Zuckerbergs Law of Sharing - beautifully flawed
When Mark Zuckerberg unveiled his new take on Facebook's engagement and growth, one could be forgiven for thinking he had just copied Moore's law. According the law the amount of content that people share online will double every 12 months. So far this trend has been shown by the uptake of Facebook, and Zuckerberg used it to underline the growth prospects for his company.
However the law makes has a fatal flaw in its thinking, and that is that unlike Moore's Law it is dependant on a single company and mindset. You see while Facebook's growth has been impressive so far, the company is stumbling, as it tries to further engage with new users. Simply its uptake has been modified by the introduction of new sharing methods and media, for example photos, statuses, video, location. The problem is that there is a very finite level of this media available, and it is quickly running out of it.
Part of this is as a result of the privacy concerns that continue to plague the company. Only last month it emerged that Facebook was tracking users after they logged out from the site, they claimed it was a bug, but few believed them.
For all its effort the company has yet to make any real progress in understanding or addressing the concerns of its user base, instead it seems intent on constantly resetting a users privacy preferences and introducing ever more confusing privacy controls. This follows a number of embarrasing episodes, including Zuckerberg's proposal for Beacon, in which he was less than honest with customers and users.
While there is little doubt that Facebook's membership will continue to grow for a few years to come, the lesson that can be learnt from MySpace, is that sooner or later something will come along, or something will happen that will put a dent in all those lovely spreadsheets.
For the moment Zuckerberg's Law of Sharing is little more than a strap line intended to plaster over the ever first cracks in Facebook's continued mode of operation.