I just finished reading a book for my Mass Media and Communications class, Nick Bilton’s “I Live in the Future & Here’s How it Works.” In it, Bilton makes many accurate predictions about the future of technology including that Starbucks will develop a way for your local store to be notified of your order and when you will be there to pick it up (this will happen in the next several months). One of the things he continued to mention throughout the book really stuck with me. He predicted that Facebook will continue to be a staple news source into the advanced years of smart TVs, etc. he mentions this several times and it got me thinking about how much I actually use Facebook. Millennials are using Facebook less and less. With Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter along with several other means of social networking, the millennial generation relies far less on Facebook. I use myself and a few friends as examples that this is true. I check my Facebook news feed every other day or so. I rarely am on Facebook every single day and even more rare is a day when I check it several times a day. Several of my friends only use facebook as a digital photo album. Compared to the power of Facebook over millennials 5 years ago, it has declined in importance.
I suppose I am a bit unique because I am a millennial who would still prefer a phone call or an in person meeting over a facebook posting/message, a text or an email. But still, I once used Facebook more regularly. And the reason I lost interest in using Facebook more regularly is simply because most of my friends stopped using it. The same group of people on my friends list were always the only ones posting/updating. It has gone from a true social network for friends to gather online to a place of keeping in touch with family for me. The main reason I still have a Facebook account is because I have family out-of-state or that I do not see very often and Facebook allows me to keep in contact with them.
There are many studies on the millennial generation having shorter attention span, however I argue that society increasingly has a shorter attention span. Television shows hardly have a chance to succeed now. Everything is either recorded on a DVR, online, or on demand. People have lost time to watch TV when it is actually airing. Ultimately I believe that the millennial generation has grown bored with Facebook. I predict the same will happen to Twitter and I’m sure eventually Instagram as well. Living in a time when there is an updated version of a device every year, we constantly have this need to have whatever is NEW. Facebook is not new anymore.
I’m not saying Facebook is going away anytime soon. But as far as social networking for Millennials, it’s already a thing of the past.