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"facebook is dead" experiment results

Last Sunday I decided to do an experiment by not posting to Facebook for an entire week to see if anyone would notice for a whole week. The results are in, and here's what happened.

What I was looking for however is to see if anyone would actually notice that I wasn't posting there. Nobody did, and I know exactly why. It's because nobody cares about Facebook anymore.

As for why people don't care about Facebook, it's basically for two reasons. First, people are bored with it, and second is what I call the social noise factor.

Social noise

With anything social that catches popularity on the internet, it becomes a thing (as in "the thing to do", as in trendy), that thing inevitably becomes so popular that everyone from your brother to your sister to your mother to your employer gets on the thing, the thing then falls out of favor with the masses, boredom sets in, and... stick a fork in it, it's done. Facebook is well known to be past-peak and its popularity is waning no matter what anyone tells you.

Noise factor

Facebook's social noise factor is comprised of two parts.

The first part is the stuff your friends and fan pages post on Facebook, most of which you couldn't care less about and consider it crap. Anything you consider crap on Facebook is social noise.

The second part is how the social network itself handles the noise. Facebook's way of doing it was with Timeline and EdgeRank. Both are used in concert with each other, and both effectively make the Facebook experience miserable compared to how it was before those two things went into effect.

Timeline and EdgeRank, simply put, put those who pay at the top of the heap, and bury everyone else. In other words, Facebook is the definition of "pay to play".

The end result of a maneuver like this is that Facebook users are inundated with swaths of useless crap from other Facebookers they don't care about whatsoever. This leads to frustration, then boredom, then... they leave.

Conversely, Twitter's way of handing social noise was completely different and altogether much better. Twitter as far as I know has no ranking system. What they do have are "promoted tweets", and that's fine, but the point is that you don't have to rely on that just to get noticed, meaning you don't have to do the whole pay-to-play crapola. Instead of pay-to-play, you have tools to weed out the noise, like the lists feature. And because Twitter is so heavily text-based, people can consume the content there a whole lot easier.

Am I saying Twitter is better than Facebook?

Yes. The key to good Twittering is just to be active in the system, as in to be conversational. Use hashtags, reply to other's tweets, "retweet" a few tweets here and there, etc. Not hard to do.

On Twitter, you don't have to use your real name if you don't want to, you don't have to 'follow' anyone to read what they post, and it's easy to filter out social noise when you encounter it.

Is Twitter better for artists and bands?

Again, that's a yes because with Twitter you're just much more accessible. And those who leave/abandon FB go straight to Twitter because it's there, it's easy and it's fun.

And fun things are cool. 🙂

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