013-01-23
The mobile market has dramatically changed the IT industry. While deskbound PCs were once the most important products in the industry, smartphones, tablets and even lightweight notebooks are now on top. Desktops and heavier laptops have lost favor to highly mobile devices that generate excitement among consumers and even enterprise users. Given the importance of the mobile device market today, many buyers are likely wondering what they can expect from products built by Apple, Samsung, Nokia, HTC and others. The average consumer and enterprise user today are more mobile and want the latest and greatest features in products they bring on the road. And companies that capitalize on those needs will be far more likely to succeed than those who will not. But before customers can set out to buy certain products, they'll need to find out what sort of features they can expect in them this year. From big screens to 4G LTE wireless connectivity, mobile devices will offer several features to look forward to this year.



Relative Strengths and Weaknesses of Leading Social Networks

Via's Stephanie Mlot, a summary of and infographic about the leading social networks' -- Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Linkedin -- comparative growth, monthly visitors, and marketing ROI. 

"Infographic: Which Social Networks Make the Grade?

January 14, 2013 

Social media hit the roof in 2012, but how did each individual network compare to its rivals? 

Now that the dust has settled on the year that gave us Pinterest, a Facebook-Instagram acquisition, and even the news that MySpace is resurfacing, marketing software provider Pardot has graded Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

"With so many social networks to manage and likely more on the way, it is important to understand the growth rates, visitor counts, optimal uses, and strengths and weaknesses of the major social networks to determine where to exert your limited time and resources," Pardot said in a blog post. 

Based on each network's growth, monthly visitors, and estimated marketing return-on-investment (ROI), Twitter comes closest to earning straight A's. The micro-blogging site scored a B-minus in terms of growth, but took home an A-minus in monthly users and a solid A for ROI. Boasting 37 million monthly visitors, Twitter is second only to Facebook's massive following, but its 13 percent growth over the year beat Facebook's 4 percent drop. 

Summary continues and full infographic at link. 



Facebook and Its New "Poke" App

This piece by Brittany Darwell in Inside Facebook about the new Poke application actually serves to describe Facebook's constant aesthetic over the years. 

Too close for missiles, Facebook switches to guns and has some fun with Poke

Dec 23rd, 2012 

Facebook’s new Poke app seems in many ways like a departure for the company.

While most of Facebook’s products are meant to preserve memories and save interactions, communications in Poke disappear after a few seconds. Facebook emphasizes functionality over flair and tends to put a lot of structure to how and what users share, but Poke lets users doodle over their photos with different colors and send virtual pokes to their friends. Most of all, Poke is playful while the rest of Facebook is very much a utility. If you haven’t tried Poke, you can get a quick sense of this by listening to the app’s silly notification sound — reportedly recorded by Mark Zuckerberg himself.

Although some aspects of Poke might seem out of character for the Facebook most of us know now, it’s actually a fitting addition to the platform with roots in Facebook’s past.

Continues at link 




A few items caught my eye in the context of recent news from Facebook that its messaging app, Facebook Messenger, will be updated over time to allow anyone -- including people with no Facebook account -- to sign up for the service using just their name and mobile number, and send messages via data plans, avoiding (SMS) text messaging and its cost.

This further accelerates the nibbling away at text messaging by messaging within Facebook; by Twitter, Foursquare, etc.; and Apples's and BlackBerry's internal systems. 

Myself, I have seen friends and colleagues shift from email and text to messaging -- Facebook Messenger in particular.

"SMS Turns 20, Marches Towards Irrelevance," by Dan Rowinski via readwrite mobile

Smartphones Offer Texting Alternatives

The harbinger of the fall of the text is the smartphone. The following notion cannot be overstated: Smartphones are the equivalent of powerful computers that go wherever we do. As such, almost anything that can be done on a computer can now be done on a smartphone or a tablet. That means popular chat and instant messaging services that were once the domain of the PC are now available to anybody with a smartphone and a data connection.

