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Google vs Facebook In Social, Innovation, and Growth

     

engine

5:14 pm on Jan 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Video worth watching on Bloomberg TV

Google vs Facebook In Social, Innovation, and Growth [businessinsider.com]

Count Piper Jaffray tech analyst Gene Munster among the Facebook bulls. He just gave an interview to Bloomberg TV which must have made any Googlers listening cringe.

Google has given up on social. Facebook owns the social graph, Google can't replicate it, and that race is over.

Google is just going to continue improving search instead of trying to compete head-on with Facebook.

Facebook is the place in Silicon Valley where all the rockstars want to work. Facebook is Google five years ago, and Google is Microsoft. (Ouch!)

nomis5

8:17 pm on Jan 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Well, whoever Gene Munster is, he needs to understand that one key innovation can change things in six months. Probably it won't come from Google but, sure as eggs are eggs, Facebook's dominance will be challenged in the next few years.

And then Google will be Microsoft, Facebook will be Google and whoever will be top of the pile. That's life, no ouch about it, just the way things go. Hardly news.

mediasres

8:24 pm on Jan 5, 2011 (gmt 0)



The "social" war between Facebook and Google (and the ad dollars involved) really strikes me as the war between the "photographic" and the "lexical". Facebook wouldn't be what it is without the "face", and Google without the search term. Which of these are more social? The face one would have to say at first blush. But the face lacks depth and breadth of contextual communication. So FB is attempting to lexify (is that a word?) its database with interests and likes, and Google trying to find in-roads into human relationships (Places, email - already established). Facebook has one huge problem though, the "social" often has strong anti-commerce assumptions.

IanKelley

8:38 pm on Jan 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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tech analyst


Whenever I see the designation "_____ analyst" I always wonder, if you understand your chosen industry so well, why are you working for someone else? :-)

I do agree with a lot of what he's saying, Facebook is an impressive success and it's potential at this point is immeasurable.

But that is the only way you can compare them to Google 5 years ago.

Virtually everything online is social networking to some degree or another at this point, and many companies besides Facebook are innovating. Whereas 5 years ago, Google was the only company doing anything interesting or unique with search.

Because of that Google was able to create a product that stood out so dramatically it was a no brainer to use them and no one else for search.

In social networking there are so many different approaches that multiple major players can coexist. Facebook dominates in many ways but that doesn't stop Twitter and Foursquare from being successful.

Comparing Facebook and Google to Google and Microsoft is something you do purely because it makes a good sound bite.

It's true that Google stands no chance of competing with Facebook in generalized social networking any time soon. But Google is a search engine.

It would be like calling a popular FTP program a competitor to a popular email app.

True there's enough overlap between the two company's goals that, looking forward and trying to predict where things might go, you could guess that they will become direct competitors. But the internet is notoriously hard to predict long term.

It's safe to say that the majority of Facebookers also use Google search, and the reverse is (almost) as true. So no conflict yet.

Hugene

8:41 pm on Jan 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Man, media people will do anything to create news. The FB vs G vs M$ vs Apple is not fun at all. All I care about are the actual products.

BTW, considering that FB might be trying to avoid disclosing financial figures at all cost with the Goldman deal [wired.com] I would be a bit concerned if I am one of those FB investors.

Petrogold

9:22 pm on Jan 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I cannot understand what benefits FB bring other than faces to spam.
Due to recent stake by Golman satch could their value inflated, what is the best use of it in our daily life than to cloud photos and pictures? Google also came to help users in the name of friendly search. but they are so mean that users,publishers cannot do any test or experiment. Both are so money mongers.

maximillianos

1:40 am on Jan 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Investors appear to be buying visitors and pageviews. Not profits. They are banking that will come around.

We have seem this happen many times before.

brotherhood of LAN

4:33 am on Jan 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Google does have a 'social graph' of sorts, when considering the amalgamation of all the tracking data and user accounts they have, albeit most of it is not meant to be 'personally identifiable', unlike Facebook.

dhaliwal

1:34 pm on Jan 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Google has become Microsoft in many aspects, but even then, its still doing a lot in terms of innovation.

