The dynamics of social interaction are changing profoundly, more so than at any time in human history. On-line social networks have redefined boundaries, challenged our concept of what privacy is, and profoundly altered who we distinguish as a “friend.” No development has captured the attention and imagination of the world’s population as completely as Facebook, the cyber-juggernaut that has propelled digital virtuoso Mark Zuckerberg – Harvard dropout, Facebook creator and CEO – to the singular status of “youngest self-made billionaire” in history.
Facebook Facts As of January 25th, 2011 www.checkfacebook.com
- Global audience of 599,149,160
- United States Facebook users – 148,216,200 (US population is 312 million)
- Gender of American Facebook users: male – 44.5%; female – 55.5%
- Age (US)
- < 13 0.6% 13.30 (millions)
- 18-24 30.9 45.91
- 25-34 22.3 33.00
- 35-44 15.3
- 45-54 11.3
- 55-64 6.7
- >65 3.9
- 10 largest countries – Facebook audience
- United States 148.2 (millions)
- Indonesia 34.3
- United Kingdom 27.9
- Turkey 25.1
- Philippines 21.7
- France 20.3
- India 19.8
- Mexico 19.7
- Italy 17.8
- Canada 16.9
- Fastest growth by country, by % of Facebook users
- South Korea
Facebook’s reach is unprecedented. With a global audience quickly closing in on 600 million users, it has done what no advertising agency, marketing campaign, media organization or other on-line social network could envision: fundamentally change the nature of human interaction in a half-decade. Zuckerberg’s brainchild has permeated the atmosphere of every social demographic, industry and government, with a name and logo as recognizable worldwide as Coca-Cola.
We are more interconnected by technology than at any time in history, but paradoxically we interact less – at least, in the traditional sense of human relations. Point to ponder: our current high school students have never lived in a world without email, cell phones or the World Wide Web, and for the most part, are doing fine (but doing it much differently than we did). Most have never played a vinyl record or 8-track, have never heard of PONG, and have never written and mailed a letter.
What the future of Facebook brings will be interesting, no doubt.
(By Chris Potter, School Resource Officer, South High School)