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Facebook growth slows for second month

Facebook growth slows for second month

Facebook is still on course to hit 700 million users in the not too distant future.

Facebook, the world's most popular social networking website, has seen a second month of slowing growth.

The latest data was gathered by Inside Facebook using Facebook's advertising tool, and it shows large falls in the number of users in several countries.

According to the data, the site lost 6 million US users in May, while its Canadian user base dropped 1.52 million to 16.6 million. The site's number of users in the UK, Norway and Russia has also dropped by around the 100,000 mark.

Meanwhile, the total month-on-month growth dropped from April's 13.9 million new users to 11.8 million users in May. This is way down in comparison to the average of 20 million new users per month that was achieved last year.

The reduction in users is undoubtedly the most concerning factor, though, as it shows the possibility that many established users are quitting Facebook.

Despite the recent falls, Facebook is still on course to reach 700 million users by August, with 600 million users recorded at the start of the year, and 500 million in July 2010.

Have you stopped using Facebook? Do you think its user base will ever reach 1 billion people? Let us know in the forums.

Via The Guardian.

32 Comments

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coolius 13th June 2011, 13:26 Quote
The beginning of the end??
xMathiasD 13th June 2011, 13:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolius
The beginning of the end??

i agree on that one..
Stelph 13th June 2011, 13:34 Quote
Market saturation?
Odinster 13th June 2011, 13:36 Quote
People beginning to move away from the bane of time consumption that is facebook?

The amount of people that are uptodate on tech have already got facebook so its just the 'cather-up-er's' signing up?
Mentai 13th June 2011, 13:40 Quote
I did shut down my account for several months but after travelling overseas and having new friends wanting to keep in contact it just seemed the easiest way. I only login when someone PMs instead of emails me though.
MajorTom 13th June 2011, 14:03 Quote
So if I'm reading that correctly, they are still getting 11.8m new user sign ups every month? So this is less a case of people leaving (although still happening is small numbers), but that there are understandably less people who have yet to sign up. This had to happen at some point. There are only so many people in the world.
SMIFFYDUDE 13th June 2011, 14:18 Quote
Whats Facebook?
Draksis 13th June 2011, 14:20 Quote
Probably due to all the news about Facebook's security issues in the press lately.
Artanix 13th June 2011, 15:20 Quote
Bubbles isn't shrinking, just not growing as fast. Unless there's something else to soak up time wasters, this will be around for a while yet
TheStockBroker 13th June 2011, 15:24 Quote
Reduced growth is still growth!
Snips 13th June 2011, 15:27 Quote
There's only so few ways you can say "I'm taking a ****!"
Bauul 13th June 2011, 15:51 Quote
Meh, it's still growing faster than any time in the first six or so years of its existence. This is hardly a sign that Facebook is starting to struggle.

We're probably pretty saturated in first-world countries, but as long as access to the Internet continues to grow exponentially in developing nations Facebook doesn't have anything to worry about.
Oggyb 13th June 2011, 15:54 Quote
I know some people who have switched account after harrassment or they just want to start over, so they will count as a new user and a leaving user at the same time.
mattbailey 13th June 2011, 16:07 Quote
Maybe people just got a life!
HourBeforeDawn 13th June 2011, 16:12 Quote
well I think they pretty much have signed up everyone who has access to the internet lol.
Yemerich 13th June 2011, 16:47 Quote
hmm the ppl connected to the internet is limited, y'know?...
sometime the growth rate would slow down.
it is normal.

In that rate, it would take 43 years to have all the citizens in the world (considering 6 billions - outdated I know)
Spuzzell 13th June 2011, 17:43 Quote
I've only been on FB since January, but several things have changed on the site and are now really annoying even in just the short time I've been there.

I'm not going anywhere though. Yet :-)
schmidtbag 13th June 2011, 19:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oggyb
I know some people who have switched account after harrassment or they just want to start over, so they will count as a new user and a leaving user at the same time.

i thought the same thing.

overall facebook probably doesn't have anything to worry about. even if they had 100 million users that would still be a pretty successful website. i personally could care less what happens to it. i wouldn't mind if it suddenly disappeared, i think it ruins social lives.
thehippoz 13th June 2011, 20:14 Quote
I like the mobile features.. when someone comments it sends me a message and I can post back without a data plan- good for people with a phone

I dunno about the crowd that hangs out on fb all day.. never understood that- unless it's farmville addiction or something
Cookie Monster 13th June 2011, 20:52 Quote
I closed my account yesterday. I found it was a distraction, and I never used it for anything other than watching other people's updates.
Evildead666 13th June 2011, 22:26 Quote
I never use the thing. I don't really want to tell people my house is empty cos i'm at the shops, or away for a few weeks over the summer.

