Take Facebook Watch. Ask a journalist or HN commenter, and they’ll tell you that it’s a content wasteland, a flop, a waste of investment. Here’s what Zuckerberg said about Watch on the earnings call:
"There are now 400 million people who use it every month, and people spend on average over 20 minutes on Watch daily."
That’s a lot more monthly active users than Snapchat has — for a part of the app which everyone automatically assumes to be a flop. That’s what global 2.3 billion users looks like: your local anecdata doesn’t tell anything.
The market’s had a hard time deciding what to make of all the “scandals” but the past few headlines have had less and less of an effect on the stock. The TC article that came out yesterday had absolutely zero effect which surprised me a little and the news that they might receive a record fine a week or two ago knocked the stock down for literally twelve minutes before it sprang back up (I was following it that day). I think the market is finally ready to move past all of this and focus on what moves Facebook is going to make going forward because it’s quite obvious users and advertisers don’t care about any of this.
I think there are two camps out to get Facebook for reasons that go beyond privacy- media outlets threatened by its existence and Twitter users who have amassed a large following and view it as an “us versus them” dynamic because they’ve come to rely on Twitter as a communication mechanism. To view Twitter as any better is completely illogical but media outlets are happy to choose favorites if it suits them.
Hopefully it will be possible to have reasonable discourse on HN again instead of the constant flaming.
Is it that the media companies are going broke because of FB and so they hate them, or is it media companies have vast amounts of capital at their disposal to try and bring them to ruin.
My understanding of media’s situation is quite different, and the downswing started occurring a longer time before FB came around.
First hand I can tell you that they don’t expect to take FB down and return to former glory.
Some are even looking at buyouts to return to more of a startup/reboot phase. Not a conspiracy to stick it to anyone else.
The media has always put dominant companies under substantial scrutiny, IBM, Microsoft, Google, Apple, Equifax have all had their fair share of tough stories over the years.
I see nothing particularly unfair in the way that Facebook's travails have been reported. Rather than talking in generalities, perhaps you could give some specific examples of stories that have treated Facebook unfairly.
Video 1: Sheet Pan Chicken Fajita Crunchwrap (recipe video).
My comment: I basically never cook and I would never watch a cooking video.
Video 2: "THE NUN PRANK" (some young idiots doing a prank in an underground parking lot).
My comment: I find this totally moronic.
Video 3: Banana Bread on a stick (another recipe video).
My comment: Zero interest in this.
Video 4: Brave Boy Kills Giant Tiger (looks like a trailer for a cheesy Bollywood kind of movie)
My comment: I don't watch this kind of thing at all and have zero interest.
Video 5: "Lilwin" (looks like an amateur video set in Africa with two people speaking an unknown language)
My comment: I have no fucking clue why this was recommended to me.
Conclusion: FB watch is total shit.
> Conclusion: FB watch is total shit.
Did you expect it to just magically know your preferences?
Given I first opened my Facebook account 10 years ago and I've been posting status update and liking various bands and TV shows, I would expect it to be able to have a fair guess of things I might like.
It's recommending videos that aren't even in ENGLISH! I mean, I have "liked" TV shows on Facebook, artists/bands, I've posted about books I've enjoyed, movies I've liked. It knows my age, gender, location, friends, job, etc. You'd think if they were as good at recommending as some people make out they could do a decent job.
There isn't a single piece of content in my top 20 videos I'd want to watch.
It's a joke. If this is the state of their AI recommending tech they need to fire their data scientists.
It seems smart people expect others to read between the lines but when average people can't read between lines, same average people resort to downvoted then finally once smart person explains himself, they take his side
Every time I'm about to click on a youtube link / watch an embedded video I ask myself if it's worth influencing my future recommendations - which are not great, but not too far off either. If the content is outside my core interests or music tastes I opt to watch in incognito mode.
I once made the mistake to play Peppa the Pig for my daughter while signed in, and my recommendations became a mess for weeks.
I do this all the time. Often, I click on "smart" videos, which I have no intention of watching just in the hope I get better quality content in my "feed". But it's hard to find high quality content, yet it's easy to find mindless dribble.
+1 to this. I watched a few Super Smash Bros Ultimate compilations at around the time it was released, and got some recommendations. I don't own a Switch so I don't know the game, plus its a novelty, so they caught my curiosity.
