a curious Yankee in Europe's court

blog about living in Europe, and Italy

And just a bit more about Facebook: 10 facts, 25 cartoons

Posted on the July 23rd, 2010

Following up on yesterday’s post about how Facebook is faring outside the U.S., I’m posting two links to things that  I saw today about the website .

One is from Mashable.com, an article about ten Facebook facts you may not know (“10 Fascinating Facebook Facts” by Amy-Mae Elliott, July 22, 2010).

The second is social media specialist Chad Richards’ pick for the top 25 cartoons about Facebook. Don’t know the criteria he used to select them, but they’re fun (Slideshare.net, 2009). See here.

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How’s Facebook doing outside the U.S.?

Posted on the July 22nd, 2010

With more than 136 million European users (as of April 2010),  Facebook’s popularity in Europe is evident, according to InsideFacebook.com (“Who’s Using Facebook Around the World?” June 8, 2010).

Total penetration for Europe now stands at a respectable 21.1% with a total audience of 136,549,060 Facebook users…

And this popularity echoes a worldwide trend. More than 70 percent of Facebook users are outside the U.S., according to the New York Times. That would be 70 percent of a total of 500 million users that Facebook reports it now has on board, according to a flood of news reports this week.

I would be willing to bet that most Facebook users — though aging, still predominantly ages 13 to 34 — don’t spend a lot of time thinking about the man, Mark Zuckerberg, who’s behind the website that stars in their daily lives. But others do, especially privacy advocates, and some critics and enemies Zuckerberg gained along the way to his astounding success.

Recently Zuckerberg answered some questions about himself and Facebook in an interview that was broadcast last night on ABC Television. Related story here (“Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Talks to Diane Sawyer as Website Gets 500-Millionth Member” by Ki Mae Heussner, July 21, 2010).

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To Facebook or not to Facebook

Posted on the January 12th, 2010

That is the question. Sort of.

Last month I read an enraged protest against the decision of Facebook’s CEO,  Mark Zuckerberg, to alter the site’s privacy settings (read about it here). I felt a little outraged myself, so I forwarded the article to friends and family, as a warning.

A few weeks later while visiting something or other in Rome, I bumped into a young Italian friend who is a communications designer and an activist in digital rights — he was one of the select that I had forwarded the enraged protest to. When I mentioned it, he shrugged and said, more or less, “the privacy issue is not something that’s very important to me.”

Hmmm. There’s that younger generation with that different values set that I’ve been hearing about.

Today I spotted this post by David Weinberger on his JoHo the blog about the Facebook conundrum. What he says and the reader comments are interesting and informative on the various issues involved.

But what to do? I’m just as perplexed as poor old Hamlet. (And I really like playing Brain Buddies!)

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