Not conspicuous enough! --> fail
Agree with your sentiments, Mark 85.
Ol' Touchi-Peters has made a logical error here in thinking that a social network is analagous to a country club and thus can charge the same for exclusivity. However, the situation is not the same, and not just for the reason that the article states (the physical facilities and well stocked bar).
The one overriding difference is that spending up big on country club membership/mega yacht/private jet/supercar is that people can see that you have indeed spent up big. Put it another way, spending $9000 on a social media membership that the hoi polloi cannot see is just not visible, it is not conspicuous consumption. And in these cases, conspicuous consumption is the whole point, with the emphasis on 'conspicuous'.
So its a fail...and to paraphrase F. Groucho Fitzgerrald, I won't belong to a club that would have me as a member...