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(MIT Technology Review)   Remember Friendster? Well, here is the digital autopsy of that social website dinosaur. Basically, every website dies....not every website truly lives   (technologyreview.com) divider line 38
    More: Interesting, Friendster, social networking service, topology, ETH Zurich, dinosaurs, design change  
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4265 clicks; posted to Geek » on 04 Mar 2013 at 4:39 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-04 03:05:30 PM
Even in death, 100% interchangeable with Orkut
 
2013-03-04 03:11:57 PM
FTFA: In July 2009, following some technical problems and a redesign, the site experienced a catastrophic decline in traffic as users fled to other networks such as Facebook. Friendster, as social network, simply curled up and died.

So, if you have a working website design and decide to up-end it without giving its users an ability to opt out, you could become as obsolete as Friendster.

I'M LOOKING AT *YOU*, PHOTOBUCKET
 
2013-03-04 03:16:56 PM
Autopsy? Archaeologists have been on top of this thing for years now! (pops)
 
2013-03-04 03:24:23 PM
Wow, amazing general analysis with nearly no facts or figures!
 
2013-03-04 03:57:03 PM
For me the beginning of the end was when I kept getting multiple friend requests from women from middle-eastern countries that had the exact same lovely look (it was the same photo) but curiously had different names.

The other thing that disturbed me was the obviously spam/scam e-mails that were attempting a sexual grift would invariably start off with something along the lines of "Hey sexy, I am so turned on by your profile pic."  That would have me all hot and bothered were it not for the fact that my profile pic was a baby chimp in overalls fishing off the end of a dock.

I did like that sometimes people would write cute typo-ridden and incredibly earnest messages about how they they wanted to be pen-pals.  It was a more innocent age.
 
2013-03-04 04:23:12 PM
this just in - myspace and geocities probably wont last much longer!!
 
2013-03-04 04:34:24 PM

brap: For me the beginning of the end was when I kept getting multiple friend requests from women from middle-eastern countries that had the exact same lovely look (it was the same photo) but curiously had different names.

The other thing that disturbed me was the obviously spam/scam e-mails that were attempting a sexual grift would invariably start off with something along the lines of "Hey sexy, I am so turned on by your profile pic."  That would have me all hot and bothered were it not for the fact that my profile pic was a baby chimp in overalls fishing off the end of a dock.

I did like that sometimes people would write cute typo-ridden and incredibly earnest messages about how they they wanted to be pen-pals.  It was a more innocent age.


As an individual with a dual baby chimp and fishing gear fetish, I'd like to remind you that maybe they were being honest.
 
2013-03-04 04:46:50 PM
Now that all the corporations think they can market through FB, can it finally die?
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2013-03-04 04:48:49 PM
What ever happened to that brand of shampoo for people who had only two friends?  Did it go the way of non-resilient friendster?
 
2013-03-04 04:54:42 PM
As an early beta tester for Friendster, I'm really getting a kick...

I ran away screaming shortly after as I'm allergic to engineering/marketing circle-jerks. I knew to get out when they started blocking non-human profile images.

Buh-bye.
 
2013-03-04 04:55:42 PM
I think the core of the article is as long as a user of site like Facebook has a critical mass of friends there and the mental / actual  cost of use is not high it will continue.
 
2013-03-04 05:10:57 PM
So...they didn't get over it?
 
2013-03-04 05:12:03 PM
I think the last time I was on Friendster was the day I joined.
 
2013-03-04 05:26:20 PM
If you go there now, a pop up lets you know you can sign up using Facebook.
 
2013-03-04 05:26:44 PM

JerkyMeat: Wow, amazing general analysis with nearly no facts or figures!


The twin insights of not enough friends on the network and not worth the time/energy were truly mind blowing.
 
2013-03-04 05:30:32 PM
Friendster really could've been Facebook.  Easy to use, nice, clean interface.  The beginning of the end was when it failed to upgrade/expand its servers to keep up with its exponential growth in new users.  I remember trying to see my friends list and could see images for only the first 20 friends, and everyone else after that would have broken picture images.  People got frustrated and left in droves, then it lost its critical mass.
 
2013-03-04 05:55:32 PM

ZAZ: What ever happened to that brand of shampoo for people who had only two friends?  Did it go the way of non-resilient friendster?


No, it went the way of Amway: "They'll tell two friends, and so on, and so on..."
 
2013-03-04 06:02:20 PM
Who cares what happened to Friendster in 2009?

