Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Philippines is the Social networking capital in the world

When it comes to using social media platform and texting, nothing beats the abilities of Filipinos. After being named in 2009 as the texting capital in the world, Philippines bagged another accolade of being the social networking capital in the world for 2011. Can we take some pride with this recognition or be ashamed because it means we have nothing better to do than chat and text. 

Recently, while researching useful topics to write a post update for my global affairs blog, I came across with this article from 247wallst.com about the top ten countries where Facebook and other social networking sites ruled the internet, and well, not surprisingly, Philippines made it to the top. At first, I wanted to cringe in embarrassment because it might sound bad and nasty to the consciousness of the people from "progressive" nations (they might think Pinoys are regressive and lazy), but anyway, I just think the other way around, something positive, like, uhmmm, feel proud that most Filipinos are internet savvy, after all.

But what amazes me is the fact that most of the countries in the top ten list which love to "socialize" online, are third world countries, so meaning people from economically battered countries are diverting their attention to socializing and texting to forget the harsh realities of life? Progressive countries (USA, UK, Japan, etc) with higher GDPs (gross domestic product) are not into social networking. China's exclusion (despite having more than one billion population) in the list is not surprising because the country had blocked Facebook and other social networking sites (despite the fact that the girlfriend and live-in partner of Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, Priscella Chan is Chinese).

The Top Ten Countries where Facebook rules the internet:

Country
Continent
Internet Use
Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn






Philippines
Asia
29.7%
93.9%
16.1%
1.9%
Israel
Asia
71.6%
91.0%
5.0%
6.4%
Turkey
Asia
45%
90.9%
16.6%
3.4%
Chile
South America
50%
90.2%
14.3%
5.9%
Argentina
South America
64.4%
89.2%
18.0%
6.4%
Malaysia
Asia
64.6%
88.4%
10.8%
2.9%
Indonesia
Asia
12.3%
87.5%
22.0%
1.3%
Peru
South America
27%
87.2%
12.5%
4.6%
Colombia
South America
48.7%
86.9%
14.6%
3.3%
Venezuela
South America
37.2%
86.2%
21.0%
3.2%

In the Philippines, social networking sites' penetration is incredibly high. What does it tells us? Is this information means that Filipinos loved to socialize? or simply loved "tsismis" (gossip) and relaxation. Facebook rules the lives of most of the people in Asia and South America, so there's a huge social networking market in these regions, if you are a software developer, you might as well think of creating another social networking site targeting these continents and compete against Facebook. Okay, so there are only 6.1% of Filipinos who are not yet on Facebook, wondering when they will register so that we can have a perfect score.

Seriously speaking---so why Facebook's penetration is high among these "developing" nations? There might be an obvious explanation to that. 

Facebook came quite late in developing countries and it was introduced during the time when social networking sites' popularity was at its peak in these regions. In the Philippines for example, Friendster and Myspace had spread its magic and wonders like newly created space shuttles ready to take the people into the other dimension of life. But the features were not suited to the attitude and orientation of Pinoys who are "friendly" and who love to hang around and make "usyoso" with friends and neighbors. Now comes, Facebook with its rejuvinated features of allowing people to interact directly plus cute features like games and "LIKE" button, etc.

So as Facebook started picking its speed and popularity in western countries, Asians, especially Filipinos, also became disillusioned with the undesirable and less-than attractive features of other SNW sites, so when FB invaded the Philippine landscape, everyone was delighted. 


Soon, Pinoys discovered the joy and excitement of internet games and very much thrilled to find out that it is possible to shout something in the front page which spawns quick reactions from curious individuals. 


Users who have someone new and seem madly in love (at the moment, because  the "sparks" are currently twinkling) are ecstatic to find out that it is possible to shout to the world that they are "In a Relationship" ...


...And the rest is history.

Facebook's features are not suited to the lifestyle of the people in the western world. They hate to share private information, they detest to be monitored by other people, they simply valued their privacy, so as years gone by, its popularity in developed countries diminished. But not in the third world countries especially in the Philippines and South America. Facebook in these regions is just beginning to gain momentum and popularity, there's no disillusionment yet as the magic is still there. 

But when it comes to cities with the most number of Facebook users, none of the cities in the Philippines topped the list. Here are the Top Ten Cities in the world with the most number of FB users:


In a report published by Facebook regarding its Top Ten Countries with the most number of users, Philippines ranked number five, so now, it's a big question why none of the country's cities were included in the list. 

Well, here is an obvious reason.......

Most Filipinos never divulged their real address or city of origin, most of them just invented their whereabouts (even names), thus, failing to be validated by Facebook monitoring board. 


Ayan di kasi honest!hehehe

Sources of this information and figures:

Asiancorrespondent.com
247wallst.com




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