I’m going to move this to the sidebar, but thought I’d test the code here. This is where something like Shelfari provides something I really want–and would, in fact, pay for. I don’t want another social networking site, but I like the tools.
Facebook, by the way, is struggling to find the right business model, according to this Newsweek article and plenty of other commentary: “Facebookâ€™s Roar Becomes a Meow.”
Facebook insists that “social graphs” (relationships among members) hold tremendous value for advertisers. But unlocking that value requires advertisers to dream up new ways of interacting with customersâ€”basically, to invent a new kind of advertising. Even Facebook has no idea what will work. Its first big attempt at new-age advertising, a system called Beacon, tracked what Facebook members did on other Web sites and told their friends about it, enabling a form of word-of-mouth advertising. But users freaked out over privacy concerns, and advertisers backed away last fall. The Beacon fiasco points out a fundamental weakness in Facebook’s business model, which is that Facebook’s ability to make money is determined by the degree to which its users will allow themselves to be exploited. Show too many annoying ads, or send ads that are so personally targeted that they’re creepy, and you’ll drive members away.