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Facebook, MySpace and Bebo have a hiccup

Maybe all the talk of Facebook’s privacy policies being a concern
are finally having an impact on people networking online as Facebook
had it’s first drop in usage in January.  According to Nielsen’s
ratings, the number of unique visitors in Britain fell from 8.9 million
people in December 2007 to 8.5 million in January 2008. 

The
same was true in Europe also, with unique French users down 200,000
people to 1.87 million in January, and 23,000 Spanish users
disappearing in January leaving 659,000 to kiss, date, hug and poke
each other.

British Bebo and MySpace users are also tailing
off, with Bebo peaking in July 2007 with 4.6 million unique users
dropping to 4.1 million today, whilst MySpace peaked at 6.8 million
users in April 2007, dropping to 5 million today.

Nevertheless,
the millions of users are still worth noting, and social networking
will not go away.   After all, this is a global phenomena with Facebook
registrations in the USA still rising, and also with my friends in Asia
telling me just this week about the success of Cyworld and Mixi in
South Korea and Japan respectively.

Like Facebook, MySpace and
Bebo, these are social networks for Asia that have also enjoyed similar
success.  For example, 20 million Koreans had signed up with Cyworld
last year which, when you consider the total population of South Korea
is 47 million, is amazing.  90% of South Koreans in their 20s have
their own page on Cyworld.

Mixi in Japan has had more modest
growth because you can only join if you are invited by another Mixie
user.  Even so, with 10 million users, they’re not doing bad.

Just goes to show that the internet – as a relationship service – cannot
be ignored and banks that want relationships, which they claim is the
core of their business offer to their customer, still need to get a
grip on this phenomena.

About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, the Finanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here…

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