Saturday, February 10, 2007

Barak Obama

His group on facebook has 249,128 members. That's an awful lot of people to have to hand. The discussion board for his group has over 1000 discussions and has only been recently started. Makes me laugh to think that we're trying to use online techniques such as this in the UK, when you think of the difference in engagement.

A few obvious observations.

(i) the u.s. is rather larger than the uk so a bigger raw number of group members would be expected.

(ii) the presidential race (even one which isn't happening ntil next year) is slightly more important than, say, who is going to be the next deputy of the labour party.

(iii) having a substantial number of people in a group helps to sustain that group and increase numbers further. think about it. I post on the board of a group with 100000 members. somebody will reply. logically, the more members a group has, the stuff gets posted and the more people respond, thus creating the image of a vibrant and popular group, thus attracting more members.

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Anonymous Jag Singh said...

A couple of points to add:

1) Facebook has only recently become popular in the UK.

2) Facebook in the US has a strong grip on university kids (there are lots of them to begin with, when compared to the UK uni populations) - many of whom have nothing better to do than spend three to four hours online ON FACEBOOK every day. Actually, it's part of the socialization process in most American collegges. I can speak from experience, as a now-in-recovery "Facebook-whore." Seriously - there was a point in time where if you didn't have more than 400 friends on your list, you weren't invited to any big frat parties.

I think Obama's momentum should only be compared to the 1996/97 Blair-fever. If you really want to run an apples-for-apples comparison of the Labour Deputy Leadership Election, try looking for Facebook or MySpace groups that revolved around the Steny Hoyer vs. John Murtha (House Majority Leader) race . Zilch, if not a handful.


2/11/2007 3:18 PM  
Anonymous leon said...

I'll be interesting to see if Facebook takes off over here like MySpace. Personally I hope so, it's a much better social networking site and aint deluged with crappy ads like MS...

2/12/2007 10:48 AM  

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