Tuesday, December 23, 2008


The annual post of the upcoming trends for 09.

I'm sure this trend prediction won't be as good as last year's crowd pleaser. And this year, well, it's all about too-open social networking and its imminent demise.

We've got a variety of socnets out there ranging from the one-dimensional to multi-dimensional viewpoints.
A one dimensional socnet is the Twitter or the LinkedIn- they provide a one sided view of your life. A user's own content uploads are highly controlled and access is fairly limited.

Facebook on the other hand is way too open. My grinch is grown from the multi dimensional variety.

It started out great- so much to see, so much to do. You can see what your friends are doing, you can play with apps, you can perve on photos, you can tag yourself and others in photos. You can write on walls.....ALL UNCENSORED. It goes up and only then do you have the option of taking it down, once people have the potential to see it.

Yes , you can change your settings so that only certain people can see certain things, blah blah- but it's confusing, a pain in the ass and really, it is either all on the FB, or nothing.

The excitement has died down. Lessons have been learned.

At first it was great to publicise what you were doing, where you were going and telling people your bits and bobs in an open, public space- but this is wearing out and fast.

People are expressing their concern at having to continually update and manage the facebook. They don't want people to know all their comings and goings- they no longer supply a response.
Applications are a pain in the ass. Everyone I "interviewed" expressed that they just deleted application invites.
Photos are great, but tagging can get embarrassing.

Right now, we're down to events, wall writing and photos as the primary FB activity. Applications and the rest are really dropping off in a big way. There is still room for email, even videos, but the effort required is slightly more than the other acceptable activities.

The biggest issue of all is that Facebook is stifling, and has begun to feel possessive- as if Facebook "owns us". It has become a chore and something a user must do to stay involved and connected to their friend group. But, this is becoming a cause for rejection. And it's happening. The Anti-Facebook Refusenick movement is going strong.

So my big trend for '09 (besides being the year of mobile of course), is that the user rejection of FB will continue its trickle down effect. And quite frankly, it's not unwarranted.

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