Is ‘The Social Network’ Causing Facebook Backlash? « The Blog of Matthew Loop

Is ‘The Social Network’ Causing Facebook Backlash?

Recently, “The Social Network” movie trailer has been rapidly sweeping all the major online and offline news outlets, getting massive airplay and generating tremendous buzz. It’s undoubtedly helped Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook’s founder) and the crew increase active membership, exposure and broaden the company’s global reach.

With more than 500 million members, Facebook, and the communication phenomena it helped create, is enjoying unparalleled social networking success even surpassing Google occasionally in website traffic.

It’s been estimated that the average user spends over 40 minutes per day on the Facebook alone! Many companies are feverishly banning employee access to the network since it’s such a time-suck.  Fifty percent of Facebook’s active users log on to Facebook in any given day and over three billion photos are uploaded monthly.

With the company’s massive growth in such a short period of time, it’s no wonder why Hollywood made a film about it. Just to be clear, though, the movie isn’t officially endorsed by Zuckerberg or Facebook. Here’s a quick look at the new trailer if you haven’t seen it already:

In lieu of the films release, what are your thoughts? Are you going to go check it out in the theater or do you think it’s over the top?

Will the Movie Cause Facebook Backlash Among Users?

A few days ago, I updated my status with the following little blurb, “Not going to be watching ‘The Social Network’ … It’s total Facebook overkill. Social media was more cool when it wasn’t cool.”

I realize that might sound reasonably harsh from someone that’s been immersed and closely involved with social networking since the beginning. I became an unbelievable success story and a known celebrity in a few different markets because of it.

However, just because I use, recommend Facebook, and teach marketing doesn’t mean I want to hear it’s name in every commercial. Sometimes too much is just too much! I’m sure a few of my marketing friends will disagree with that statement.

Don’t get me wrong, my business mind and income have enjoyed (and still do) what is happening but the other side of me is so over the pep-rally.

What do you think?

If this highly anticipated film does cause some current users to flake-off, it won’t be the first time. Facebook has definitely had its fair share of controversy. Recent causes for backlash have been:

1) Privacy issues (too many to name here)

2) Increasing message / profile / friend request spam

3) Diminishing user confidence and trust

4) Virtually non-existent support while treating users with disdain

On one side I feel that the movie and the four concerns I mentioned above may eventually lead to the numbing up of it’s users, causing them to seek their online social ‘fix’ elsewhere. If there’s one thing history tells us, it’s that internet users are fickle.

It’s been very annoying of late to get blasted with friend requests from MLM / network marketing spammers or the latest and greatest social media expert. When you accepted them, like clockwork they pummel your wall or Fan Page with CRAP + their website, then tag you unnecessarily in unrelated photos.

Not a good tactic at all for legitimately marketing your business and building rapport.

Acting like a selfish loser is a quick way to tarnish your brand and be blocked indefinitely by related “friends” you’re trying to connect with. I’m counting on Facebook’s filters to improve in order to prevent spam moving forward. If you recall, that was one of the main factors why Myspace declined in popularity.

I will say that Facebook has positioned well for the long term, though, unlike its predecessors. So, I’m not predicting a migration is going to happen in the next year by any means.

In fact, it’s a virtual MUST to have a strong and authority-like presence on the network in your local market or global niche if you want to dramatically grow your business using the web.

If you know you need help marketing and don’t have a Facebook strategy that’s generating the results you want in your business, you can get on the fast-track here.

Honestly, I still feel Facebook is very valuable for personal interaction with friends, business networking, and online lead generation. I’m also enthusiastic about their future and am hopeful they’ll listen more to their users regarding their needs, rather than just telling people to go somewhere else if they don’t like the policies.

QUESTION: Will you be watching ‘The Social Network?’

Leave a comment below and let everyone know your thoughts about whether it’s overkill or not. Also, make sure to share this post with your friends by clicking the Facebook like icon below along with the re-tweet button. Talk soon 😉

Related Blog Posts:

How to Get a Custom Facebook Vanity URL

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How to Use Facebook’s “Like” Feature

How to Promote your Facebook Fan Page

About the Author

Matthew Loop is an author, speaker, investor, philanthropist, and the highest paid social media revenue strategist in North America. He helps brands, startups, and small business owners multiply their influence, impact, and income by harnessing the power of the Internet. Since 2005 he’s trained over 21,000 clients in 25 countries. Millions have viewed his free business growth tutorials online. Connect with him on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.