I went down a such rabbit-hole of mindless dribble --endless videos of videogame characters punching each other-- I actually tired myself and am no longer considering buying the game/console. It's such mindless consumption.
> Often, I click on "smart" videos, which I have no intention of watching just in the hope I get better quality content in my "feed".
I need to try this.
Now Youtube thinks my biggest interest is how to replace and repair every other thing on that same model of car, other models by the same make, etc.
YouTube's recommendation algorithm is one of the worst I use. I have to actively manage my subscriptions and many people I know mass click "not interested" on videos to try to improve it. Spotify, Amazon, Netflix, and pretty much every other recommendation works like magic by now.
There's something really wrong with it.
Spotify probably has it a bit tougher, but my guess is playlists play a big role as they are curated clustering of similar music (as opposed to just a "folder" to put all videos in a series, like they are on YouTube). Music itself is also probably much easier to analyze than video: extract the BPM and frequencies and you can tell a lot about the composition of type of song it's from. Video on the other hand-- you can do very computationally intensive CV, but that won't tell you much about the mood, meaning, genre, etc. of video something is.
YouTube many times will have to go off a title, a very vague description and a ton of irrelevant comments.
Edit: Actually, they have captions. I'd assume dialogue could give them a lot of relevant information, who knows ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
On the other hand, searching for "GPL v3" actually gets relevant YouTube results, so they are out there and YouTube knows how to find them if you ask the right way.
-Anyone who feels strongly against Facebook will have stopped using it
If both of these are true, the typical person commenting about its evils will have a poor idea of how it's actually used. So someone telling me it's damaging my mental health because of social gratification - I haven't posted anything real-life in years - falls about as flat as someone saying Reddit is a website for sharing weight loss pictures.
There are important points to be made about Facebook but they're lost in the noise.
That's a pretty big assumption. People's feelings can and do change based on new information.
Neither is alcohol, nor is gambling.
To be less facetious, I don't see why the claim that facebook can't possibly be addictive, is so self-evident that it's a tautology. I can understand people having different stances in the debate on whether it's addictive, but denying that there's a debate to be had seems completely misguided.
(Also, there can be reasons other than addiction for people using facebook despite feeling strongly against it — e.g. peer pressure.)
So, more precisely, your point was actually "anyone who had been feeling strongly about it at some arbitrary point in time will have stopped using it by that arbitrary point in time". Yes, that's a bit easier to justify but still quite uncertain (IMO) and also a much weaker statement.
Also, just because the stimulus isn't a molecule it does not follow that it's not biochemical in nature. Physics and biochemistry play a role all the way down. The very notion of "stimulus" depends on where we draw the murky, fuzzy and ultimately arbitrary border between "us" and "the world".
Please define "strongly".
I know many people who really dislike Facebook, but still use it for business reasons or since their parents, best friend, local community, ... use it to share information or scheduling events.
Movie X is a flop, because it's opening weekend in US is disappointing. Goes on do excellently Worldwide, especially outside opening weekend.
Search engine X is a flop, because it's market share in US is negligible. Goes on to have solid user number in China and Germany.
It's probably not helped by the strong desire to link future performance predictions to easily available metrics, and never re-evaluating these. Just because the US has driven growth and profits in the past for X, doesn't mean it always will... but's it good enough for knee jerk reactions that generate views.
In Europe it's the same story for Facebook. I remember Facebook predecessors that had the same "well my parents are on it now and the same idiots keep posting bullshit over and over so I just lurk now and then" moment and none of them is really important anymore. I mean. MySpace is doing better than all of the others, which is about as good as Yahoo!.
Duh. Facebook starts running the videos as soon as you open the Facebook page. If you open a video and watch it, it'll start a new one in 3-4 seconds. Unless they remove these practices, it is not clear how much of that 20 minutes is due to their aggressive behavior.
So why is everyone uncritically peddling these numbers?
However the Economist had an interesting take on Facebooks success outside the US: Their sales outside the US is equivalent to that of a medium size biscuit maker.
So is Watch successful because 400 million people use it, or does it also generate substantial profit for Facebook?
Maybe. For me personally I’m just not interested.
To me it seems like yet another “me too” feature which Facebook has copied from instagram or Snapchat or whoever did it first. Not to mention I don’t care about this feature on the other platforms either.
