Survivor: social network edition

We live in an age where Facebook is considered part of a daily routine by many. Boasting membership from young teens to senior citizens, Facebook caters to the entire online demographic. The growth of this social network has surpassed those who have come before it, like MySpace. However, will Facebook continue to push ahead of its competitors, or is it nearing the dreaded social network plateau?

According to an infographic by Century Link Quote, the average life of an online empire is about 11 years. Facebook has been around for approximately eight years, surpassing MySpace’s seven years. MySpace picked up speed for about four years until Facebook overtook it with its total number of users; it went downhill from there.

Looking at Facebook’s statistics, it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere in the near future. Its user number has increased by almost 200 million members from 2011 to 2012 alone. Facebook knows it continues to grow in popularity, too; which is why it is constantly adding new features to boost its likability and membership stats.  “Timeline” was launched during September 2011, and it is rumored that Facebook will soon launch a “want” option in which users will be given the opportunity to create a wish list for things that they find and like, potentially turning the site into an e-commerce front. This could be a tremendous opportunity for many businesses and may just contribute to the longevity of Facebook’s lifetime.

However, it seems that certain amenities of Facebook have been taken over by newer and shinier social assets. The number of status updates have dwindled with Twitter‘s rising popularity. The success of Instagram has shown less and less “mobile uploads” on Facebook’s homepage. Though Facebook purchased Instagram in April, they continue to keep it as a separate asset, but give users the opportunity to post their image to both Facebook and Twitter with the Instagram link. Facebook may have seen Instagram as a potential threat and wisely purchased it before it surpassed Facebook in popularity.

As a whole, it seems that Facebook is less of a social media tool and more of an important asset for both businesses and individual people. Only time will tell if Facebook will be around for years to come or fade out before the next generation can experience it.

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