Posted by: Rowan | December 8, 2008

Facebook democracy

A group has formed on Facebook called ‘The Facebook Blackout’ and so far it has just over a million members. Their stated aim was to get to a million, and boycott Facebook for a day on Dec 15 – one week away – and they got there. Fair enough!

Their beef seems to be with the Facebook administrators. I’m not exactly sure what it’s about; the group’s description [partially tidied up] says

Don’t you adminstrator[s] remember that we are the one[s] using facebook ??

but it doesn’t go into specific complaints. But who cares – some people are pissed off about something. Or want to exercise their right to protest … who knows? What I find interesting is the gross numbers.

Here’s the current stats on this group:

Joined 1,036,761
Declined 3,226,142
Maybe 1,134,677
Silent 2,352,328

Add them all up, and it makes 7,749,908 people. That’s a small country. Well, not all that small, actually – it’s almost twice the size of New Zealand.

And, for whatever reason, they’re voting on a referendum to send a snub to the Facebook administration.

So here’s the current state of the poll on snubbing the administration, from this small country:

Yes 13%
No 42%
Maybe 15%
Silent 30%

This pundit is predicting that the referendum will fail, and that the day will be carried by a minority-led coalition of the No’s and Don’t care’s.

And that all sides will justifiably claim victory. One million people are going to snub Facebook for a day to protest about something. And the rest of this small country will think wtf if a million people don’t log on to Facebook for a day. It will only mean that it runs faster for everyone else, but they’re free to make their point. Everybody wins.

I love democracy on the internet. I think I’ll sell up and move there.


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