If you’ve been on Facebook, it’s extremely likely you’ve encountered advertisements almost anywhere in your feed – every few stories, the sidebar, or even in some videos. If you’ve been annoyed by this feature, the wait might not be too long – Facebook is apparently in talks to launch a “paid” Facebook that will have no advertisement. This will be a big break for the supposed “free” service, and a likely breather for those not comfortable with advertisements.
Bloomberg said this is likely due to the recent fallout courtesy of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, where information from Facebook has been mishandled by Cambridge Analytica staff. Interestingly, this is not the first time Mark Zuckerberg and his team has considered launching a paid version of the app. However, Facebook has now begun conducting its market research in a few weeks.
Always Free? Not Anymore, It Seems
This move from Zuckerberg and his team is a radical shift from the “It’s free and always will be” line that is always seen when new users are encouraged to make a Facebook account. This change however will meet the concerns of some users who aren’t keen on advertisements on the social media network, which is partly the provider of a bulk of Facebook’s entire revenue. Sadly, this is also one of the many reasons why users leave Facebook.
It can be remembered that ad revenues of Facebook increased to $40-billion, a whopping 47-percent increase from 2016. This makes ads comprise 98-percent of the social media network’s overall income.
Does Facebook ‘See’ Everything?
Unfortunately, user concerns have just increased over data mismanagement because of the Cambridge Analytical debacle, especially after it just retrieved information of at least 87-million users. It can be remembered that Facebook uses user data to make “informed” decisions towards advertisements tailored to the interests of its users.
The rumors towards a paid Facebook also came to light when Zuckerberg mentioned to United States senators that a Facebook version “that is free” will always be available. The declaration, albeit vague, seems as though it implies there will be a change towards the free status of Facebook as an app.
Facebook has also yet to make a full comment on the issue.
It can be remembered that Facebook was launched last 2004 by a young Mark Zuckerberg as a means for his fellow Harvard students and alumni to reconnect with one another. His roommates and fellow students Chris Hughes, Dustin Moskovitz, Andrew McCollum, and Eduardo Saverin were the ones that made the application with him.
In 2006, those who claim to be more than 13 can now create a Facebook account, although requirements may change depending on the location. Facebook has held its initial public offering last 2012 and has since then began selling part of its stock to the public. As of January 2018, Facebook now has 2.2-billion active users in a single month. Unfortunately, controversy has not left Facebook as some concerns over things such as user privacy, depictions of violence, hate speech, and fake news are still apparent.
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