Facebook : The Future Is Now

I think it was around Thanksgiving when I overheard a group of teenagers in my local coffee shop ripping into Facebook. "It's just not cool anymore," one said. Everyone at the table seemed to share the sentiment. These words echoed what I'd hear at tech conferences, music events, social gatherings, etc. a few years ago with respect to MySpace. And look at what happened there.

I'm not saying that Facebook will suffer the same shelf-life as MySpace, because it won't. MySpace was a cluttered mess full of spam, widgets, impossible to load pages and just a clutter of junk. People grew tired. MySpace did little to correct the problems, and still hasn't. Even musicians, their supposed "bread and butter," are starting to remove their MySpace pages from album artwork and band sites.

Today, or maybe it was yesterday, Facebook rolled out another redesign. I mean, really? I can understand upgrades and such, something that MySpace didn't do and ultimately led to their demise, but the whole redesign concept is getting a little tired. How about some new offerings? How about clearer messaging on privacy concerns? Maybe some music? As far as I can tell, Facebook is now just Twitter on steroids. People read for status updates and then move on. Folks with children post shots of their kids that no one outside of immediate friends and family care about. Dare I say that Facebook is losing its edge? Well, it is. I haven't looked at the numbers, which can probably refute many claims here, but there are many signs that it's time to make a big move. I've worked at too many start-ups that held on while at a solid valuation, to see that valuations plummet almost overnight. Facebook is a monstrosity compared to the small companies I worked for, and although I'm not inside the walls, the signs seem to be there.

What was their latest valuation? Something around $9 billion. I mean, c'mon. Whatever the figure, just like MySpace and Friendster before it, there's a staleness developing and I'm not sure it's going away. It's really of no fault of Zuckerberg and the rest; it's just the way that things progress with social-networking services. There obviously isn't a company that I'm aware of that's ready to take the reigns, but there has to be something in the wings. And the majority of the companies right now that claim to be "the next big thing," well, just won't be. But Facebook's glory days may be coming to a peak. Time to make a move.