Tag Archives: facebook.com

Facebook Overtakes Google in Web Traffic

Yet another piece of evidence that Facebook is here to stay.

Check out this story from The Financial Times:

Social networking website Facebook has capped a year of phenomenal growth by overtaking Google’s popularity among US internet users, with industry data showing it has scored more visits on its home page than the search engine.

In a sign that the web is becoming more sociable than searchable, research firm Hitwise said that the two sites accounted for 14 per cent of all US internet visits last week. Facebook’s home page recorded 7.07 per cent of traffic and Google’s 7.03 per cent.

It is the first time that Facebook.com has enjoyed a weekly lead over Google.com. The lead may be slim, but it has become inevitable as Facebook’s popularity has grown rapidly from just over 2 per cent of visits a year ago. Heather Dougherty of Hitwise said that Facebook had “reached an important milestone” with the weekly figures.

Facebook’s membership has more than doubled in the past year, passing the 200m mark last April and 400m in February.

The article continues …

Facebook’s trajectory suggests that it will soar ahead of Google.com in the coming months. However, social networking sites have fallen in the past. Google.com had led since September 2007, when it overtook News Corp’s MySpace.com.

Internet users worldwide spent more than five-and-a-half hours a month on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter in December 2009, an 82 per cent increase over the previous year, according to the Nielsen Company research firm.

US users spent nearly six-and-a-half hours on Facebook compared with fewer than two-and-a-half hours on Google.

This article reinforces my belief about social networking.

Contrary to the view of some who view social networking as evil (for reasons that aren’t very good in my opinion), Facebook can be used as an avenue for building connections thereby making it a natural tool for ministry.

Facebook is here to stay, and technologically competent ministers ought to take advantage.

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Gross National Happiness According to Facebook

I just read a very interesting post on the Facebook blog.

Apparently for over a year social scientists have utilized computers to collect data from Facebook users’ status updates.

Here’s a quote from Facebook data team member Adam D. I. Kramer:

Every day, through Facebook status updates, people share how they feel with those who matter most in their lives. These updates are tiny windows into how people are doing. They’re brief, to the point, and descriptive of what’s going on this week, today or right now.

Grouped together, these updates are indicative of how we are collectively feeling. At Facebook, we’re always looking for ways to help people better understand the world around them, and we’re interested in how people express their emotions with one other and the world. So earlier this year, data scientists at Facebook started a project to measure the overall mood of people from the United States on Facebook, based on the sentiment expressed in status updates.

The result was and index that measures how happy people on Facebook are from day-to-day by looking at the number of positive and negative words they’re using when updating their status. When people in their status updates use more positive words—or fewer negative words—then that day as a whole is counted as happier than usual.

Though more countries or languages may be added later, the current result is notable since it is based on the updates of all English-speaking U.S. Facebook users. In this sense, it can count as an indicator of “Gross National Happiness,” a metric only measured currently via Gallup polls and national surveys in countries such as France and Bhutan. To protect your privacy, no one at Facebook actually reads the status updates in the process of doing this research; instead, our computers do the word counting after all personally identifiable information has been removed.

For our Gross National Happiness index, we adapted a collection of positive and negative emotion words built by social psychologists. Examples of positive or happy words include “happy,” “yay” and “awesome,” while negative, or unhappy words, include “sad,” “doubt” and “tragic.” We also did a brief survey of some Facebook users, which showed that people who use more positive words, relative to the number of negative words, reported higher satisfaction with their lives.


I wonder how long it will be before this tool is used as commonly as the Gallup polls (if it’s used at all).


Check out the rest of Adam’s post here;  play around with the Gross National Happiness Index here.

Easter is on of the happiest days of the year in English-speaking countries. 🙂

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