back to article Nearly 2 MILLION US Facebook users quit social network

Shares in Facebook continued to slide on Tuesday, after an analyst claimed the dominant social network had seen a modest drop in its userbase. Capstone Investment's Rory Maher said Mark Zuckerberg's company suffered a 1.1 per cent fall in US users over the last six months. The number of European Facebookers had also declined, …


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  1. ravenviz Silver badge
    Thumb Up


    I for one welcomed the day I 'deactivated' my account. I felt quite liberated.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: facepest

      Deactivating is not the same as deleting. Deactivating allows you to reactivate it again by logging in again...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: facepest

        ..only if you log in within a certain period after deactivating. About 2 weeks?

      2. crisis

        Re: facepest

        I thought there was not option for deleting face book?

  2. Wibble

    Lies, damn lies...

    Rather than measuring accounts in terms of absolute numbers, it would be far more accurate to measure it in terms of account activity; numbers of accounts active on a daily basis; weekly; monthly; quarterly; dead; formerly active... etc.

    A lot like Hotmail et al measure their accounts.

    That way all the test accounts or one-off accounts could be eliminated. This utter tosh about 900M users is just that; tosh.


  3. localgeek
    Thumb Up

    You're Welcome, Mr. Zuckerberg

    I said goodbye over a month ago, and my daily distraction level has greatly decreased.

    1. Arctic fox

      @localgeek Re: "You're Welcome, Mr. Zuckerberg". I congratulate you and..............., I am in fact, not being sarky. I will however say that I am deeply delighted that my good lady and I were never tempted to have our daily distraction level increased to start with -:). Being part of the "Global Village" is one thing, being part of a poisonous and demanding "Global Gossip Shop" with its attendant security risks is quite another matter.

      1. elderlybloke

        Re: @localgeek "You're Welcome, Mr. Zuckerberg". I congratulate you and...............

        Arctic Fox,

        I am in complete agreement with your decision.

        Can't think of a greater time wasting occupation than spending time on Facebook.

    2. JDX Gold badge

      Re: You're Welcome, Mr. Zuckerberg

      Now you just need to leave this forum too.

  4. flawed_logic

    ...and the bubble starts to deflate

    Let's hope this over blown hot fart of a bubble continues on it downward trend and common sense prevails once more

    1. Tom 13

      Re: ...and the bubble starts to deflate

      Too late. Zuckerberger Meisterberger already got his money out. Bitch!

      1. LaeMing

        Re: Too late

        I think Mr Zuckerberger would disagree.

        His IPO was 'just right'.

    2. ACZ

      Re: ...and the bubble starts to deflate

      Hmmm... Eduardo Saverin's probably not too happy that the share price is still low and is under massive pressure ( - he'll presumably have to pay the IRS at some point.

      Facebook share price chart (year to date):

      1. h4rm0ny

        Re: ...and the bubble starts to deflate

        Actually although I predicted (along with a zillion other people) that Facebook would plummet, and it did, the slide seems to have arrested itself a bit whilst I thought it would just carry on sailing down. I can't really see why it's holding up around the upper $20's as it's P/E ration is currently 72.59 a rating that indicates that either it is insanely overvalued or there is going to be a truly staggering increase in revenue in the near future. As the latter looks pretty doubtful, we're left to conclude that it is massively overvalued.

        My guess as to why the bubble has yet to truly burst is that so many people and big players have sunk so much money into it which they would currently loose due to the big plunge downwards from the initial IPO, that no-one actually dares sell right now because they can't afford to write off the loss or their afraid that selling would turn a big loss into a catastrophic one as shareholders paniced and tried to offload.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Facebook didn't get back to you..

    They don't get back to many people about much. For a social network they're pretty unsociable..

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Let Twatter be next

    Is it Beer O'clock yet?

    1. ItsNotMe

      Re: Let Twatter be next

      +1 on that.

      If there is a God...they ALL will go away sooner than later.

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: Let Twatter be next

        What a lot of bitchy whining kids the El Reg anti-everything cohort are. You'd fit in great on FB.

  7. LordHighFixer

    The numbers are totally skewed

    I have had somewhere between 3 and 6 Facebook accounts over the years (currently none). And I am sure that they are all still counted in their number of total accounts. I doubt if even a quarter of their accounts are actually active in any way and far fewer are active on a regular basis.

  8. Derk

    Bye bye

    I said goodbye in January, don't miss it, just a distraction from doing real things.

    1. fandom

      Re: Bye bye

      Great things like posting here?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The novelty has started to wear off.

    The iPhone/pad will go the same way, once people actually realise just how shit it really is, or discover that their choices were poor to start with and better alternatives are available.