The one good thing was getting in touch with some old friends from school.
Showerhead 13th June 2011, 22:34 Quote
Was bound to happen eventually you will eventually run out of people who want to sign up. Maybe now at least we won't see such ridiculous valuations on how much the company would be worth on the stock market.
sixfootsideburns 13th June 2011, 22:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Showerhead
Was bound to happen eventually you will eventually run out of people who want to sign up. Maybe now at least we won't see such ridiculous valuations on how much the company would be worth on the stock market.

Rofl, 100% agree with this. My guess is its finally slowing down because so many people already have accounts. NOT SO HIPSTER ANYMORE NOW IS IT PUNKS!
jrs77 13th June 2011, 23:16 Quote
Facebook is a worthless service imho as multi-protocoll messangers like Miranda in addition to skype are doing a perfect job for the last ten years allready to keep in contact with my friends.
Sloth 13th June 2011, 23:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
Facebook is a worthless service imho as multi-protocoll messangers like Miranda in addition to skype are doing a perfect job for the last ten years allready to keep in contact with my friends.
I'm a huge Skype proponent, it keeps me in touch with all of my closer friends and easy to use voice chat really brings people together in way that text can't. Between that and Steam almost everyone is covered.

Facebook, however, is excellent for groups. The static nature of posts cuts out the realtime aspect of most messengers and the nature of status updates being broadcast means that every one of a person's friends can be updated at once. Got a funny video that you just know all of your friends will love? Throw it on Facebook, suddenly all of them can post and comment with each other even over the course of days.

Of course, that relies on having your actual friends as your Facebook friends. An overwhelming number of people add those who aren't their friends then moan about updates they don't care about. What do you expect?
SexyHyde 14th June 2011, 00:18 Quote
I've been contemplating shutting down my account, and have all but stopped using it. It's become quite boring really. I only keep it to track who of my friends gets whatsapp so I can chat rubbish and share photos. Facebook seems to be a solo experience, you put your info up and people seem to stalk rather then comment nowadays.
Fordy 14th June 2011, 01:06 Quote
I can't stand it - but I'm quite tied into it because so many people I know use it as their only form of communication/networking.

If I could get them all on Skype, I'd close my facebook account in a heartbeat.
CrapBag 14th June 2011, 01:13 Quote
Never signed up to facebook and never will.

I have no need to tell friends or strangers about my boring and rather sad life.
jrs77 14th June 2011, 02:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sloth
Facebook, however, is excellent for groups. The static nature of posts cuts out the realtime aspect of most messengers and the nature of status updates being broadcast means that every one of a person's friends can be updated at once. Got a funny video that you just know all of your friends will love? Throw it on Facebook, suddenly all of them can post and comment with each other even over the course of days.

Of course, that relies on having your actual friends as your Facebook friends. An overwhelming number of people add those who aren't their friends then moan about updates they don't care about. What do you expect?

Facebook is just as excellent for groups as mailing-lists. If I got something that I want to send to people who are currently not online anyways I simply send them a short eMail, which is then aswell static.

The biggest issue I have with a service like facebook is, that it is too damn centralized. If Zuckerberg decides tomorrow to change the EULA and remove all pictures because of copyright-infringements, then I sure doesn't want to depend on this service.

Peer-to-Peer, decentralization and open source is the way to go, which even skype and the other messanger-services do not provide us with.
IRC for example is still my favourite, but that's apparently not fancy enough for all those hip people outthere. And for decentralized communications I simply setup a local teamspeak-server where I can aswell meet up with a few friends simultanously to talk with, which is no problem with up to 10 people if you have 1 MBit upstream, you just need to reduce the codec a little bit.

Facebook is primarily for those who feel the urge to tell the whole world what they had for dinner or whatever. Only some, maybe 5% (the professionals like copmanies etc) make real use of the network to pass worthwile information.
Twitter is the better place for those who wan't to forward links and short bits to a broad audience actually.
[USRF]Obiwan 14th June 2011, 11:01 Quote
Are those people stepping into the next big social web thingy I don't know about? Maybe those people are fed up with all the advertising and stupid Q&Ad things, not to mention all those ridiculous games.

That's the whole problem see. At first it was plain and simple. Put some pics in albums, connect with friends and write stuff. It's all the expansions that kills it and makes it look bloated.
InSanCen 14th June 2011, 11:45 Quote
I do find it very useful for the Groups aspect. We can plan an outing very easily without the mess of OS, protocol and IM Program choices that plagued us using IM beforehand. We had this coming Saturdays trip sorted in less than a day, whereas it would be unlikely to catch everyone on IM to get the details sorted out in less than a fortnight.

I don't put anything up there that I don't want people to know though.
leveller 14th June 2011, 12:17 Quote
Facebook is rumoured to be launching a $100billion IPO very soon. Let's hope the pension investors steer clear ...
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