The feature itself just looks like a desperate attempt at trying to show that they are still “innovating” their fairly stagnant platforms, just for the sake of innovating.
And here Facebook looks even more desperate in plainly “me too” copying this non-feature.
Not that I would trust Facebook's numbers considering the amount of lying and shady practices they employ.
- 4Q EPS $2.38, Est. $2.18
- 4Q Rev. $16.91B, Est. $16.39B
- 4Q Mobile Ad Rev. as % Ad Rev. 93%
- Mobile represents 93% of ad revenue. Mark doesn't get enough credit for his big switch to mobile,
- Cost of revenue up 74 percent year over year
- Operating costs went up by 60%, Note this is more than their growth rate, really the only concerning thing from a good quarter
- Annual capex is $13.9 billion, pretty close to what Microsoft spends
- CFO is talking about phasing out Facebook only numbers and just disclosing total numbers(Insta, WhatsApp, and FB rolled into one)
- 4Q MAU 2.32B, Est. 2.32B
- 4Q DAU 1.52B, Est. 1.51B
- DAU up in Europe for first time in 2-3 quarters, Flat in North America
- instagram stories has 500M DAU
- Headcount was 35,587 at year end. Increase of 42% for the year!!
- shares back up to Oct levels,
- turns out the markets like companies who can mint money and both users and advertisers just don't care at all about facebooks scandals
- more after hours trading than alot of stocks get during the entire day
- Zuckerberg saying that messaging growing faster than any other area. It will become more central to the social experience on Facebook's apps.
Where does the growth come next though? Do they need to diversify their revenue streams away from advertising? Do they just start paying out dividends or can they really reinvest earnings at a sufficient return to satisfy shareholders?
They did selectively start buying back shares recently as a form of capital return. I'd expect that to continue to the extent the stock remains modestly priced versus the business growth rate.
If all they do is keep on the same path, they easily get from here to $100+ billion in sales by doing nothing special beyond what they're already doing. Plus ~$35 billion in profit to go with it.
A mere 6% average sales growth per year for the next ten years gets them to $100b in sales. More likely, they get there in fiscal 2022 without much trouble.
I'm amazed they haven't taken a crack at Google with a search engine in their app. Imagine how valuable combining Facebook's data with the user intent of search? A lot of users would never leave the facebook app on their phone if they could get a search engine that's halfway decent. It seems like they are leaving a ton of money on the table as it stands
If its too much to develop their own maybe they could team up with Bing or something?
Looks too stable to me (especially taking into account the scandals).
What's the definition of DAU anyway? E.g. if I used it on 2 days in a row, e.g. yesterday and today, and then do nothing, am I counted as a DAU or not for that quarter? Or maybe I have to be active for at least 50% of the total days of the quarter? Etc... .
This quote from an analyst is one reason why I believe the user numbers.
> "It's hard to get people to stop using something they love. People love using these products, and there's these massive attacks that news outlets continue to heap on them, but consumers like these platforms and advertisers follow eyeballs. Most of Facebook's advertisers have no other place to go with a return on investment this good. This is clear proof."
In my dream world I'd love to see a more granular ARPU breakdown and how much of that came from growth in ad impressions/user vs. increased CPMs for advertisers as well as some sort of count of advertisers and their spend by tier of advertiser size. If I recall correctly, one of the fairly recent moves was cutting bad on FB feed ad frequency which resulted in increasing CPMs and in theory concentrating the advertiser base further to those big brands that can afford the higher CPMs.
Many advertisers are experiencing higher CPMs on FB properties as one might expect as they consolidate their hold on the market. As that continues, at a certain point ROI may not be that good, and they may see diminishing returns and look elsewhere. That's the normal cycle of saturation of ad sources. The question is how long FB can stretch that out and innovate.
In the meanwhile I found this (2015) about MAU: https://www.adweek.com/digital/monthly-active-users-definiti...
>>We define a monthly active user as a registered Facebook user who logged in and visited Facebook through our website or a mobile device, or used our Messenger app (and is also a registered Facebook user), in the last 30 days as of the date of measurement.
I suppose that DAU is the same, but of course daily.
Still, the chart looks too nice to me => personally, I always automatically mistrust any chart that looks that nice/regular.
Do we know what percentage of this could be from bots or other third party software?
I’d love to see independent polling via street surveys in a few countries to test their numbers.
