Teens are leaving Facebook in droves, according to a study done by GlobalWebIndex (GWI). This comprehensive social media study showed that at the beginning of 2013, Facebook had a drop of 29 percent among active teen users, and an 11 percent drop overall in 2013.
The reason for this decrease could simply be the availability of so many other social media platforms. Facebook was the first of its kind and it is what most people in their 20s, 30s and 40s (and up) are most familiar with, because it introduced us to the world of social media. Today, kids and teens enter a world full of social media options, and don’t see Facebook as their only choice.
Facebook and YouTube, the first social media giants, experienced a decline in active users. But other, newer social media platforms such as Instagram, and Reddit experienced their fastest growth in users in 2013. Instagram is a social media platform that revolves around artsy, filtered pictures, and Reddit allows users to submit photos and content and the readers vote the piece up or down, both offering features that Facebook does not.
Others attribute the decline in users to privacy risks, and Facebook’s tendency to be involved in drama such as cyber-bullying and online stalking. Some teens are saying that Facebook is too easy a platform for their parents to monitor them on. Studies suggest that teenagers are turning to apps such as WhatsApp, Wechat, and Snapchat, which are all mobile chat services where teens can text and send pictures to their friends for free without parental monitoring.
Facebook remains the leading social media platform, even with the decline in teenage users last year. With a social media platform, the user needs their friends to be a part of it and Facebook is still the leader in active users. But with some teenagers saying that they are embarrassed to be on Facebook, could the future of social media be turning away from our beloved Facebook?