Success Of Myspace

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Geocities was the first social networking site, produced in 1994, and this enabled users to form and customize websites they created. launched a year later and this enabled users to produce individualized content as well as engage with people with similar hobbies and interests. AOL Instant Messenger and were social networks launched in 1997 and this is when innovative features such as searchable profiles and instant messaging began, so users had the ability to interact with friends at their convenience.

MySpace soon came to the fore and garnered success due to its videos, music, and online hipper characteristics. It eventually gathered 75.9 million users at its peak in 2008 and it was the most visited website in the world in 2006, surpassing Google in the process. After MySpace got sold, its growth continued, and by 2008 it was producing around $800 million in sales. Nevertheless, MySpace lost market share to Facebook soon enough as a result of its easy-to-use format and additional functionalities. Another reason why MySpace lost market share is its 3-year advertising agreement with Google in 2006 that overloaded the website with advertisements and made the website more difficult to navigate around (Jesdanun, 2006). Despite the downfall, Myspace still exists.

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LinkedIn was established in 2003 and its success was due to its more formal, professional, and enterprise approach to social networking it had. Other social networks focused on instant messaging, gaining popularity, and displaying memorable events through a photo platform, but LinkedIn concentrated on building a database of employers and individuals with professional jobs. LinkedIn has over 500 million registered users.

Mark Zuckerburg created Facebook in 2004, and the main aim was to connect American college students. Initially, it was for exclusive members-only and the way to gain membership was to be invited. This feature was a hit and over 50% of Harvard students joined in the first month. 2 years later, Facebook becomes open to the public and by 2008, it became more popular than MySpace. Today, Facebook has over 2 billion registered users globally.

In March 2006, Twitter was created by 4 people including Jack Dorsey and Evan Williams. Its individualistic features included limiting users to 140 characters per tweet. However, in 2017, it doubled this character limit. Being valued at $14.2 billion, it was listed on the public stock exchange in 2013 (Keith, 2019). Twitter now has 126 million users that are active on a daily basis.

In September 2011, Snapchat was created by Evan Spiegel, Bobby Murphy, and Reggie Brown (Keith, 2019). Its individualistic characteristic was that it enabled members to transfer pictures to each other that would no longer appear soon after being opened. Nowadays, Snapchat also allows people to message each other and share a “24-hour story,” giving users the ability to display and save photos for a whole day. Snapchat has around 186 million active users, being very popular among young people.

Generic Architecture to describe Social Networking and a Real World Example(Facebook)

Social Networking uses client-server applications that are stored and hosted in the cloud. This requires the usage of advanced WIFI connectivity to interact with millions or

billions of members through mobile frontend technological mechanisms that can support 2-way interactions using enhanced multimedia. Such mobile devices and mechanisms are also enhanced with sensors such as GPS, microphones, speakers, cameras, etc to identify geographical and environmental information. Innovations like these help to execute the most simplistic functions of Social Computing applications by forming the 4 application-specific characteristics of Social Interaction, Share Content, Action Taking, and Aggregate Knowledge. These 4 characteristics exist in all applications and it depends on the application which characteristic takes precedence over the other (Ginige, A. and Fernando, M, 2015).

When using these applications, the 4 application characteristics lead to emergent characteristics that take two forms; an emotion inside the user and perception the user has towards the application both of which make humans more motivated to repeat actions such as organizing an event and meeting offline. Humans do act in these philosophical ways to satisfy pivotal human needs as provided in this Facebook example below.

The main application characteristic of Facebook is social interaction and this drives the other 3 applications. When the 4 characteristics work in conjunction, they lead to emergent characteristics such as trust, belongingness, and acceptance. Trust can be gained in a person or business page due to likes, shares, and reviews. The feeling of belongingness can be formed by joining a group that shares a similar interest in a particular sport, musical artist, and political subject. Acceptance and inclusivity can be formed when friends or mutual friends invite one another to events or tag them on memorable photos, videos, and important posts. These feelings that emerge in users are one part of the emergent characteristics (the emotion within the user as described above). The other part is perceptions they have towards the application (Ginige, A. and Fernando, M, 2015). One perception could be the convenience of the application as a result of having easy access to a substantial variety of information on products and services. Perception of an efficient platform is created as a result of friends who live worlds apart being able to instantaneously connect. It is economic as there is no financial cost to use it as long as one has a device and business connectivity. These emerging characteristics lead to certain repetitive actions such as sharing information and organizing an event. These actions are philosophically inclined to meet a pivotal human need as described in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Facebook users acted online by sharing and organizing events whilst offline they physically met in those events. By doing so, they socially interacted with peers hence built new and strengthened existing relationships. This relates to level 3 of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs; belongingness.

Future development opportunities for Social Networks

The growth of social networks such as LinkedIn will only accelerate in the coming years as high-speed internet and mobile devices will go mainstream in several underdeveloped nations of the world, which will hop onto the social and business computing bandwagon.

In addition to accelerating social growth, we could also see some shift in the popularity of different social media channels. Social networking market leaders such as Facebook and Twitter could lose further market share to Instagram due to its more mobile-friendly platform which gives it a narrower array of content types. The vast majority of social content is being consumed in a mobile environment, hence that structural advantage is significant.

Product discovery could ultimately become a social networking experience as traditional discovery channels such as online reviews and search engines lose ground to the growing emergence of social networking websites, which is highly popular among young people and probably future generations. This could lead to significant growth in social selling and social commerce in the long run. Major brands and small businesses already use and will continue to use websites such as Facebook and Twitter to advertise products and services as a result of its cheap marketing costs and ability to connect with mass numbers of customers.

The main determinant of social networking success will probably be video in the future. Social videos produce a mammoth 1200% more shares than text and images all together. Furthermore, 82% prefer to watch live brand videos instead of reading their social media posts and 80% would prefer to view a live video instead of skimming and reading through a blog post (Hasan, 2018). Hence, marketers should tether to this demand by marketing products and services on the video to remain competitive. Azriel Ratz, CEO of Ratz Pack Media, said that in 2018 ‘’LinkedIn plans to launch video ads, giving even more strength to its advertising platform: LinkedIn Ads’’ (Guidara, 2019). Generation Z is setting a social networking trend and businesses should look to exploit this by tailoring products and services through video resolutions since young people are statistically more likely to enjoy this visual form of marketing.


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