12 Responses to “Is ‘The Social Network’ Causing Facebook Backlash?”

  1. Doug says:

    Matt, I will most likely not watch the film. I also have had may ill feelings about FB, mostly when I have seen who has invested in the company and through those channels, I see the malevolent side of FB. Just like the FourSquare marketing, there comes a time when the outside world knows too much about us, our activities, our interests, our spending habits, etc. It causes me to question our true purpose on this plane…to be a consumer ruled by what “they” want me to do and buy, or to follow my own path and make my own uninhibited decisions without being unconsciously influenced by the tools of persuasion to boost someone’s bottom line.

  2. Matthew Loop says:

    Very good points, Doug. It’s important to be careful about what information you place on Facebook, as everyone, including big brother, will have access.

  3. Viewcaster says:

    Everyone should simply remember that nothing you post on any digital media, whether social networking sites, blogs or even email is ever completely private.

    Especially with ole Zuck and crew handling your personal data!

  4. Hey Matthew,

    I believe the only way facebook will plummet is if users do find something else and facebook ruins it’s image, much like myspace did. So until then, I do believe it’s an unstoppable force. Can it be stopped? Probably. But will it? I don’t predict there’s anything coming up any time soon, unless people start blogging.

  5. Matthew Loop says:

    Jonathan… Facebook is paced for growth far beyond what it’s seen already and definitely is not stopping anytime soon. Their image has suffered a bit due to the four points I mentioned above but overall it’s minimally hurt their membership base. It will be interesting to see what happens if they keep having these issues come up on a bigger scale.

  6. D.L. says:

    I saw the movie and I really wasn’t going to see it initially. Frankly, I already had a negative opinion of Zuckerberg because of the stunts he pulled trying to sneak new Facebook features past all the users in a very underhanded way and not just once. Those features would have really screwed up user’s privacy and when he was forced to back off he was really arrogant about it. I’m really happy when someone is successful because when they are it usually means jobs for others, but I REALLY hate it when people become successful by using others or through dishonest means. ‘Cause when people find out about it it inevitably validates the common belief that you can only get rich by cheating and by using others, therefore all rich and successful people must be crooks. Even if only a fraction of the movie is true (and it is because there were at least two lawsuits settled) that’s plenty. Together with all the other things I knew about Zuckerberg it was enough for me to write a final post as I was leaving the theater, saying that I will be closing my Facebook account. And I did.

  7. Matthew Loop says:

    Thanks for sharing, DL. I’m not a fan of those who are “successful” because of being dishonest either. Given Facebook’s history, I wouldn’t be surprised if they’ve participated in other shenanigans…

  8. Michael says:

    The movie left me so upset about the way the CFO was treated that I deleted my facebook acount. My girlfriend asked why he was worth so much and I said it was because he had a good program at the right time. But if most users knew how he treated his original shareholders and tried to dilute them for spite they would not join the facebook.

  9. Matthew Loop says:

    Good point, Michael…

  10. Libardo says:

    No matter what is true or not in the movie, I have learned a lot from it

  11. Matt,
    You make great points about Facebook. If Mark Zuckerberg’s behavior is in question as well as others related to Facebook my question would be:

    Who would care if it weren’t for the popularity of FB and for the money related to it.

    Big corporations are always looking for ways to capitalize and make money. Take for instance Oakley Sunglasses and Northface “donating” to the minors trapped in the mine in Chili. Talk about “capitalizing”. Personally I think both companies are exploiting those minors, but probably no worse than the company they work for.

    Screwing people over in business (also known as screwing the little guy) is way too common for people to be up in arms over a movie (with plenty of Hollywood exaggeration). Wall Street bail out, corrupt politicians, etc., etc. People act arrogant even after they have been dragged through the mud. Human nature I suppose. But, quitting FB doesn’t protect your privacy, nor does it send a message. It merely cuts you off from the stream of information flow.

  12. …and your post back in February addressed the issue of jealousy in business related to Chiro’s slinging mud at you.

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