Almost all of the major smartphone operating systems now have their own proprietary messaging services. For Android, that means Google Talk (also referred to as GChat, but Google does not actually call it that). For Apple’s iOS that means iMessage. Microsoft has its Windows Live Messenger. Research In Motion has BlackBerry Messenger (BBM). These services are used by hundreds of millions of people across the globe. Several of these services integrate texting into a unified messaging system, such as the message service in Windows Phone 8 as well as iMessage. 

Outside of platform-specific messaging systems, services like Skype or Facebook Messenger can work across any mobile device that has the app installed. In addition, there are many different enterprise-grade communication services from the likes of Citrix, Cisco and Fuze (among many others). Many of these also offer traditional unified communications (UC) features like voice and video calling, tele-presence and chat-based messaging.

Then there are cross-platform apps that can be used by any smartphone. One of the biggest is called WhatsApp, a popular service that offers cross-platform messaging on any device that has a data plan (see WhatsApp Denies Facebook Deal Rumor - But It Still Makes Sense). Pinger is a similar cross-messaging service. There are also apps that mimic old push-to-talk (PTT) walkie-talkie like services, such as Voxer, an app that allows you to leave a text or voice message to another user. 

The fact of the matter is that traditional phone services like the call or the text are beginning to be pushed to the wayside as telephones become more like computers. That does not necessarily mean that texting is doomed, but it decreases its relevance and may eventually push it to the margin of mobile communications.

Facebook’s Big Messenger Play

On Tuesday, Facebook announced an interesting move that could end up being a significant blow to the future of texting. The social network released a new Messenger app for Android that allows people to use Facebook’s communication service without a Facebook account. All you need to do is download the Facebook Messenger app on Android, enter your phone number, and begin texting all of your mobile contacts. The new Messenger for Android will be able to communicate with any of your contacts, start group chats and share pictures. Eventually, Facebook Messenger will come to feature (non-smart) phones as well.

"Text Messages May Be In Decline, But They Are Not Going To Die, And Here's Why," by Nick Statt via readwrite mobile

As the 20th anniversary of the text message came and passed last week, many in the tech and mobile business world (including Dan Rowinski of ReadWrite) couldn’t help but declare the death of SMS, claiming that text messaging is finally over the hill and on a one-way path to irrelevance. This was after mobile analyst Chetan Sharma announced that the average number of monthly texts in the U.S. fell for the first time, by 3%.
While analysts and market watchers have good reason to think that the 160-character communication method won’t be seeing a historic comeback given the numerous free options available, the most recent death knells completely ignore how pervasive the traditional text message is in our communication culture and why that guarantees its survival right alongside email and the phone call.
They also ignore the fact that in the face of a decline in traditional text messaging, U.S. carriers will likely begin to buckle over keeping high rate plans, giving up their once-astronomical text profits for a chance to keep the market from slipping away completely.

"Workers Can't (or Won't) Escape From Their eMail," by Dennis McCafferty via Baseline.

Do you sometimes feel as if you're perpetually buried inside your inbox? Join the club. Despite the massive popularity of social media, we spend a staggering amount of hours sorting, reading and sending email, according to a recent survey from Mimecast. eMail isn't simply a person-to-person communications tool. It's also handy as a search engine and file-storage option, findings show. Sometimes, it's a viable alternative to in-person "face time" at the office, as four of 10 information professionals say they regularly send and receive work-related emails outside of normal hours, and one-quarter admit that they've sent emails late in the evening purely to "show commitment" to the job. "While email is not perfect, it seems that information workers are reluctant to adopt other social tools if it means they have to leave their inbox behind," says Peter Bauer, CEO and co-founder of Mimecast, a supplier of cloud-based email solutions. "Therefore, rather than trying to entice users away from email and on to other platforms, IT teams should introduce new, inbox-friendly collaboration tools and make the data stored within the archive more accessible." An estimated 2,500 information workers in the United States, United Kingdom and South Africa took part in the research.

Eleven slides with information such as 

  • Employees spend an average of 888 hours/year on email.
  • Nearly 90% rely on email to search for documents or information in their inbox. 
  • A third of business users expects email and social media to converge within five years. 
  • Three-quarters of workers prefer email to social media for sharing information. 


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