Go60Guy

6:09 pm on Jan 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Tangential to the topic, I look at Google and Facebook from the standpoint of where I can most effectively spend my time in developing sites. Facebook is designated as social media for the very reason that it's overriding purpose is to allow people to connect with friends and family. Sure, there's the possibility of making business connections, but, from what I can see, that's a miniscule portion of Facebook traffic.

So, if I'm endeavoring to sell a particular widget model, it's extremely doubtful that a Facebook, Farmville game player is going to have the slightest interest in what I'm selling. The much greater likelihood is that a motivated buyer will search Google, and, hopefully, find my site, resulting in a purchase.

I'm not suggesting that, in a rare instance, a Facebook devotee won't respond to my blandishments about the merits of that widget model. But I can't see where it would be worth the time and effort, unless I'm promoting something that has a social concept associated with it.

So, I see the two as presenting fundamentally different business models, Google, Bing and Yahoo being the obvious choices for what I'm seeking to accomplish.

moTi

7:00 pm on Jan 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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i think facebook will rather be the next yahoo. we will have to put up with their presence for a long time to come. with no sustainable business model and even when most users will have left long ago, they will still survive for years and years - because of all the stupid investor billions from the ipo waiting for a return that won't ever come.

trinorthlighting

3:50 pm on Jan 8, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Facebook can not even come close to Google as a money making machine. In the end google will still be there. I do feel bad for all those investors, they have yet to figure out they are going to lose money in investing in facebook.

bhonda

10:26 am on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Just another MySpace. Not to say what they've done is not impressive - they have done a brilliant job with this.

In a few years time, this exciting new thing will look old, and a lot of people won't touch it. An important step in the history of the web, but they'll be something that trumps it in the not too distant future.

At the moment though, hats off to Facebook. They are king of their hill today.

digitalv

2:21 pm on Jan 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Exactly, Facebook is a fad just like myspace was for a few years. Something better will come along. While marketers struggle to reach social media sites, the social media site that finally "wins" will be the one that most successfully keeps the marketers at bay. Myspace lost the race for that reason.

Right now, the current race winner is Facebook but with talks of an IPO and pressure from financial backers grows, Facebook - if they aren't careful - will start allowing more paid content, and that will lead to an exodus of users to the next social site that doesn't.

wheel

6:07 pm on Jan 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

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IIRC, there's some opensource projects going on right now as well. I think the idea is that you can setup a facebook-like community, independently. Then the communities can interact.

So I could set up a community like this for say engineers, and cater to them. Then buddy down the road sets up a community for grandparents. Our communities can interact and members can 'friend' each other, but I can tweak my instance to cater to engineers. Add in some competition to foster innovation, and this has some possibility of being a facebook killer.

If it does do that, there's a minimal possibility that the traffic could be monetized a bit better than facebook does.

seowe

4:37 pm on Jan 17, 2011 (gmt 0)



What about the IBM initiative with being able to understand not just what the words you are saying but also what they mean. Could IBM ever overtake Google?

azwebguy

2:55 am on Jan 18, 2011 (gmt 0)



True - in a couple more years goog may be down to 30% of the search at best - if you want a plumber, a lawyer or a dentist - why would anyone leave Facebook's trusted search to find one? FB will change the way we search once they get that dialed in - it will no longer be based on the metrics of keywords and PR but trust and community - I'm advising all my local clients to get over the curve and get in and go with it all the way. Hope we see another outside search engine with something really clean and original surface too - I think goog's dominance era is about over.

bhonda

8:35 am on Jan 18, 2011 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I'm loving the duality of opinions here (and elsewhere) about Facebook.

Either Facebook is changing the very foundations of the Internet, or it's a passing fad that will be dead and forgotten in no time at all.

It just amuses me!

Either way, I'm sure a lot can be learnt not only in the social-media domain, but also in general business. Anything that makes this sheer amount of money is either very clever, or very illegal.
 

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