Friendster died much much earlier that - at least 2005.  They went from being the clear leader of social media to being an afterthought when they mumbled to some industry folks that they were planning to charge for access.  (They never finalized a plan, but the media went nuts with the story, and the damage was done.)  MySpace started insisting that they would "always" be free, and people started running from Friendster in droves.  Shortly thereafter, Facebook cornered the college market, and the rest is history.

I can't believe anyone was still using Friendster in 2009.
 
2013-03-04 06:23:55 PM
"It started to suck so everybody left."

Great insight there, Dr. Temperance Brennan.
 
2013-03-04 07:32:24 PM

The Banana Thug: Easy to use, nice, clean interface.  The beginning of the end was when it failed to upgrade/expand its servers to keep up with its exponential growth in new users.


You may have dropped out before i did. The interface was clean when I first joined but by the time I left they had crammed in what seemed like a dozen different navigation bars. It was like a tween or senior citizen's computer after finding out about browser bars except they were stuck in all over page and in different directions. It became really difficult to do even simple things like read messages. I think they had several fighting information architects who each kept shoving their latest idea into the page instead of ever sitting back and taking a look at what had already been pushed in there.

The technical issues you mentioned were annoying but Myspace went through the same thing and they're doing alrig... oh yeah, you've got a point on that one.
 
2013-03-04 07:49:41 PM

unlikely: Even in death, 100% interchangeable with Orkut


Shh, Google doesn't want people in the US to remember that they had a social network before Google+.
 
2013-03-04 07:56:58 PM
I met my wife on Friendster!  I actually was good friends with two of her roommates in college, but we probably never said more than 5 words to each other.  A year or two later I came across her profile(phrasing) and we started chatting, got married 5 years later and will have been married 5 years in September.  Thank you Friendster for helping me meet the woman I get to disappoint for the rest of her life!

/sappy story bro
 
2013-03-04 07:58:05 PM
but not teh googlez.  i never want it to die

/ cause i have 50 shares
// bought @ 200
 
2013-03-04 08:13:44 PM
They say that when the costs-the time and effort-associated with being a member of a social network outweigh the benefits, then the conditions are ripe for a general exodus.


F*cebook that's you!
 
2013-03-04 11:19:16 PM
When corporate IT depts start putting Facebook on the ban list, it will die.
 
2013-03-04 11:27:07 PM

Kazaa: Who cares what happened to Friendster in 2009?

Friendster died much much earlier that - at least 2005.  They went from being the clear leader of social media to being an afterthought when they mumbled to some industry folks that they were planning to charge for access.  (They never finalized a plan, but the media went nuts with the story, and the damage was done.)  MySpace started insisting that they would "always" be free, and people started running from Friendster in droves.  Shortly thereafter, Facebook cornered the college market, and the rest is history.

I can't believe anyone was still using Friendster in 2009.


Me either.

My friends had to pull me by the freaking hair to sign up for Friendster, and damn near immediately after that everyone migrated to MySpace. IIRC at this point we all had Facebook, but that was kept for school-ish things.  So if you wanted to see the house shows going on for the weekend, MySpace was it.  For awhile.

Last time I logged into Myspace was to see photos of my friend's kid.  I haven't had any reason to log back into Friendster since I abandoned it... and 2003 sounds about right, actually.  Between 02 and 04 anyway.
 
2013-03-04 11:28:33 PM
Well while I was living in the Asia region, friendster was popular.  I signed on and after a couple of months it just got weird and it became a haven for malware and other malicious software.  So I stopped going back.
 
2013-03-04 11:54:22 PM
xanadian
So, if you have a working website design and decide to up-end it without giving its users an ability to opt out, you could become as obsolete as Friendster.

I'M LOOKING AT *YOU*, PHOTOBUCKET


If I'm not mistaken, webshots is another photo sharing site that recently committed suicide that way.
IIRC webshots didn't even migrate old pictures and didn't give users much time to move them themselves.

Those sites probably have a hard time with people now using Facebook for photo albums, twitter/instagram to quickly share snapshots, imgur for the quick hotlink (plus the social/community side spilling over from reddit) and photographers seem to prefer flickr. Add some tumblr into the mix and most of the ground seems to be covered.
So they desperately try to reposition or reinvent themselves and do it so poorly that they manage to piss off a good chunk of the users they have (had?) left.
 
2013-03-05 12:48:43 AM

Dialectic: They say that when the costs-the time and effort-associated with being a member of a social network outweigh the benefits, then the conditions are ripe for a general exodus.

F*cebook that's you!


HempHead: When corporate IT depts start putting Facebook on the ban list, it will die.


Yes, please continue to predict the demise of Facebook. I'm sure it will happen in your lifetime.

