Jessi Hempel 2011年09月26日


    眼下,Facebook已经占据了社交网络领域的支配地位,业界似乎鲜有竞争对手。今年6月,谷歌(Google)推出了新的社交产品——Google +。谷歌对其大肆吹捧,而该产品上市伊始就凝聚了数以百万计注册用户。不过三个月过去了,现在我们并不清楚到底有多少人还在坚持使用Google +。(谷歌最近向普通网民开放了Google +,希望能招揽到更多新用户。)Twitter虽然发展迅猛,但其业务过于局限而且还面临着重大高层变动。至于MySpace,事实上已经完蛋了。




    也许这就是为什么尽管信徒数量一直在增加,扎克伯格却努力变得谦虚谨慎一点。今年的大会,他邀请了《周六夜现场》(Saturday Night Live)的明星安迪•萨姆博格来调侃自己。萨姆博格笑问:“Facebook究竟有多少用户?应该要比自称发明了Facebook的人多吧。”扎克伯格显然在自我解嘲。那一刻,大家都由衷地笑了。


    At the moment, it would seem there's not much competition over who gets to control (and make money from) all of this sharing and connecting. In June, Google (GOOG) launched its new social product, Google+, to great fanfare and attracted tens of millions of sign-ups right away, but three months after launch it's not clear people are actually using it. (The company just recently opened Google+ to the wider public, hoping for a surge of new users.) Twitter is growing fast, but its scope is more limited and it has had considerable organizational challenges. MySpace is, well, dead.

    What's more, as sharing becomes the dominant paradigm for how information is discovered and passed on, augmenting and in some cases replacing traditional search, web sites that choose not to integrate with Facebook increasingly occupy overlooked corners of a shadow web. Those that embrace these tools early can gain competitive advantage; the lucky few that develop alongside the company as launch partners receive huge boosts. Daniel Ek, CEO of Spotify, took the stage alongside Zuckerberg to show off the music service's new super ap. The bullet points above his head read, "More music, more variety, twice as likely to pay."

    As the web expands beyond our computers, this puts Facebook everywhere -- as the dominant interface to our lives. As CEO of large digital ad agency AKQA with clients like Audi and Nike (NKE), Tom Bedecarre is thinking about a future in which Facebook is available on our TV sets and in our cars (voice-activated, of course). Says Bedecarrre, "For large marketers, Facebook is becoming the web."

    But it's not a given that the web belongs to Facebook. These new changes are significant enough that they are sure to inspire intense reactions from users who may feel overexposed or simply overwhelmed by so much change. (Recent incremental changes to the site's interface have already significantly changed the way the site looks.) The potential for competition isn't limited to large social properties -- any fast growing web property poses a threat. And that's if Washington doesn't step in at some point over privacy or concerns about competitiveness.

    Maybe that's why, as Zuckerberg's audience grows, he makes more of an attempt at humility. He began this year's event by inviting Saturday Night Live Star Andy Samberg up to make fun of him. "How many users does Facebook have?" Samberg joked. "Even more people than claim they invented Facebook." It was self-deprecating. It was funny. For a moment.

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