Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Facebook Kicking off 20,000 Users a Day

http://www.cnn.com/2011/TECH/social.media/03/23/facebook.underage.users/index.html?iref=NS1

Facebook is booting over 20,000 underage users a day. To be on Facebook you must be at least 13 years old, and over half of the 12 year olds out there are using a social networking site. If Facebook is losing only a tiny fraction of their 600 million users, then what is happening to the company from this loss and why are they booting off users?
Facebook treats every user on their site like an adult, they give them their own choices as to what they want the public to see or not to see. If something explicit happens to a child on Facebook or from Facebook, then Facebook could probably get sued. 13 year olds don't make the brightest choices, but they have a little bit more of a grip on what to post online than a 10 year old does. I think Facebook is trying to prevent something bad from happening to a younger kid.
Another thought that crossed my mind was that 20,000 people less a day will be seeing the advertisements on Facebook and that might effect other companies besides Facebook. Will other companies lose potential money from this?
As age increases, it is shown that more people are involved with a social networking site. With all the younger kids getting kicked off Facebook will that make it more or less popular when they are of age? I would expect that it would make some kids want to be on Facebook more since they would have to wait to get on it, but I can also imagine kids being against it since they weren't originally allowed on or they were kicked off. Another possibility is that maybe the younger generations are finding other social networking sites to be on. If this is so, then Facebook will have a competitor because those kids might not want to switch sites if all their friends are using a different site other than Facebook.
I think Facebook is definitely number one when it comes to social networking sites, but to the younger generations it might not be. They might think something else is the 'cool thing'.

11 comments:

Smith said...

You have a great observation about 20,000 people less will not be viewing the advertisements. I would like to see you expound on this idea.

Cara said...

I think Facebook is not just a fad in today's world. It is something that everyone loves and gets new members everyday. There will be millions of people on Facebook constantly for a very long time. The advertisements themselves are individual Facebooks as well, so I think that they will not be impacted because kids under the age of 13 will be off of Facebook. Those advertisements and businesses with Facebooks are more directly for kids well over the age of 13. I like your take on want and demand for this product. It truly does rule most of our lives today.

Zach said...

I personally feel like the whole Facebook site has gotten out of hand with the amount of underage users and I like this move by Facebook. Facebook is basically like a PG-13 movie so kicking off users below the 13 years of age mark is fine to me. As a popularity issue I don't see this taking a hit to Facebook, I remember when Facebook was limited to college students and you had to have a real college email to sign up. It didn't affect my attraction to it and at this point nothing can stop the facebook addiction. As of now the world is hooked on Facebook like a high potent drug addiction.

Elizabeth said...

I do not think this will increase competition for Facebook as many of the other social networking sites that used to be popular had similar rules, even if they weren't strictly enforced. If another site is created for people around the age of 13 and younger, it will only take away the users that weren't allowed on Facebook. An older student isn't going to want to join a site targeted at pre-teens and the users of this said site will gladly rejoin Facebook to be included in the 'adult' world. Although this sounds like it make get rid of many users, I'm unsure how strictly Facebook will be able to enforce this.

Curt said...

I think Fsvebook is going to be fine. This probably won't effect them very much at all. They are so dominant in the social networking world that kicking these younger kids off shouldn't be a problem, and I'm sure they will join when they are 13. Lindsay is definitely right that Facrbook could be sued if these kids get into trouble on Facebook.

Ben Harden said...

Perhaps the Facebook developers would benefit by making a Facebook or similar Social Network that caters to a younger audience. A more game-based Social Network that doesn't allow sharing of personal information, yet has the same momentum as the 13+ Facebook model. Children under 13 that sign up could be re-directed to this social network. Maybe it defeats the purpose of Facebook to have a site like that, but children certainly won't stop signing up for the site as long as it is popular.

Shahrukh Lalani said...

I think this is a smart move by Facebook for a few reasons. One, like it stated in the blog, children will be more hyped up about finally being able to obtain a facebook profile when they are thirteen years old because they were previously restricted to do so. I would personally be excited to get a facebook if every single teenager I knew had one. By making this step, Facebook is also doing their part to prevent children from viewing corrupt material on the web. It is known for having thousands of advertisements; some of which are not appropriate for children to be viewing. Although Facebook is losing thousands of users, they are smart for doing this. The move actually stimulates the economy even more by providing more room for competition. Social networks for kids may be created some time soon and would compete with Facebook for advertisers and applications (games, surveys, etc.). With more room competition out there interesting ideas could come out and influence the choices people make when choosing their social networks.

Alison said...

Maybe those who were booted off of Facebook will move to Myspace. I know that's the site we all used when we were about twelve, so they seem to be less strict about their policy (if they have one). I'm sure when they're of age they'll switch back to Facebook since that's what is "cool" right now, but Myspace could regain some temporary popularity.

sarah said...

I agreee with Alison, I've recently heard that Myspace updated their website so it would attract younger users and possibly some of the Facebook crowd. Facebook may be helping Myspace out by booting kids under 13 off Facebook. Like Alison said, we all had a Myspace before Facebook because then it was only offered to college students. Now the kids under 13 have to wait until they are of age, just like we waited while having a Myspace.

George Rodriguez said...

I think facebook is making a good decision on not allowing kids under the age of thirteen to join the networking site of facebook. For one reason, like the article said, it will make kids more excited as they get older to know they will be able to have one and interact with all of their friends. It will be the “new” thing for thirteen year olds to do. A second reason facebook is smart for not allowing younger kids is because they could be subject to harm if they choose to become friends with someone they don’t know but aren’t smart enough to know the wrong it that yet. Younger kids of course don’t know right from wrong exactly on facebook. They could think everyone wants to be their friend and accept anyone that requests them. But, personally it’s a good idea for the safety of the community and children.

Payne said...

I honestly do not believe that Facebook is giving the young users the boot because of safety reasons. I think that Facebook is getting too large. The money it is costing to run the servers and house the thousands of employees is astronomical. By eliminating the youth, Facebook receives good publicity because its looking out for its customers while lowering its operating cost.