    (W O W, takes the general unwashed/thick public some time, doesn't it)

    1. Paul Docherty

      ... and that television box nonsense too - and the gramophone.

      Oi! Get off my lawn... etc.

      1. Benjamin 4

        TV - right there with FB

        And how often do you watch television (and I mean actually watch it, not just have it on while you pay attention to something else? TV is in decline, it has just taken a while.

        As is music. Very few people actually listen to music.

        My point is that all these once great things are relegated to second / third place and not the primary draws they once were!

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: TV - right there with FB

          "As is music. Very few people actually listen to music."

          You may be confused because you no longer see people with giant ghettoblasters on their shoulders and think that people have stopped listening to music. In fact, if you look around you will see probably around 40-50% of people in urban areas have the little devices in their ears pretty much any time they aren't required to talk to other people or focus on hard problems (and sometimes even then) - these are actually called "headphones" and deliver music directly to the ears.

          You're right about televison though. Amongst any generation currently under forty, it's really died off, largely replaced by other hobbies or the Internet.

        2. kyza

          Re: TV - right there with FB

          Watching broadcast TV in isolation (as in not doing something on a tablet at the same time) might be in decline, but people are still watching telly.

          'very few people actually listen to music'

          What? Eh? Are you one of those weird unfortunate people who can't unscramble music so only hear a succession of tones without any overall structure or context?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Wow, don't make yourself too obvious!

      You're only just adding to your fandroid troll tally points. Keep going.

      Anyway, Facebook will go boom as soon something else appears that's more friendly and basic.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fashionable to hate Facebook / two sides to a story

    I'm a 30-something with a busy IT worklife, busy evening life most of the time, wife keeps me busy out and about most weekends. I have a mix of family (who mostly live some distance away) and actual friends on my friends list, with a few good acquaintances I don't see regularly.

    Facebook works for me. I am closer to my family and friends as a result; they keep up with what I'm up to day to day, and vice versa. I don't get nonsense updates on my feed (see above re. lack of cretins), and it allows me to share opinions and have conversations. I still phone and visit people, of course, but with a busy life and distance to family, it allows me to maintain that connection much easier.

    I know it's fashionable to hate on Facebook, and sure, I don't like much of the corporation behind it, but with no alternative with a critical mass of members, it's useful and all we have at the moment.

    1. Piro Silver badge

      Re: Fashionable to hate Facebook / two sides to a story

      It's fashionable to hate Facebook now?

      Who would actually hate Facebook anyway? Surely they would just have slightly negative opinions or indifference.

      Unless Mark Zuckerberg had relations with their wife..

      1. The Baron
        Big Brother

        Re: Fashionable to hate Facebook / two sides to a story

        I hate Facebook.

        The reason for this hatred is Facebook's contempt for its own user base (the "product" it sells to its real "customers" - advertisers). This contempt is demonstrated through its continual and underhand privacy grabs, wilful ignorance of data protection laws, and cancerous need to embed itself throughout the entire web.

        Nonetheless, despite my hatred, I completely agree with the point the OP made, and indeed if you ignore Facebook's asshattery then it is a very useful tool in the situation described.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I hate facebook

          Spooky, I just realised you can replace the word facebook with google in your psot and it remains accurate!

    2. Arctic fox
      Thumb Up

      Re: "Fashionable to hate Facebook / two sides to a story" I will freely admit that my personal.. for FB is "ArseBook" which will give you some idea as to how I feel about it. However, I am sorry to see that a polite, friendly and rationally written post should be down-voted. I can only add an up-vote and say that I appreciate your contribution.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Fashionable to hate Facebook / two sides to a story" I will freely admit that my personal..

        @ Arctic fox - Indeed... I hate having to argue with people to defend Facebook when they say how shite it is because of all the crap people write, but it's just the medium. Get some new friends, maaaan!

        You don't hear people complaining about PAPER, because of all the hate the Daily Heil spouts on it.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    does the software only analyze served web pages?

    So how does the software measure access through Facebook apps on portable devices? I rarely use fb in a normal browser anymore, fb app is much easier.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The adverts have started to creep in and the annoyance factor is creeping up as a result.

    They've turned into another money grubbing, technology acquiring behemoth. Plus all the boring rumours of a Facebook phone *yawn*.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Do people actually use it seriously? I use it with a pseudonym to share silly quickmeme photos with colleagues and to check in to the workplace canteen, or to spoof my check in somewhere exotic. Thats pretty much how we all use it here. How it can be worth all that money, who knows

  14. Alan Brown Silver badge

    Facebook has adverts?

    I hadn't noticed. Thanks Adblock.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Facebook has adverts?

