Social media and social networking have grown increasingly in number within recent years. The front-runner in the social networking world is Facebook. Most people you know probably has a Facebook account and continuously update their statuses and communicate with their friends from all over the world. With its current trend, Facebook is project to grow at exponential rate to over-take many other popular social media platform in other countries. Facebook is now internationally used, even in countries that block the social networking site. However, users still manages to over-ride this restriction by the government. Countries such as South Korea, Japan, and China have a large population of social media users. China has RenRen, South Korea has Cyworld, Japan has Mixi, and the US has Facebook, but it is projected that Facebook will soon take over the realm of social media in these countries and cause a decrease in those already existing social media websites. However, for Facebook to be widely adapted in these countries, mobile usage function and a user-friendly platform are needed.
A prime example, in South Korea the incumbent, long-running largest social network, has been seeing massive user migration to Facebook. Just in February 2012 alone, there was a 52.4% user reversal. For a foreign company and social networking site fairly new to South Korea, currently 1 out of every 5 Koreans are on Facebook and the 10 million users benchmark had been reached. Cyworld has been around for over 10 years in Korea through SK Telecom, the number one Korean mobile carrier with 52% of the market share. Cyworld could be said to have invited the Virtual Good market in South Korean with over 90% of the entire Korean population being active on the site. It is surprising that Cyworld is currently losing users to Facebook, a foreign company. South Korea is one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world and known to utilize “home grown” entities, it is interesting how Facebook has garnered so many users. This could be due to the widespread usage of smart-phones, such as iPhones, where Facebook is already built into the system. Perhaps, it is the international widespread appeal that lead South Koreans to switch over to Facebook, but one things is certain it trend is here to stay. There are now many functions on Facebook that enables its international expansion, such as language settings where Facebook can be displayed in a wide array of languages. Facebook isn’t just making wave in South Korea, but other technology giants in the world. I do believe that as Facebook expand in users, it will soon over shadow these foreign social networking sites in those countries like it did to Myspace in the US.
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