Facebook frenzy

If you’re in school, chances are you’ve heard of Facebook, the wildly-popular social networking site geared towards college/university students, that has also recently opened its doors to highschools and the workplace as well. Well, apparently big business has heard as well, and recent reports indicate that an offer of $750 million USD has been made for the company. Perhaps even more surprising is the fact that the offer was turned down – and a counter-offer of $2 billion put on the table. Not bad for a site that’s just over two years old and started by a guy who’s only 22.

Lest you gawk at that price tag, it’s rumoured that revenue is about $1 million a week, and up to 85% of US college students are signed up with the service – many of who regularly visit the site. Those are huge statistics, especially those concerning active users – the advertising market is definitely the key aspect of the site’s worth. Seeing as how it would be hard to get more penetration into the university/college sector, it sort of makes sense that Facebook has moved into the highschool and workplace sectors, hoping to achieve the same level of success that they’ve had previously.

While there are definitely some privacy concerns (potential employers have been known to use Facebook for informal background checks) that may make you think twice about sharing your drunken pictures, for the most part Facebook retains its success because of the feeling of being part of an exclusive network. Facebook did not create a new idea, but they took an existing one, added many new features and improvements, and most of all, applied it well to a certain demographic that was heavily in to Internet usage.

Facebook is also an example of metadata done right. It’s downright easy to find people with common interests and so forth, and creating groups is painless as well. Sort of makes metadata not boring at all.

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