Jenna Wortham writes in the New York Times that Facebook's momentum is slowing ahead of its IPO. Wortham argues that many are finding the inherent flaws in Facebook increasingly unappealing, and that avoidance of the social network is becoming the new thing to do for young people:
And whether there is haranguing involved or not, the rebels say their no-Facebook status tends to be a hot topic of conversation — much as a decision not to own a television might have been in an earlier media era.
This doesn't strike me as anything new, per se. People have been opting out of Facebook for years, and the noted avoidance today is certainly not surprising.
Furthermore, Facebook's growth is certain to slow somewhat on an annual basis purely because the number of candidates for membership is a finite number. Once a huge amount of people are on the site, you cannot expect the same explosive growth year after year.
Considering Facebook is notably refocusing on the mobile arena, the social network appears to be cognizant of the slowing growth, and is placing emphasis on keeping its current users entertained on the site. The longer the user stays on the site, the more ad impressions can be viewed. That would certainly not be a metric of failure, just increasing revenues
Although I wouldn't say I agree with all of what Facebook is, and intends to be, I wouldn't go as far as to imply that the social network is facing some sort of MySpace-esque exodus or rebellion. Facebook is enormous, and with its recent talent acquisitions, I cannot help but think something big is on the horizon for the company -- something not necessarily tied with its current social network offering.