Commentary

In Clear Sign Of Trouble, Facebook Uniques Level Off At 7 Billion

Palo Alto, July 1, 2013: Yesterday, Facebook revealed that unique users had failed to show significant growth for the second quarter in a row, staying flat at roughly 7 billion uniques worldwide.

Although new users continue to grow in the infant demographic, a spokesperson for the company said that older users were dying off almost as fast as they were being replaced -- causing analysts to predict certain doom and devastation for the Web giant. "The bubble is finally popping," said a junior analyst from Forrester. "In all my 17 years on this earth, I've never seen anything like it."

Facebook management, however, is well aware of the market imperative for growth, and is taking drastic steps to get back on track. "We learned our lesson two years ago, in June of 2011, when the data indicated our user numbers were growing quickly, or slowly, or falling," said Mark Zuckerberg, speaking from Alpha Centauri, where he is currently exploring new markets for expansion. "The analysts said it was a clear sign of the beginning of the end, and I realized we could never afford that kind of uncertainty as long as I stood to make hundreds of billions on our IPO."

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Back in 2011, Facebook responded quickly to analyst concerns, within months implementing universal opt-out Facebook registration at birth. Privacy groups raised a chorus of objections, but the Zuckerberg apologized once and they were quickly silenced.

Now, the company faces a new raft of customer acquisition challenges, but Zuckerberg still has a few tricks up his sleeve. "We've invested heavily in gene therapy and artificial organs," he stated. "Every year we add to average life expectancy is another 100 million users."

"Those tactics might hold the wolves at bay for a little while," said the Forrester analyst, via a Facebook status update. "But what are they doing about global warming? If humanity ceases to exist, there's no way they'll make their Q3 numbers."

But Zuckerberg had an answer for that one, too. Just this morning, wholly owned subsidiary Zynga announced that they have obtained a patent for a technology to convert seawater to virtual water. "This technology is a lifesaver for heavily populated coastal areas," said Zynga CEO Mark Pincus, from his cage in Zuckerberg's basement. "From now on, we'll be able to optimize sea levels by siphoning off excess water to irrigate crops on Farmville."

In other news, Microsoft has renamed Skype "Mirror," confessing that 97.3% of people making Skype video calls are actually just staring at themselves.

7 comments about "In Clear Sign Of Trouble, Facebook Uniques Level Off At 7 Billion ".
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  1. Kevin Lee from Didit, June 17, 2011 at 12:39 p.m.

    Is it April 1st again?
    I hear that Martians and Pets (so far just dogs and cats) are being invited to join FB to get the unique numbers way over the population of humans.

  2. Bruce May from Bizperity, June 17, 2011 at 12:50 p.m.

    How we use social media continues to evolve. Facebook has a future if it can continue to lead with innovative services that keep us engaged. It's less about games and more about our addiction to utilizing social communications inside a common environment. The key is how friendly and useful that environment becomes moving forward. Facebook is on a tight wire now. We will see how well Mark Zuckerberg can maintain his balancing act (without abusing our sense of privacy too much). I expect the space to become fractured with niche networks but there will always be a need for a main street where we know we can always find our friends. A sustainable business model does not require infinite growth measured simply in terms of total users. Facebook just needs to maintain its central role as the main street of social networks and simultaneously develop meaningful strategies for monetizing the traffic.

  3. Cory Treffiletti from Voicea, June 17, 2011 at 1:05 p.m.

    That was an excellent post - if i had 7 billion people on my site, i would be worried too.

  4. Carl Ludewig from Ludewig Multimedia, Inc., June 17, 2011 at 1:08 p.m.

    Uh, the world population is 7 billion, so Facebook needs to expand to outside the solar system, I guess. But seriously, Facebook users tend not to create multiple accounts, unlike services like gmail. So you're really looking at being limited by the number of people + organizations in the world. Sounds to me like they've maxed out.

  5. Carl Ludewig from Ludewig Multimedia, Inc., June 17, 2011 at 1:16 p.m.

    Still trying to figure out the point of the humor here - we know everyone uses Facebook - the real question is growth as a business in terms of revenue, etc. If / when FB goes public we might get a clearer picture there.

  6. Christian Debaun from Search Mojo, June 17, 2011 at 2:20 p.m.

    Thanks for the good belly laugh Kaila, you made my Friday!

  7. Kathy Keating, June 17, 2011 at 7:09 p.m.

    Didn't you know that Facebook is now marketing to the Klingon empire???

    But really, this article is an example of how myoptic the media can get. We need to look past the numbers having to "constantly go up", and instead look at the per-user revenue that is getting created.

    And what ever happened to a company just making a healthy income, being able to serve their customers and employees and saying flat? This never-ending urge for our media to have companies constantly grow is aggravating. It's like if you don't have astronomical growth, you're falling part.

    Silly, just silly......

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