Lately, a lot of reports, surveys and researches were claiming that Facebook was not so cool anymore. This being particularly true with the youngest generation or in other words the future users of the social media platform. The reason behind this growing lack of interest from teens is simply coming from what Facebook is all about: sharing, posting, connecting… All this was cool, few years back, when only a certain part of the population was using it to communicate. Nowadays, everyone has a Facebook account including the parents and sometimes even grand-parents who can easily keep an eye on their offsprings. In other words, Facebook has become a chaperone, a social media equivalent of chaperone. By being a constant open window Facebook has become the place NOT to be. The fun is somewhere else. It is somewhere where chaperones are not allowed. The fun is on alternative social media sites like Instagram, Snapchat, Vine and Tumblr.
In May 2013 a study from the Pew Research Center revealed teens are expressing “waning enthusiasm” for Facebook. According to the study, teens are tired of all the “drama”, the stress of managing their online reputation on the network, and are “annoyed when their Facebook friends share inane details”. The Pew report states: “While Facebook is still deeply integrated in teens’ everyday lives, it is sometimes seen as a utility and an obligation rather than an exciting new platform that teens can claim as their own.”
Teenagers are moving away from the social media giant and onto small niche social media apps which are ensuring more privacy and less chaperonage. Tumblr is a largely anonymous social network without any requirements for interaction. SnapChat is the new ephemeral and cool social media platform. What’s App allows its users to chat/text for free and it is completely hassle-free (no need to create an account, a phone number is enough).
This migration is not down to some mass exodus over NSA surveillance and big corporate brother. Teenagers are leaving Facebook altogether. To be even more concise, the research organizers claim: “What we’ve learned from working with 16-18 year olds in the UK is that Facebook is not just on the slide, it is basically dead and buried. Mostly they feel embarrassed even to be associated with it. Where once parents worried about their children joining Facebook, the children now say it is their family that insists they stay there to post about their lives. Parents have worked out how to use the site and see it as a way for the family to remain connected. In response, the young are moving on to cooler things.”
It just proves that the kids just want to be left alone and will find their very own privacy somewhere else.
The Drum – What’s going wrong with teenagers and Facebook:The Drum investigates why teenagers have fallen out of love with Facebook
The Drum – Study confirms Facebook is dead among UK teenagers