Saturday, 9 January 2010
Facebook is one of those websites that is slowly taking over the whole world. It's doing what Google did to search engines (beating down anyone else who dared) with it's massive market share. What software can this bulging veiny beast of a social networking site take down next?
Facebook started out as a site for students to use to keep up with each other for people who went to Harvard. Then more universities started using it, and now the entire world uses it. Old or young, big or small, Sony or Microsoft, no matter your preference, the whole world is now using this website for almost all of their online social interactions, but why? What has this site got to offer that no other site does, and how is it slowly demolishing the rest of the social software out there?
Facebook and other social networking sites go together like polar bears and global warming. When I was a boy, or a younger boy, everyone used to use MSN. We used it because it was simple. You add your friend's email address, and whenever they are online you can send them a message instantly. You could even show what music you were listening to. In my circle of friends a lot of people have now stopped using MSN because of Facebook's chat options. Still Facebook Chat is a long way from the latest Live Messenger. You can't use webcams, so now how are you meant to look at your hot friends? Also without the ability to use a mic, you can't even talk to your mediocre friends like you can on other software. The reason more people now use Facebook chat is because of the convenience. Opening one program to do all your social activities is far more easier than opening up a few programs, for the majority of people.
I love Skype. Everyone should get Skype. Humans were made to talk to each other face to face, not type. I always feel like I'm cheating the phone companies when I can talk to someone for free on my computer. Facebook isn't converting Skype users because it isn't offering what Skype is. Skype has many other features such as you can call people on their actual phones by buying credit. If you have an iPhone Skype will only work when you are on a wifi signal to stop everyone calling each other for free. It is only a matter of time until Facebook manages to catch up with this trend, since people are already uploading their mobile numbers to Facebook.
This situation reminds me of a situation last decade when I got my first iPod. Soon, I thought, they will make the iPod camera, then the iPod video camera, then the iPod phone. These big companies behaviour are usually quite predictable but the iPhone is one huge step forward which I don't think anyone could have predicted the millions of ways you can use it. Will Facebook have the same revolutionary step forward or simply go along the boring path it's expected to take?
Myspace used to contend with Facebook. Never being a real Myspace user I can't exactly say how and in what ways Myspace is different, but from word of mouth and seeing people change over, I can only assume that Facebook is far superior. I still see many bands though using Myspace so maybe it isn't an epic fail in comparison.
Blogging surprisingly does not seem to appear on Facebook. In a way updating your status Twitter style could be seen as a kind of blogging but it isn't proper blogging, like this page. Then again to me proper blogging is someone writing something about this long so maybe I'm just old fashioned that way.
Twitter is the worst idea since mankind existed and I'm only going to use 140 characters it allows me to review it. I seem to have already used them up. You can only blame yourself Twitter you Twit.
Still at the top of my social networking sites is Omegle. Who wants to talk to friends and people they acutally know. That's boring, people want to talk to random people and see what they have to say. You can go on a dating site where people set up profiles to meet people but Omegle has such an emphasis on not trusting anyone it makes it far more interesting. Also you can choose what information you tell people and not have to edit your profile so your parents don't know what your really doing with your time.
With Facebook already dominating the picture side of social networking it is now only a matter of time before it takes over more things like MSN. Their chat system does appear more reliable than it did when it first started, and time will only tell whether they choose to add in a phone feature, a webcam chat feature and maybe even a talk to a random person feature. I will long await the day when Facebook will do everything for me. However things like Facebook have a habit of coming and going. Soon it may die out like our good friend Twitter is slowly having to admit failure as its users slowly drift out on to other services like Farmville, which currently has more users. The day Twitter has its last Tweet will be the happiest day of my life.