Things of note for the week ending October 17th, 2014.
1. Teens are NOT deserting Facebook (again)
Earlier this year, tired of all the ‘Oh no! Facebook is dying!’ trash that was flooding the news feeds, I wrote an article for The Drum entitled ‘Myths, Money, Mobile, and Teens: this is how we debunk the demise of Facebook‘. Eight months later and the counterpoints to the deafening waffle all still stand: Facebook isn’t going anywhere (and the kids aren’t either).
But that hasn’t stopped the headlines rolling in.
‘Teens are officially over Facebook’ states the headline from The Washington Post, with an almost deliberate yet understated finality. The source? A ‘dramatic new report’ from investment bank/research house, Piper Jaffray.
The article states:
“Between fall 2014 and spring 2014, when Piper Jaffray last conducted this survey, Facebook use among teenagers aged 13 to 19 plummeted from 72 percent to 45 percent. In other words, less than half of the teenagers surveyed said “yes” when asked if they use Facebook.”
And they’ve got this killer chart to back them up.
So it must be right, right?
The Washington Post fails to mention two key factors that make this report fairly meaningless.
Key Factor One: Only 7,200 US teens were surveyed.
Seven thousand two hundred teenagers. There are 1.19billion Facebook users, total. But let’s be fair, only 728million of those users visit the service every day. So basically, if you’re worried about the opinion of a potential 0.0001% of Facebook’s daily active users then you’re doing it wrong. To say that this is not representative data would be the understatement of the century.
Key Factor Two: Only 7,200 US teens were surveyed.
This is absolutely not the first time a US publication has cited US data as a global trend. But surely, what with Facebook having been founded in the good ol’ US of A, must obviously have the lion’s share of its users on its home turf, right? WRONG.
On Facebook’s very own company info page the following data point can be found:
“Approximately 81.7% of our daily active users are outside the US and Canada”
That’s an incredible stat. Less than 19% of all Facebook users reside in North America.
I ask you: how can a subset of a subset of a subset be anywhere near passing for the norm?
Here endeth the lesson.
A short one now. I like newsletters. This list of newsletters is a good list of newsletters to dive into if you like newsletters too. So y’know, go and like newsletter yourself nuts.
3. Bill the Billboard
Hand on heart, I saw (and loved) this work before I knew it was from Ogilvy. But seriously, this stuff is awesome. Ogilvy Nairobi decided to help Sprite launch a new kind of billboard. Bill the Billboard, in fact.
As Adweek put it:
If it’s more comedy you want from your billboard, Sprite is happy to oblige.
Ogilvy Kenya recently put up “Bill the Billboard” at a busy intersection in Nairobi, and programmed him to endlessly crack jokes. He’s sort of an outdoor version of the famous Pringles banner ad from 2009, offering seemingly stream-of-consciousness quips to keep viewers entertained.
The jokes aren’t exactly side-splitting, and the case study’s boast that Bill is the “first ad ever with mental issues” isn’t exactly P.C. But at least he’s a little different than your typical boring digital ad.
The video is gold.
4. Super Mario Bros 2
If you grew up in the 80s (like me) then you might be familiar with the Nintendo game, Super Mario Bros 2. If you are one of these people then you’ll know how wildly different the game was to its original counter-part. This article, ‘Four things I learnt while writing about SMB2‘, is a really interesting read.
If you’re not familiar with SMB2 it’s still, genuinely, a very good read.
Check it out.
5. Music Twitter Cards
They’re a thing.
Twitter introduces Audio Cards so you can listen to music directly from your timeline http://t.co/GApDczTXi7 (aka ‘Fancy Player Cards’)
— James Whatley (@Whatleydude) October 16, 2014
And they’re actually quite a good/nice/cool thing (David Guetta aside).
You click on a (soundcloud) link, the music opens, starts streaming, and then can be ‘docked’ so you can continue to scroll through Twitter while the music plays.
Reminds me a lot of how the YouTube app works on Android which in turn says to me that you could expect Twitter’s video cards to follow a similar set up in the very near future.
Bonuses this week:
- X-Men: Days of Future Past comes out soon and to celebrate Twentieth Century Fox are putting on an X-Men exhibition at the O2 in London. Including this massive 18ft tall Sentinel.
- Daredevil is coming to Netflix and da-a-a-mn it looks good.
- I’m not kidding, this might be most interesting thing of this entire post: The New York Times with this wonderful article, ‘Our understanding of Giraffes does not measure up‘. Go read it.