      It has "adverts" ... half of them are "like our page" crap for companies and products you have never heard of. The rest of the time its adverts for dating agencies and I've Aldo had adverts for dodgy Microsoft software, impotence pills and sex toys ..

      Its rather like having your spam folder displayed for you

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Facebook has adverts?

        I thought Aldo was a shoe shop - or did you mean Aldi?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The internet needs to be purged of AIDS.

  16. Tom Reg


    The article describes the stock owners as 'investors'. Would not 'gamblers' or 'suckers' be a more appropriate term?

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Facebook is all about the money...

    I don't do social media /at all/ for certain reasons but figured I might just as well get me a company account to put my business there and use it to share some common info every now and then.

    Well; the difference between facebook and, say, twitter is IMO shocking. Facebook only allows me to try and get others to subscribe (or like or whatever) my facebook page and that's roughly it. You can't use the common facebook features ("get a personal facebook account"), you can't even follow 'fellow' companies or people. All you can do is buy some "adcoins" (or whatever they're called) and advertise.

    Twitter otoh... I also don't really like Twitter that much but in comparison its a /truly/ social network. With my company account I can follow other companies and people, I can comment on other "tweets" and I can even easily send my own tweets out (like announcing work on the website for example). And by simply "going with the flow" you suddenly manage to get quite a few followers. Better yet; you also see visits on your website rise a bit.

    Now; I don't expect to get better sales or anything using social media but I do think its a nice way to interact with customers who also have a social media account. And getting your company name a little better known is always a pro of course. "Dangerous" (when many people don't like what you're saying they're basically not liking your company name) but that's the way the game is (and should!) be played. IMVHO.

    Twitter allows this, Facebook doesn't. Guess which one is my favourite ?

  18. Anonymous Coward

    Face Book?

    I had an account ONCE, many years ago... Total poison of a lying corporation managed by deceitful arseholes with scam artist privacy settings and controls - a total anal rape of the psyche - it was. Closed (???) the account down....

    5 or 6 years later, needed to contact an ex... could only find her on Facebook, and the NICE thing about anyone on FACEBOOK, is that you just can't contact them as is... Noooo you fucking well have to go get a Facebook account as well....

    Fuck that.... so I did.... and in the last 5 or 6 years, Corporation "Team Sleaze" now has their site geared up to be totally personally invasive and predatory and regular intrusions into your life on data mining expeditions...

    But the account that I set up was just an absolute minimum, say nothing, do nothing, give them nothing, reply to nothing, locked up account - I figured that it's there and it has it's uses - I just refuse to participate in the fucking bullshit that it is.

    "Facebook" - yeah yeah yeah - lets all anally gang rape each other - yeah yeah yeah "Facebook".

    Pffffff -

    1. Marvin O'Gravel Balloon Face

      Re: Face Book?

      If only the Queen knew what was happening to her English...

  19. IGnatius T Foobar

    facebook == high school drama

    Facebook has a tendency to turn people from all walks of life into spoiled whiny teenage drama queens. Sorry but I've already been to high school, I didn't like it the first time, and during the year or so that I was on Facebook I learned that I didn't like it the second time either. The sooner everyone abandons Facebook and gets on with their lives, the better off the world will be.

    And yes, it's only Facebook, not social networks in general. In particular, Google Plus seems to be where Facebook users go when they grow up.

  20. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart


    Farcebook introduce the "timeline" layout and people start leaving farcebook..... is it a coincidence??????

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Vatican City 0

    Not achieving much penetration in Vatican City?

    Would have thought there would be lots of users looking to embrace the younger generation.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Vatican City 0

      Maybe need to switch to the rhythm method?

    2. V 2

      Re: Vatican City 0

      "Not achieving much penetration in Vatican City?

      Would have thought there would be lots of users looking to embrace the younger generation"

      Very droll!

      Pirate icon? Just hover your mouse over it to see why...

  22. The Alpha Klutz

    what a surprise

    when people finally realise they are slaves they dont like it, so they quit. but there are two telescreen corporations, both run by the global government, so it doesn't matter which you defect to. by far the more powerful and ubiquitous is google who no longer hide that they are watching you on a second by second basis. now they just tell you and it like "click agree or we kick you out of the walled garden" except the walled garden is actually a walled prison, a prison inside a prison.

    but don't worry, you have been made to love your servitude.

  23. Richard Cartledge

    Capstone as in all seeing eye pyramid.

    Pft! They don't even bother to hide it.

  24. Eduard Coli
    Big Brother


    Those would be my accounts, perhaps I let them lapse.

    No worries, I'll get right to it and make some new accounts so we can all be "Friends" again.

  25. Local Group

    Facebook Anonymous

    Shall we meet again next Wednesday?

