Social networking giant Facebook has received much criticism over the past few years due to its decline of organic reach, affecting both companies and users. Unfortunately, things aren’t getting better - a recent study in March 2015 by Locowise revealed that a measly 2.6% of Facebook Page posts are seen organically by their fans.
Obviously Facebook’s organic reach decline can be partially attributed to the rise of its advertising platform, but it’s also the result of under-the-hood algorithm tweaks, many of which have gone unnoticed by the public until years later. For example, during one week in early 2012, the company intentionally injected a mix of positive and negative posts into more than 689,000 users’ news feeds to measure their emotional responses - all in the name of science. Are other social networks performing studies on users without their knowledge? Most likely.
Privacy is another issue that social networks face, and users are continuing to take notice. A recent study by the University of Pennsylvania found that more than 90% of all internet users are concerned about their privacy.
Why? Various leaks from NSA whistleblowers like Edward Snowden have revealed to the public that social networks often hand over users’ private data to the government. It also doesn’t help that many of the popular social networks keep your data even after you leave, delete your account or even worse, pass away.
With nearly a third of the world using social media on a regular basis, social media reach and privacy have become hot topics. What are you most concerned with on social media, and do you think needs to be done to have a more open and transparent experience?
For more statistics on and facts on the issue, take a look at the infographic below, which I created for Minds.