Make Marketing History

The views of a marketing deviant.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

The Real Facebook Lesson.

There is a big "revolt" going on at the Facebook student social network because new features that were notably lauded by Web 2.0 champions are hated by a large number of users as, irony of ironies, they make the network more socially inclusive.

This has raised much debate about how ineptly the management have acted and allowed bloggers to pontificate on how to deal with communities. Admittedly the headline of the response was very ill-judged, but if you read the content of his message something quite different emerges.

The real lesson here is this. Despite having only known a digital age (as we are constantly reminded by sociologists), even students are largely technophobic. None of them had bothered to adjust or think about their privacy settings because that's technical and time-consuming and regular people just want to plug and play.

Now, for sure, there's an argument to be made that the default setting should have been extreme privacy which users could then liberalise. That seems perfectly sensible to me but, of course, that might just reveal that people don't want to be as connected as the hype suggests.


Blogger A.R.Yngve said...

So the secondary moral is "There's no pleasing some people"?

3:59 AM, September 08, 2006  
Blogger john dodds said...

That's true and I think there's a definite case for rejecting some customers as being too much trouble. That doesn't apply of course to large numbers so the corollary should be - do everything you can to make it harder for your customers not to be pleased. In Facebook's case that would have meant not assuming their customers were as geeky as the website founders. Hmm - seems like I've made that point before.

4:34 AM, September 08, 2006  

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