    Thank you one and all.

    Donuts and coffee at AC's.

  26. Homer 1


    Who needs Farcebook when we have El Reg?

    And, as a bonus, the general level of discourse here usually exceeds Farcebook's and Twatter's by a considerable margin.

    1. adrian sietsma

      Re: Meh

      "And, as a bonus, the general level of discourse here usually exceeds Farcebook's and Twatter's by a considerable margin."

      That means FB and TW must be REALLY inane : the general level of commentary on El Reg has definitely gone a long way downhill over the last 5-10 years, with a few honourable exceptions.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Living is also way over rated

    You social fadsters should off yourselves this weekend. Then I can start my global Soylent Green business.

  28. Homer 1

    Soylent Green?

    Isn't that the algae floaters one sees off the Isle of Wight?

    Anyway, if it ain't chocolate flavour, I ain't buyin'.

  29. Jeebus

    I do so love the people waiting to jump on those who don't use the site. Like a reverse snobbery, so very sad indeed.

    Do not use Facebook, left last year when they changed their terms, disagreed and left, and yes that does make me better than those still on the site.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      No it makes you a sanctimonious jerk.

      People aren't jumping on those who don't use the site; they're jumping on those who like to make a song and dance about how and why they're not using the site.

  30. JDX Gold badge

    Why is failure to grow a failure?

    They stopped growing because they got everyone* in the main countries they operate in. Why is holding steady at a billion users seen as a failure?

    *obviously not literally but if you look at a key target market like student/20s, they really don't have much left to aim for.

    1. JimmyPage Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: Why is failure to grow a failure?

      Why is holding steady at a billion users seen as a failure?

      Because for FB to deliver to those people who bought shares in it, it actually has to make more money than it spends over a sustained period of time. Up till now, all of FBs profits have been derived from the fact that there were X+y users now compared to a point in the past. And it's the "+y" that generated the income. By drawing in companies who spent money advertising.

      FBs business model is effectively a ponzi scheme. Very slick. Very popular. Highly visible. But very vulnerable to stagnation.

      I still think at some point, we are going to see a FB "premium" account. Doubtless slickly marketed. Probably starting out around $10/£10 per month. Maybe with a discount, if you get more "friends" to sign up. Alternatively, you will start seeing paid-for content creeping in. Maybe premium groups you need to pay (or subscribe) to join.

      Of course the one thing that many people *would* pay for is to lose the ads. But that wouldn't go down too well with the big companies paying (or in GMs case, not paying) to peddle their wares on FB.

      The move by FB to insist on real identities should have been a wake-up call.

      My main concern about FB as a non-FBer, is it's probably already possible to trawl FB, with it's users and friends, and pinpoint people who aren't on FB - and then profile them, based on the people they know who *do* use FB. I know my email address has been hoovered into FB when people I know have signed up. So FB knows I exist, who my friends are, and what they like. Imagine what this data is worth to a clever marketing company ?

  31. Gritzwally Philbin

    The Great Escape

    Got my info off of FB well over a year ago. Goodness they didn't make it easy!

    Had to start by shutting down all my friends, so nothing new could be added, then changing all my personal info to question marks.

    Let that sit for a few days so those changes could be floated across all their servers. Got back in and started deleting posts. Two pages worth a day, with three of four days between for the system to again, make the changes across their servers, and to give it time to pull up everything it could find.

    The best thing about that wall is that it is designed to show you all your comments on your page and the pages of those you've added ad friends as well. As you dig down and delete newer posts, it starts to scour through your friends' lists to find anything you've added and bring them up.

    The trick was to just *wait* and let the data - my data - come to me.

    Once I got to the point where I was deleting my comments on other people's pages, I knew I was close.

    It's those comments you make on *other* people's pages that keeps you in their system.

    Once I got everything, I logged out and waited a week to be certain. Sure enough it brought up a few more of the earliest posts I'd made to someone I hadn't even heard from in 4 years. Done.

    Once every post was cleared out, I then deleted all my friends (you have to do this last, or you won't be able to get at and remove the posts you've left on their pages) and waited.

    Two weeks later, I log in and it is showing me random names of people it *thinks* I might know, not one I actually do.

    BINGO! I'm now completely OUT of the system, and maintain the account in my name solely to check on the status of my 'ghost-writer' account, which I use to comment on various sites with.

    Have fun shilling my info to whomever you can, Mr. Zukerberg.


  32. Alan Brown Silver badge

    Facebook use

    Is only economically useful to Facebook if people don't have adblockers enabled.

    Of course they won't tell their investors or advertisers what kind of numbers are involved as it'd trash the stock price even further.

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