Skip to main content

Don’t make me ROFL! Teens are losing interest in Facebook

bratty teenagersHidden away in Facebook’s 10-k report, as first noticed by The Verge, is the fact that its younger users – A.K.A teens – just aren’t using Facebook as often as they used to.

Here’s the specific nugget that Facebook tried to somewhat keep under wraps: 

“We believe that some of our users, particularly our younger users, are aware of and actively engaging with other products and services similar to, or as a substitute for, Facebook. For example, we believe that some of our users have reduced their engagement with Facebook in favor of increased engagement with other products and services such as Instagram. In the event that our users increasingly engage with other products and services, we may experience a decline in user engagement and our business could be harmed.”

Teenagers ride fads, but the nature of these momentary trends is the fact that eventually one replaces another. At the moment, apps like Tumblr, Instagram, and Snapchat are enjoying high use rates and success with the teenage market. Snapchat was even criticized for standing on the wayside as teenagers were finding value in the app to sext each other. Still, it remains popular.

Based on a small survey of 1,038 people run by Y Combinator partner Garry Tan, Tumblr was in fact found to be topping Facebook in usage among 13 to 18 year olds. Facebook came in second, with Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat trailing respectively.

A September 2012 report by Nielsen may shed some light on Facebook’s woes. 58 percent of 13 to 17 year old teens in the United States are smartphone owners, and that figure is bound to jump in the next several years. With an abundance of mobile apps at a finger’s reach, and enough social media related apps out there to concern parents, Facebook has a lot of competition and a smaller window for error.  

Facebook is playing the catch-up game. It hasn’t been shy to jump on board trends and launch its own clones of popular apps – as it did with Poke and Camera, and its additions to Messenger. But there’s something about an original that can’t be mimicked, and playing copycat is only going to get Facebook so far, especially with the fast-paced, mobile-addicted teen market. 

Francis Bea
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Francis got his first taste of the tech industry in a failed attempt at a startup during his time as a student at the…
Your Facebook account could get multiple profiles for different interests
The Facebook home page on a screen.

Facebook is testing a way to give its users more profiles per account, ostensibly to give users more opportunities for sharing posts and keeping up with the platform's content.

On Thursday, Bloomberg reported that Meta (Facebook's parent company) would begin experimenting with letting some Facebook users generate up to four other profiles in addition to their main account's profile.

Read more
Meta’s new AI research may boost translations on Facebook, Instagram
Image with languages displaying in front of a man on his laptop for Meta's 200 languages within a single AI model video.

Facebook's parent company, Meta, announced a new AI model today that can translate hundreds of languages, and its research is expected to help improve language translations on its social media apps, specifically Facebook and Instagram.

On Wednesday, Meta unveiled its new AI model, NLLB-200. NLLB stands for No Language Left Behind, which is a Meta project that endeavors to "develop high-quality machine translation capabilities for most of the world’s languages." The AI model that came from that project, NLLB-200, can translate 200 languages.

Read more
The new ways Meta will pay you to make content for Facebook and Instagram
facebook hacked

Creators on Facebook and Instagram will soon have more ways to generate revenue from their content.

On Tuesday, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg shared via a Facebook post (and in a series of comments on that post), a few updates on monetization for creators on Facebook and Instagram. These updates included expansions to existing monetization options, as well as a few new ways to make money.

Read more