News flash: Facebook is for fun!

by Mathew on May 2, 2008 · 5 comments

With all due respect to my friend Kara Swisher over at All Things D, the news that Facebook apps are mostly designed for fun and games isn’t (I would respectfully submit) going to set the world on fire by any means. I think it’s great that Nathan from Flowing Data produced the chart that he did, and it looks really sharp and everything, but I don’t think it tells us a whole lot. Is it really a surprise that the vast majority of Facebook’s 23,000 applications are designed to be time-wasters or (at most) goofy brain-teasers like Super Pokes and Zombies and whatnot?

I know that this is supposed to show that Facebook is primarily a giant playground for overgrown toddlers, and therefore either a) a big joke, and/or b) not a real business, and/or c) not worth anything even close to $15-billion. I mean, let’s get serious — is anyone going to argue that a real business could be based on playing games, or that such a business could be worth billions of dollars? After all, nothing like that has ever happened before, right? It’s just not possible.

Just because most of the apps are aimed at fun doesn’t mean the platform itself doesn’t have value — potentially lots of value (although maybe not $15-billion). And don’t marketers and businesses use fun in various forms to sell things? I’m pretty sure they do.

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