Facebook is “Dead and Buried” to Teens, Shows Study

    December 29, 2013
    Sean Patterson
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With decade-old MySpace now considered part of the ancient history of the internet, it’s little wonder that questions are now forming over whether Facebook has long-term staying power.

As the internet (and especially mobile platforms) have grown, Facebook has become less exciting and new, particularly to teens. A survey this fall found that Twitter has overtaken Facebook in popularity among teens. Last month questions also arose following Facebook’s third-quarter earnings call, in which it was revealed that daily Facebook use among teens may be dropping. Though Facebook later downplayed the significance of that revelation, investors are still worrying that other new social media tools such as messaging apps could drive down Facebook engagement (and ad revenue).

A new report this month from Daniel Miller, professor of material culture at University College London, is now showing yet again that teens may be entirely done with Facebook.

Miller, who is part of the EU’s Global Social Media Impact Study, has reported that 16- to18-year-olds in the UK are “embarrassed even to be associated” with Facebook. Miller went as far as to label Facebook “dead and buried” among that demographic.

The problem, it seems, is that Facebook is now too mainstream, to inclusive. Along with Facebook’s growth came an influx of parents, grandparents, and teachers – the very people that teens were using Facebook to circumvent at the site’s outset. Miller’s report shows that teens are now using Facebook out of an obligation to stay in touch with family, rather than to keep up with friends.

Instead of Facebook, says Miller, teens are now turning to more direct forms of social interaction. The aforementioned Twitter is still popular among the younger demographic, as is the Facebook-owned Instagram. In addition, messaging apps such as WhatsApp and SnapChat, which gained significant popularity during 2013.

Though Facebook no longer appears to be the cool place for teens to hang out online, the company can still take solace in the fact that its massive userbase means it will be relevant for years to come. The only concerns now for Facebook should be whether parents will gradually follow in their teens’ footsteps away from the site or whether those even younger than teens will bypass Facebook altogether in favor of the new and the popular.

  • Allison

    Yes. SnapChat and Ravetree are much better. They offer privacy, and they don’t have ads.

    • Sophie

      “They offer privacy” …for now.
      “…and they don’t have ads” …yet.

    • jeff

      In what way does Snapchat offer privacy?

  • http://www.seoservices.net.nz/growing-facebook-likes/ Perry Bernard

    Hi Sean,
    “whether those even younger than teens will bypass Facebook altogether in favor of the new and the popular.”
    – I’m sure that’s going to be the case. We have to be realistic here and see that facebook (and any other social media platform) will cycle out of popularity some day. Being able to adapt to the new and take up the challenge of learning to use whatever new platform will arise to our advantage will always be our aim.
    Allison: wherever there are people gathering in numbers, there will be ads. If you are hanging out in a place that doesn’t directly charge you for hanging out there, trust me, ads will come.

  • http://www.patelsportscity.net.in/ sharma

    SnapChat and Ravetree are much better. They offer privacy, and they don’t have ads.
    thanks for the post…!!!

  • Tim

    Maybe it can finally go back to the days when 16-18 year olds weren’t old enough to sign up for it.

  • http://myspace.websites-hosting-companies-cheap.com/ MySpOw

    Teenagers will love to communicate by using the wire, and in MySpOnW the tool allows users to say what they think and provides privacy.
    The Wire is a great choice for social networking because you can post messages longer that 140 and up to 167 characters, Twitter has allowance only 140-character limit.

  • http://saw.com saw

    the only reason fb got popular in the first place was bc you had to have an @edu email address, so it was sort of “exclusive.” now my grandma is on there, which is cool to talk to my grandma on but i cant post stupid and funny shit like i used to bc it offends or pisses somebody off and its incredibly annoying bc thats one of the things the internet is good for.

  • http://www.latestinworld.com abhishek choudhary ar

    fb is better but they have to improve look and features for staying in top

  • betweenthelakes

    Just yesterday, a twelve year old pointed out to me that “Nobody uses Instagram anymore. It’s dead.”

    Remember where you heard this first!

  • http://easyonlineclassifieds.com/ John Hogan

    Facebook=NSA and homeland security ALL OVER IT. Kids know that. Think about the why with that in mind.

  • John

    the other day my oblivious-to-her-surroundings teenage daughter was busy tapping away on her iphone when she suddenly blurted out “OMG Travis is such a dork!”

    Being curious, I asked why she called Travis a dork.

    Her response? “Because he IM’d me on Facebook! Only dorks go on Facebook…I’ve got to tweet this!”


  • http://dominogavin.blogspot.com Gavin Bollard

    Glad to have the very young off Facebook. Nobody wants to read their drunken and immature updates. They belong on networks that won’t be looked at by prospective employers and parents.

    Facebook is now a mature product with a lot of sensible legal restrictions. This sensationalistic reporting is the same as when they said that “Rock and Roll” was DEAD in the 1980s because my generation wasn’t listening to Elvis.

    As for advertising. I’m using Chrome with NotScript and Adblock. I haven’t seen a facebook advert in ages.

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