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Should Facebook be worried from TikTok?

29.07.2022 04:00 AM
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Should Facebook be worried from TikTok?
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When Blake Chandleewas asked if he was concerned about competition from existing social-media networks like Facebook, he dismissed the idea by answering: ​“Facebook is a social platform. They’ve built all their algorithms based on the social graph.” “We are an entertainment platform. The difference is significant.”

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Should Facebook be worried from TikTok?

 When Blake Chandleewas asked if he was concerned about competition from existing social-media networks like Facebook, he dismissed the idea by answering: “Facebook is a social platform. They’ve built all their algorithms based on the social graph.” “We are an entertainment platform. The difference is significant.”

To understand Facebook’s current danger, it helps to better understand its original success. In the spring of 2004, when my college friends signed up for TheFacebook.com, as it was then called, they did so because other people they knew were signing up as well. (One of the platform’s early killer features was the ability to check the “relationship status” of classmates.) By the end of 2006, the year in which Facebook opened to the general public, the service had already gathered twelve million active users. At that point, network-effect advantages made it hard for a competitor to emerge; two years later, when Facebook hit a hundred million active users, competition became all but impossible. Why would you join a new network dedicated to connection with people you know if everyone you knew was already on Facebook?

The next major evolution of this model of leveraging a social graph to create engagement was sparked by Twitter. Though it was launched in 2006, this short-messaging service didn’t achieve broader notice until 2009. This was the year in which Ashton Kutcher discussed Twitter on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” It was also the year in which the news leaked that a U.S. State Department official e-mailed the company, urging it to delay planned server maintenance so as not to interfere with planned pro-democracy protests in Iran. For Twitter, however, arguably the most important event of 2009 was not these publicity bonanzas but the introduction of the retweet button. This tweak, originally intended to simplify the common practice of manually cutting and pasting the text of interesting tweets, ended up transforming Twitter. By eliminating the friction required to forward a message to all of your followers, the retweet button created a fierce viral dynamic in which a single tweet could be amplified to a large audience in a short period of time, its readership expanding exponentially through the power-law topology of the Twitter network. This turned out to be a phenomenally effective method for surfacing the most engaging content floating around the platform at any given moment. This potential for sudden mass exposure also began to draw more influential individuals to the platform, further increasing the value of its content.

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