Facebook is for old people. When the public hangs that label on a social network, it is a death sentence that is difficult to commute. The decline of Mark Zuckerberg’s company is more than evident, precipitating its value by several hundred billion dollars and putting nearly 11,000 people out on the street. As a definitive thrust, the commitment to the metaverse does not end up capturing the interest of investors or users. Is Facebook the new MySpace?
Younger readers and readers are likely to either not know what it is MySpace Or just have a vague idea. This social network pioneered what was called Web 2.0 –as Meta now wants to be Web 3.0- and was the star of one of the first episodes of hyper-growth of users. However, that platform failed to maintain that competitive advantage derived from its pioneering status and, although he has not died definitively, he has been dying for years.
MySpace was born in 2003 as a platform on which music was basically consumed and in barely two years it was already Acquired by News Corp -owned by tycoon Rupert Murdoch- for $530 million; operation that was not exempt from critical voices that slipped the possibility of a bubble. Despite this latent skepticism, the truth is that MySpace had managed to capture the attention of the youngest, with more than 16 million monthly users who spent hours browsing its showcase of ads, blogs, chats, video games and, especially, music. .
Groups like the Black Eyed Peas, REM or Nine Inch Nails released their albums on this platform, which featured advertisers like Procter & Gamble and Sony Pictures. Such was the popularity of MySpace that then, when the platforms of streaming they had no draft, NBC came to broadcast the sitcom The office on MySpace before on TV.
This phenomenon is very reminiscent of that recently experienced by other networks such as TikTok. History does not repeat itself, but it rhymes, both in the rises and in the falls. MySpace would end up being devoured by the rest of the social networks -Zuckerberg would begin his adventure in 2004-, as in a certain way is happening to Facebook.
If we review what happened with MySpace, we see that already in 2011 and despite the fact that it continued with the unconditional support of artists like Arctic Monkeys and Lily Allen, the decline was evident. In 2010 it lost 50 million users and held the record for, in just one month (February 2011), having seen 10 million users flee at once. It is no longer just that Facebook was more attractive but also, for artists, YouTube was emerging as a better option. Layoffs also camewith more than 500 people running out of work… and a change of focus, a complete redesign and even a logo change. Does it ring a bell? Do you see parallels with Facebook?
Zuckerberg’s company continues to accumulate economic sanctions imposed by regulators, generates mistrust and leads manipulation scandals. The survival of the social network has some inertia on the part of its users who, indeed, can no longer be described as young. That demographic segment is found on other networks, not on Facebook, which has ended up causing that, even in the US, there is a setback in the number of users, with the implications that this has for advertisers and their business model.
Facebook has stopped innovating for too long, limiting itself to plagiarizing features from other social networks or instant messaging applications. The user experience that matters so much to this type of company has stagnated, it is not attractive and, to make matters worse, one finds fewer and fewer people you want to run into and more with whom you would prefer not to see even in painting.
So yes, everything indicates that Facebook is the new MySpace. It’s not all going to be bad news.
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Is Facebook the new MySpace?