Dumping here links of DAU/MAU charts of other apps (no specific selection - it's all what I was able to find):
- WeChat: https://www.statista.com/statistics/255778/number-of-active-...
- Twitter: https://www.statista.com/statistics/282087/number-of-monthly...
- Instagram: https://www.statista.com/statistics/253577/number-of-monthly...
The most stable one seems to be the one of WeChat? I personally understood that without it, when living in China, your life can get very hard as you're not even able to pay for some services or get loans etc... (therefore there is a lot a direct pressure to use it).
You mean you'd expect a meaningful drop. Why? I expected very little consequence. People know Facebook doesn't cost them a monthly fee to use, they realize it's a huge entity that runs advertising to pay the bills. Everyone using the Internet these days is familiar with advertising online. The bulk of the users are precisely the ones that aren't shocked by the privacy scandal. They get to use Facebook and don't have to pay cash for it, they know the deal even if only broadly. Despite the endless attempts by the media to portray all FB users as ignorant.
Target had a huge scandal of stolen customer information. They didn't lose a big part of their sales. Equifax isn't going out of business. Few consumers stopped using Windows over Microsoft's business tactics in the 1990s or after. Walmart used to particularly pay their employees terribly and were pretty vicious cutthroats with suppliers and competitors (still are), outside of a tiny group none of it stopped people from shopping there. Amazon is guilty of a lot of that same behavior over the last two decades.
There's a required threshold for how bad Facebook's behavior would have to be, to turn the average user off of their 'free' service. They haven't got near that level yet. For most people it's a useful social utility that connects them to everyone they know and they don't have to pay money for it. Users will put up with a lot accordingly.
That would assume that news is accurately reporting reality. News is a business as well, you create issues, pile on, and gather ad impressions. There's definitely built-in pressure to exaggerate as a result.
Some of the most egregious is attributing short-term market trends with specific political issues (as opposed to noise or changes market fundamentals).
The darker side is when how news companies can shape public perception. In this case, the business models of the news are under attack by content aggregators like facebook and google.
I can’t remember when I last heard a person say “I love facebook.” Plenty saying “I hate it” though.
Maybe he was alluding to “are addicted to” or “are manipulated into using?”
People don’t use Facebook because they love it. They resent it and but use it, mostly. Which makes me think it’s headed for a steep decline.
I also think "there's nothing wrong with messenger", I don't finds its experience loathsome like Facebook. That said, I also don't "love" it any more than Signal, Whatsapp, iMessage etc. It'll be really interesting to see how the unification of messaging works out - they could "Facebookify " it, I wonder how people will respond if there's a stronger focus on ads.
Or maybe they have no choice. If car companies only make black cars, it doesn't necessarily mean that black is everyone's favorite color.
But, in the end all of them are monitored so there is no choice there. The main argument/excuse for acceptance seems to be that it is better to be spied on by your own government than somebody else's.
AFAIK, you count the number unique users each day, and then compute the average over a period like a quarter. Media reports often make it sound like a DAU is someone who uses a service each and every day, but this is obviously wrong.
So to claim that there is no downside to targeted marketing is simply false. We have very little understanding what sort of effects it has on consumers, and as far as we know they're not all good.
There is no reason to believe any deliberation on part of consumers here is rational. The relationship between self harm and social media usage in adolescents are well documented as well.
So it is quite ironic to assert that being concerned about facebook's behaviour is 'ideological', when in fact advocates seem to willfully ignore evidence that suggests that we're playing dice with people's psychology here.
If social media makes you unhappy just stop using it.
This answer is far too simplistic for the reality of the situation.
For example, what of the people who never used it (or did stop using it) and their correlated shadow profiles? What is the supposed answer, then: Don't give your contact information to your friends? Don't use the internet, at all, because of Facebook Pixel?
...but the bulk-share of the problem, for me specifically, is that treasure-troves of information on people are the ripest targets for either exploit or out-right theft. See the OPM hack for a principle example of such theft and then look at the Snowden leaks, where he shows that <insert three-lettered agency here> was in major tech companies' bases, killing their do0dz.
The potential problems (and their requisite solutions) aren't as simple as you're trying to paint them to be.
To summarise this long diatribe: I don't pretend to have an answer, to be sure, but to say that stopping Facebook usage is sufficient is disingenuous to the realities of what the company does; especially, since data about you is still being collected anyway.
