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IP Communications: Facebook Challenges Google with 'Social Graph'

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December 14, 2010

IP Communications: Facebook Challenges Google with 'Social Graph'

By Ed Silverstein, TMCnet Contributor

Facebook is becoming quite the competitor to Google (News - Alert).

AFP news service reports – based on comScore (News - Alert) data – that even though Google has a larger number of unique monthly visitors than Facebook, visitors to Facebook spend more time on Facebook than they do on Google.

In addition, the Google search engine finds items through a user's Web history. On the other hand, Facebook (News - Alert) does searches based on the user’s "likes" and “recommendations” from friends on Facebook.

Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook founder, calls their method a "social graph.”

Zuckerberg explained the concept of a social graph, in a blog post from earlier this year, as, suppose someone “mapped out all the connections between people and the things they care about.” It “would form a graph that connects everyone together,” he said.

To make online experiences even more social, Facebook has “redesigned Facebook Platform to offer a simple set of tools that sites around the web can use to personalize experiences and build out the graph of connections people are making,” Zuckerberg added. “This next version of Facebook Platform puts people at the center of the web.”

The changes cannot be ignored.

Wedbush Securities Analyst, Lou Kerner, told AFP that, "Social media is an increasingly important part of how you reach people and it's a growing part of every marketer's budget.”

"The idea is you do not want to fight Facebook. You want to embrace Facebook and leverage Facebook because this is where people are going to spend increasing amounts of time," he said.

During this year, Facebook introduced many new features. They include: e-mail service, which competes with Google's Gmail. Facebook Questions, a search engine, which lets Facebook members pose questions to members and get answers.

In addition, Google increased salaries by 10 percent due to competition from Facebook.

In a related matter, TMCnet reported earlier this year that Facebook's ultimate goal could be the “complete absorption” of the Web.

“Tremendous adoption” of Facebook is the next step, said TMCnet.

Ed Silverstein is a TMCnet contributor. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Jaclyn Allard

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