A mixed bag for Facebook (July 23, 2012)
Last week’s leading Facebook story was the arrest of two teens linked to the murder of a 65 year-old man through a video posted on the social networking site. Malik Jones, 16, has been charged for the murder of Delfino Mora after punching him in the jaw, causing him to fall to the ground and crack his skull. A video of the attack was posted on Facebook where it attracted the attention of users who showed it to the police.
While online surveillance did not pick up on this incident, Facebook software now provides law enforcement authorities with a new tool to target online sexual predators, which led to the capture of a man who
…was chatting about sex with a 13-year-old South Florida girl and planned to meet her after middle-school classes the next day.
Speaking of sexual predators, Nestle had an unfortunate episode last week when it inadvertently used an image closely resembling ‘pedo-bear’ in an advertisement announcing the arrival of Kit Kat on Facebook’s Instagram. The failure of online advertising executives to recognise the likeness to a widely recognised internet meme suggests a lack of connection with their target market. Perhaps this embarrassing mistake will teach the suits to stay up to date.
The news that banks may soon be offering their services on Facebook provoked excitement among some users, while others are sceptical that the site can provide sufficient security for such a sensitive undertaking. This development would certainly cement the place of social media in everyday life, though recent security breaches on other networks are likely to keep some users away, at least until is has been proven safe.
While Facebook banking may be some time away, some users got a significant boost to their options last week. Residents in Washington State are now able to register to vote through the site reported Rachel La Corte, while Android users can
…access, listen to, and post status updates and comments – all by voice – to their Facebook news feed via Friends Aloud.
In spite of the new services offered by Facebook, it seems that users are still not happy, customer satisfaction dropped 8 percent according to a recent study, reported Donna Tam. To make matters worse, user growth in Asia is also slowing. While Lim Yung-Hui did not speculate as to the reasons for this, it could be due to competition from other social networking sites.
On a brighter note, the Global Facebook Advertising Report showed that Facebook’s advertising revenue increased significantly in the second quarter of 2012. “Facebook’s average cost per thousand impressions has increased by 58 percent…” said Emil Protalinski “meaning Facebook is earning more and more from its ads.”
All in all, a fairly unspectacular week for Facebook.