 - https://www.cnet.com/news/shadow-profiles-facebook-has-infor...
 - https://www.oberlo.com/blog/facebook-pixel
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Office_of_Personnel_Management...
 - https://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jul/11/microsoft-nsa-...
Why do I say the study was dubious? They showed a small number of undergraduates a luxury watch ad and told them it was being shown to them based on their behavior. Those participants then rated themselves more sophisticated. Of course if someone frames it like that they would say they were sophisticated. What is the negative there?
Most people using FB aren't thinking that though, they're just silently ignoring the ads on the side of the content they actually want.
An altered self image as the result of merely staring at a luxury watch advertisement is more than a little conncering. If psychological self assessment changes even in the context of a small study, what do hours of this stuff per day do to the human brain?
the precautionary principle implies that we don't run an unsupervised experiment on the psyche of two billion people on the planet which primarily serves the purpose of distributing money to facebook.
Large detrimental downstream effects and people's perceptions and trends all happen on timescales on the order of magnitude of a decade. Give it a few years.
How about subtle data-directed lobbying to cause subtle data-directed changes to the educational system to create subtle data-directed vulnerabilities to manipulation in adulthood?
There are plenty of examples in the real world, throughout history. It is going to get a whole lot worse, and it has the potential to never get better.
IMO the core reason people keep using this shady service is that they've just never been exposed to the truth.
The issue is they either dont truly understand the technical implications or they have already been so invested into Facebook personally and with no alternative to migrate to in sight (they bought Intagram which could of been one) they have no recourse currently. I hear it all the time here about events being vital or just connecting with family.
But it’s of course a easy way to defend ones point of view :)
As an anecdote, my father is a non-dumb person who at some point started using Facebook out of a combination of curiosity and a feeling of missing out. He can use a computer proficiently for the things he needs and is quite adept at learning to use it for new use cases on his own. Yet he is far from a technological expert with as good as overview of the whole picture. Once I explained it to him over a course of several conversations, he was concerned and stopped using it.
But maybe (just dumping some thoughts), after the scandals, DAU and MAU might not be anymore as relevant as in the past for Facebook's data collection if users, who are now (supposed to be) more aware of their data being shared and used actively for not only good stuff, just keep using it for only e.g. trivial posts (e.g. "I bought a bike today" instead of "I support/hate the president blahblah") or maybe make it more challenging for AI/aggregation using "irony" (algorithm would understand it as it's written, but the human interpretation would actually be the opposite), etc... . But maybe I'm just a desperate deluded optimist :)
They just aren't worried enough about Facebook violating their privacy enough to stop using it. Frankly for most people that is the right decision. Facebook has done much less immoral stuff than the media would have you believe. Even the Cambridge Analytica type stuff (i.e. the obvious potential for abuse of the Friends API) was totally public at the time but nobody cared.
There was a FB group with a million users protesting the opening up of FB to their moms and grandmas.
Some friends and I created an alternative social network at our university to capitalize. In my opinion it looked better and had more features (before they opened up their API). We were college students only, and had SSL (can you imagine back then sites without SSL?!).
We were at the first techcrunch 50. We were located in "the pit".
We didn't gain much coversge we didn't get traction at our university and well, we flopped.
Pricacy doesn't matter to the average user.
Eternal September exists everywhere. =]
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eternal_September
Just because my friend buys a pack of cigarettes a day doesn't mean he doesn't care about cancer.
My view: Loss of privacy is a negative externality of using Facebook. And we know companies can use shiny stuff (compelling-engaging products, PR, advertising, etc.) to overcome these kinds of negative externalities and keep customers coming back.
I do think that your point about serious legislation is correct. Cigarette smoking in countries with serious legislation IS down, the question is if the political will is there and if Facebook's power can or can't outweigh that political will.
Every court case, summons and data breach are instructions manuals and tools for advertisers. These are public and much more useful than an outdated Udemy course selling shovels.
Advertisers will continue spending more after each scandal, and they will be better targeted ads, making Facebook have more utility to users at the same time. Any proposed legislation ought to make advertisers spend more before the gravy train is over.
Facebooks share price increase cant be seen as validation from its profile creators which are the product. These numbers didnt jump they offset and stay the same.
