Facebook lost almost 3 million users younger than 25 in 2017

Bill Rogers
February 15, 2018

Tumblr, Google+, Reddit, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Flickr, and other platforms now seem to be considered not only viable options in a personal social media arsenal, but also potential replacements for those that want those specific services and not a more comprehensive Facebook account. Before people start calling it the ultimate demise of Facebook, the social network now has more than 2 billion users around the world.

X This year, for the first time, less than half of USA internet users age 12 to 17 will use Facebook at least once per month, the eMarketer report said. In August, the research firm predicted that in 2017 the 12 to 17 age group would decline 3.4%.

It has now been revealed that eMarketer's estimates were too low, the reality of the situation is that Facebook's 12 to 17-year-old demographic declined by 9.9 percent in 2017, which amounts to approximately 1.4 million users. And that after years of Facebook's lack of privacy jeopardizing future jobs and college offers, teens are more interested in a platform like Snapchat where you can only ever be seen by people you've added and where postings disappear.

Facebook's growing reputation as a platform for older users may be another turn off for younger users.

While its domestic growth will slow to below 1%, Facebook is still on track to lead the pack in 2018 with 169.5 million domestic users.

More than 500,000 new over-55s are expected to sign up to Facebook in 2018, which will leave 6.4mln 55 to 65-year-olds on the platform - the second biggest demographic after 16 to 34-year-olds.

The number of Facebook users is supposed to reach 170 million people in the United States in 2018, a less than 1 percent increase from 2017, eMarketer reports.

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Content from friends is the default on Snapchat.

Nicola Mendelsohn, Facebook's vice-president for the EMEA region, said she actively limits the time her own children are allowed to use their phones. A Facebook spokesperson declined to comment on the firm's latest report.

The nature of Snapchat's design, however, defaults away from everyone seeing what users post.

"The question will be whether younger users will still find Snapchat cool if more of their parents and grandparents are on it".

Of course, "that's the predicament Facebook is in", Williamson notes.

The problem of privacy reared its head again on Monday as a German court ruled Facebook's default privacy setting and use of personal data are against consumer laws in the country.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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