Although <b>HempHead</b> actually brings up an interesting point, which is that employers, for a whole host of reasons, risk alienating their younger employees by blocking social networking sites.
 
2013-03-05 12:59:51 AM

JerkyMeat: Wow, amazing general analysis with nearly no facts or figures!


What are you biatching about? There was a graph.
 
HBK
2013-03-05 02:41:23 AM

FishyFred: Dialectic: They say that when the costs-the time and effort-associated with being a member of a social network outweigh the benefits, then the conditions are ripe for a general exodus.

F*cebook that's you!

HempHead: When corporate IT depts start putting Facebook on the ban list, it will die.

Yes, please continue to predict the demise of Facebook. I'm sure it will happen in your lifetime.

Although <b>HempHead</b> actually brings up an interesting point, which is that employers, for a whole host of reasons, risk alienating their younger employees by blocking social networking sites.


Why bother with facebook on your work computer? I get it on my phone and would rather IT reports to management not show that I spent 16 hours a day on facebook because I forgot to close a window at the end of the night.
 
2013-03-05 03:14:40 AM

FishyFred: Dialectic: They say that when the costs-the time and effort-associated with being a member of a social network outweigh the benefits, then the conditions are ripe for a general exodus.

F*cebook that's you!

HempHead: When corporate IT depts start putting Facebook on the ban list, it will die.

Yes, please continue to predict the demise of Facebook. I'm sure it will happen in your lifetime.

Although <b>HempHead</b> actually brings up an interesting point, which is that employers, for a whole host of reasons, risk alienating their younger employees by blocking social networking sites.


I don't know. I started to see Myspace as stultifying and a shameful waste of time, plus everyone's farking profile page was headache-inducing. And it created Tila Tequila. So I abandoned my profile. Within 6 months, everyone I knew had done the same thing. Very few of the people who blew off myspace had only 2 "friends". Not even me. 3 months after that- same collection of people are on facebook. Fb has done some annoying things within the past year, at least one of which makes it harder to use. For me, it's close to a tipping point. The deciding factor would be if there's an alternative which appears to offer some sort of advantage over the network you're on now, and maybe an element of faddishness. The only thing saving facebook is probably that at the moment, Google+ doesn't seem like it sucks any less.
 
2013-03-05 04:05:44 AM

roc6783: So...they didn't get over it?


I came here to say this. Then I checked your account to see how old your account was, expecting to see 5-digits or something.  Instead I see it was created on that faithful day itself??

I kind of didn't get over it, I barely come here anymore.
 
2013-03-05 04:12:56 AM

HempHead: When corporate IT depts start putting Facebook on the ban list, it will die.


I'm seeing FaceBook bans being LIFTED in companies. If the boss has FaceBook, then FaceBook immediately becomes accessible.

//In a previous employer, I think it took a week for half of the morning shift to get fired for using FaceBook after the boss whitelisted it. She, of course, still spent 90% of the day on it.
///Because hypocrisy should be open and celebrated, I guess.
 
2013-03-05 04:38:49 AM

HempHead: When corporate IT depts start putting Facebook on the ban list, it will die.


As a veteran IT guy I'd like to mention it's the legal and/or HR department who impose the ban. Smart people often know how to proxy around content filters so I'd prefer a trust relationship with fellow employees to be reasonable.
 
2013-03-05 08:20:16 AM
I got really bored with the whole internet friend social network diaspora thing that happened every three years and dropped out after MySpace. I still have an Orkut account with a couple dozen Farkers on it that are probably dead by now. Hope this helps your convo.
 
2013-03-05 10:00:41 AM

pnjunction: roc6783: So...they didn't get over it?

I came here to say this. Then I checked your account to see how old your account was, expecting to see 5-digits or something.  Instead I see it was created on that faithful day itself??

I kind of didn't get over it, I barely come here anymore.


My account was created on the day of the redesign?  Huh, never realized that.  Also, I'd been lurking on and off since 2000ish, but never felt the need to post or submit any links.
 
2013-03-05 01:05:06 PM

FishyFred: Dialectic: They say that when the costs-the time and effort-associated with being a member of a social network outweigh the benefits, then the conditions are ripe for a general exodus.

F*cebook that's you!

HempHead: When corporate IT depts start putting Facebook on the ban list, it will die.

Yes, please continue to predict the demise of Facebook. I'm sure it will happen in your lifetime.

Although <b>HempHead</b> actually brings up an interesting point, which is that employers, for a whole host of reasons, risk alienating their younger employees by blocking social networking sites.


If you genuinely think Facebook will last more than 5 years [as top dog], much less more than someone's lifetime, you've got some serious reasoning deficiencies.
 
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