Keeping so many aspects of your life private comes with a price. There is inconvenience, there is overhead, and there is always fear that one day your private assets will be compromised and laid bare.
The less private you are, the more you have to share, and the more you have to share, the richer and more meaningful your experiences will be: with other people, and even with other businesses.
But if you are very private, you have little to share. You miss out on the social conversation of humanity, and businesses will treat you as another generic faceless entity, throwing whatever crap they can at you hoping it sticks. Why would anyone want that?
And mass surveillance and data collection combined with blackbox machine learning techniques are somehow producing a different outcome?
I think it is very misguided to conclude that people don't need privacy from all of this. Most of what people use Facebook and friends for is private, they just haven't been seriously and obviously burned enough from the fact that a large number of corporate entities are siphoning it up.
Maybe they'll never get burned enough. Maybe it all turns out well. But concluding that no people do not need privacy as a basic psychological need is wrong. I know I do and I don't have a bad social life because of it.
I wrote more about this last year, specifically focusing on Zuckerberg's rumors of eyeing the presidency:
and after they deleted facebook, they went on their Instagrams.
In any case I feel that all this focus on Facebook makes people forget that Instagram is far more important now then any other social network, and also the fastest growing one.
The best way to think about Facebook is that it is a time filler. I don't know where I read it but an average FB session lasts around 75-90 seconds. People use it when they are in a line or when they are in an elevator. It is a great way to stay in touch with what your friends are doing or communicate with them. I find it very difficult to understand what is to hate about that. Sure there is data usage with which some people are upset but you can just go ahead and disable that in settings (assuming you are comfortable with less relevant ads).
Also, it is time to #undeleteFacebook. You know you are missing it!
> Also, it is time to #undeleteFacebook. You know you are missing it!
No, it isn't and no, I'm really not. I don't need a "time filler". The mind needs some time off. It pays off to give it that time and perhaps be a bit more mindful instead of populating every moment with crap.
It is all good to come here and spread hatred about FB. But if you have principled stand against privacy, you won't use any of the major services that are supported by ads. Stop using Google Search, Maps, GMail, Instagram, Whatsapp, Twitter & YouTube.
However, even if I wasn't doing all of that, it would make sense to reject any one of those, even if I wasn't rejecting them all. You have to start somewhere and Facebook is as good a place to start as any. The existence of many bad actors doesn't mean we should be paralyzed because we cannot achieve a perfect solution all at once.
I do in fact refuse to use Facebook primarily because of their stance (and
actions) related to privacy. I don't especially like their service either, but
the service itself has its merits.
Not all internet actors are equally bad. The largest corporate actors with
the currently largest internet presence are bad. This is an argument against
using the services offered by those actors. Is there any point in trying to
quantify which one is the worst? The seven services you named are all owned by
three entities, with Facebook owning two on that list (WhatsApp and Instagram).
That firmly ranks it as one of the worst.
I will certainly call out Facebook specifically in a thread specifically about
Facebook. And again, even cutting out one of those is better than cutting out
none since you have to start somewhere.
But my point is orthogonal to that. My point is FB is alive and well, and the recent scandals, as damaging as they seemed PR-wise, have done basically nothing to it.
Haven’t used it in over 3 years, and I don’t miss it. It got to the point of why I was wondering why I’d sit there flicking through the news feed only to read about what someone’s aunt Joan was going on a racist rant about.
Instagram hasn’t been any better with the rise and incouragement of influencer culture.
They’re increasingly subversive in their tactics which is something I’ve always disliked in any company.
They get to a certain size and have to keep pushing for growth as they need to further maintain their growth rates to prove they’re still worth investment money.
Where does that end?
In a heavily diluted form they would both be fine, but the dark patterns in their designs are prevalent, in spite of what good they might have offered the world.
I don’t give Coca Cola a pass because their drink tastes good and can make people happy at times. They’ve cordoned off entire towns water supplies through shady dealings. Know what I mean?
Past success no guarantee of future returns of course.
So I propose a dictatorship of HN commenters ;)
Any regulation introduced, would be to stop this change. But it will never work, you can't make people care about privacy through regulations.
What are the precise definitions of daily and monthly active users? To be a daily user, do you literally have to use Facebook every day for a month?
