24 May 2007

Welcome to the World of Social Network Churn

Being an old fogey, I don't care much about all these new-fangled social networks (even LinkedIn seems overly, well, chummy for my tastes). But they're undeniably important, especially for those young people. However, I think we are about to enter a new phase for social networks that is going to leave a lot of people - investors in particular - feeling queasy.

Looking past the vertiginous growth rates mentioned here, the real killer is at the end:

Bebo’s traffic share rose threefold in the year to April while MySpace grew around two and a half times, Hitwise found, with the former poised to overtake MySpace this month, having ranked number one for the last three weeks. But it’s Facebook that now seems to be the hottest property. Anecdotally, many of my friends who had only just discovered MySpace have now upped and left for the more structured communication confines of Facebook, where they are better able to reconnect with old classmates and colleagues.

I predict that this fickleness will be a defining feature of a world that is predicated on being a memeber of what's hot, and not being a member of what's not.

Welcome to the world of social network churn.

No comments: