To Tin Yan


Week 5/6 Discussion 


  • Introduction
  • Key facts about Facebook
  • Characteristics:
  1. Digital footprint
  2. Death of distance
  3. Poly-directionality
  4. Network externalities

  • Conclusion


Facebook is by far the most popular social media site today with over 1.59 billion registered users who include individuals and entities (see chart). It is now one of the biggest websites globally with more than 400 million people visiting the site every month.

Key Factors About Facebook

  1. The proportion of internet users on Facebook is about 82% in the U.K. and 67% in the U.S. Of all social media sharings on iPhone, Facebook leads with a whopping 66%.
  2. It is estimated that Facebook's like or share buttons are embedded on about 7.5 million sites.
  3.    Facebook users are presented with over 1500 fresh pieces of content everyday.
  4. These facts point to some stunning characteristics of Facebook some of which are discussed here. 

Digital Footprint

The conversations we have on Facebook can be more public than we may realize as it is rather natural for us to lose track of everyone we have allowed access to those conversations.  Those who have access to these conversations can copy and send them to other people via email and other media. The same case applies to the information, pictures and videos we post on out profiles. While it is possible to delete your Facebook account, the data does not get erased and what was shared earlier cannot be deleted.

Digital Footprint (cont'd.)

The fact that Facebook can be easily connected to other social media sites such as Twitter makes it even easier for users to lose track of their data.

This is because those social media sites have a network of users who are connected to other networks.

Death Of Distance

  • Facebook killed not only geographical distance but time distance as well.
  • It connects people across vast distances around the world 
  • Enables people to get in touch with friends from the past. 

Death Of Distance (cont'd.)

It is even possible to communicate with several friends and acquaintances from different regions simultaneously.

This characteristic has helped save time and cost as far as social communication is concerned.

i.e. : calling a friend from New York to Istanbul would certainly cost much more than a click of a button on Facebook. It would be much more costly in terms of time and money to travel all the way to Istanbul to see the friend. 


Facebook is poly-directional as it assumes a source-message-channel-receiver model.

Users can serve as authors, senders, and recipients of content. They can also share or broadcast this content. With share or like buttons embedded on so many sites, it is evident that Facebook pervades the entire World Wide Web.  

Poly-Directionality (cont'd.)

Besides, individuals can connect their Facebook accounts to other social media accounts such as Twitter and linkedin. Likewise, users of other social media sites can connect their accounts with Facebook.

Further to this, traditional media are linked to Facebook as they seek to associate with its dominance in the media industry

Adding other Social Media Sites to Facebook Page

Network Externalities

With a huge user base, Facebook is the primary choice for many new social media users. Network externalities do not only relate to individual account holders, but also to business entities among others. 

Most if not all businesses and other organizations that use social media are on Facebook since majority of consumers are found on this social platform.The network externalities of Facebook are exploited for a host of benefits.

Network Externalities (cont'd)

However, Facebook is associated with negative network externalities:

  • It attracts cyber bullies
  • It encourages identity theft

Many people use Facebook at work or in class leading to:               *loss of productivity in the workplace 

    *poor academic achievement among students 


- Facebook is the most dominant social media site today. Based on the current trend, it may remain unrivaled for a long time to come.

- This means that the characteristics associated with Facebook as a digital platform may continue to get more pronounced.  

The End

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by tycto


Public - 5/6/16, 9:09 PM