To get the ratio of DAU to MAU, you can either take the average DAU for each day of the month, and then compare that to the MAU, or you can take the DAU to MAU ratio for each day and then average that. They'll both come out about the same (doing it the second way smoothes it out just a bit more because of the loss of precision which makes the month to month comparisons or quarter to quarter a little smoother).
My interpretation of that would be that if, prior to that change, you logged to spotify with facebook and didn't uncheck the 'share' button you would have been counted, but after you would not have been.
I do find it rather curious that they simply count any user that logs in and 'visited' facebook. i.e. that no 'actions' need to take place or there isn't any metric for time on site required. Seems rather easy to game that number by just not going after bot accounts.
But at the end of the day there's one number that matters: people click ads and buy products -> companies buy ads and pay fees. And it's been going up steadily for the past decade.
If you strongly believe that you've found an inefficiency in the market please feel free to short FB.
Otherwise it be easy to game
- The biggest problem with Facebook in terms of immediate impact is not loss of privacy, though that’s real. It’s behavioural manipulation, which has lots of very negative outcomes for you as a user as well as society. Don’t think you’re not been manipulated, you are, and you are susceptible to it. Your behaviour and emotions are negatively impacted by the fact you use facebook.
- This is not “capitalism” or “consumer voting with their money”. Firstly, due to network effects Facebook has a monopoly on their kind of product. The choice is Facebook vs no facebook. Second, the currency is time and attention to sell ads. Finally, most people are addicted to social media by design and it’s arguable whether they have a truly free choice. Is a gambling addict voting with their feet? The gambling addict knows they won’t win and usually knows they’re addicted; social media addicts people very subtly and manipulates you over time. Few people would admit to being addicted, but if you really think you’re not - fine, if it’s no big deal then just take a month off from social media and see what happens.
Good summary is Jaron Lanier’s interview https://youtu.be/kc_Jq42Og7Q
You certainly can’t treat anything he says as ground truth - you need independent figures.
What I meant to communnicate was "we shouldn't take these stats at face value and therefore assume the scandals have had no impact" but I made the mistake of phrasing it as if it were an assertion (not an interpretation I'm used to), being too pithy, and also using Zuckerberg's name rather than "social media"/"facebook".
I didn't mean it to be a tangent, just a genuine point that such statistics should be treated with healthy scepticism and therefore caution against concluding too much from them. Hopefully the last bit in the post at least indicates I was sincere. But totally my bad. Need to take more care.
I'm certainly often a contrarian, but never intentionally a troll.
Most of us consider our comments to be individual statements; we don't think of them as roots of the next possible subthread. But that's actually what matters for discussion quality.
It's very cool that on HN people sensibly and helpfully debated what I'd intended to say. Means I learn.
It isnt a baseless claim to point out the infallability of a CEO or the broken incentive model to tout bad information or consciously lie
Perhaps to be more generous I should say “exaggerating” or “being selective.”
Clearly his interests are aligned with higher stats. Therefore, it makes sense to corroborate those stats with independent data.
> "I didn’t claim he was lying."
Sure seems like you did...
"You claimed B!"
It seemed to me that he 'claimed' (if you want to use that term) that "A or B". I'm not sure what "A" was exactly, but he pretty clearly didnt just assert "B". Although sure, he did cast aspersions (or something), but he's hardly alone in doing that about his target. It would be novel to hear someone claim Zuckerberg is truthful, or say anything nice about the guy. The word "claim" was the problem here, I think. He may have suggested the possibility that Zuckerberg was lying, but claim that he was?! By what definition? "It's day..or night" "You claimed it's night!"
AFAIK "... or B" is a common idiomatic expression used to convey, in a sarcastic tone, the fact that the speaker disagrees with A, and considers B to be true.
Do you know how much of a field day of litigation the SEC would have if that were true?
Who's going to prove him wrong? Does anyone else have access to FB internal metrics? And what's the downside to lying? Worst case a slap on the wrist fine and a drop in stock price?
Zuck has repeatedly demonstrated himself to be the type of person who will absolutely take advantage of any situation without any kind of ethical qualms.
I'm not saying he's lying about this too, but it wouldn't surprise me in the least, SEC or no.
The stock increase is not unique to Facebook today. ALL major tech stocks are up today.
Facebook is up 4% in-hours, and 12% in after-hours trading.
Do you look at facts backed by data? FB is beating the market with a whip.
Honest question: Why are you so extremely passionate about this?