7 reasons why Facebook can never replace Twitter

A little bit about me.I was an early user of Twitter. Joined back in November 2006. Was one of the first 100 to Instagram. Have 7 million adherents on Google+ andnow am one of the top tech futurists on Facebook, where I publish tons of info about the tech industry to more than 650,000 fans.

On Friday Facebook turned on a new notes feature that manymyself includedsaw as a direct attack on Medium.( Vadim Lavrusik posted his own Note to show it off .) Keep in mind this is my first note on Medium, but have been reading thousands of articles here for the past few years.

About six weeks ago a Facebook exec asked me, How can we get more journalists to move from Twitter? Its something Ive thought about a lot. Its one of the reasons Twitter still is magical, after all these years, and after years of managerial abuse.( Why can VW find a new CEO in less than 72 hours, but so far Twitter hasnt found one after 100 days ?)

If you merely do a cursory look at my Facebook account you might not realize whats going on there. But I moved my life over to Facebook after I realized that the audiences I wanted to reach( tech executives and developers who are building companies) had largely moved there. I dont care about having the biggest audiences. I leave that to the news organizations. But I analyse where specific communities are and work to build them there.

When I speak( like I did to a group of business executives in Brazil last week ), I ask people what social networks they are on. Worldwide my audiences break down as 95 percent Facebook, 70 percent Twitter, 45 percent LinkedIn, and only 2 percent Google+( and while children are on Instagram and Snapchat, those two dont register for the kinds of business and innovation journalism I do ). But when I look at engagement, Facebook becomes far more important.

So, you might think this is an ad for Facebook, right? It sort of is, except for the fact that journalists, rich person, and celebrities still are supporting Twitter and, I believe, safely into the future.

In discussing this with other journalists and rich person, I guess I understand why. Here are some reasons 😛 TAGEND

1) The friending model works for everyday people but sucks for celebrities.

Look at my account:

Robert Scoble

Facebooks friending model is different from Twitters follow only model. There you choose to follow celebrities and rich person. They dont need to answer thousands of friend petitions. But its worse than that. Friending has social proof. Can cause major drama why did you friend Joe but you didnt friend me? And, worse, can uncover business confederations or potential mergers or business deals. Ultimately, I get at least two people begging me to be friends every day. I cant imagine how many Mark Zuckerberg gets.

2) Facebook is filtered.

And, lets be honest, it often filters out rich peoples content. Why? Their content is usually pretty lame. Often its photos of them on some beach somewhere without commentary. Even Zuckerbergs posts dont give you much insight into his life, reasoning, or insights. Yesterday he posted a photo of himself speaking in front of the U.N. with scarcely any commentary or thinking.

What happens when people get filtered? They feel bad about themselves. Be honest: Dont you feel bad if you post a post and get zero likes? Now compare if you get 1,000 or more likes? These rich person are used to get 1,000 or more likes just for breathing. Look at Taylor Swift, for an example 😛 TAGEND

Taylor Swift/ Facebook

375, 000 likes just for a photo. Let me assure you I dont get that. But what if Facebook filtered that out? Didnt distribute it? Celebrities dread having their social proof cut away, and love Twitters everything will always be distributed approach.

3) The curse of engagement on Facebook.

Now, most of you might suppose engagement( er, liking and commenting) is a good thing. But its not. Particularly if you are a rich person who would rather take your private airplane to Bali and run instead of spending all day responding to people.

Most of the rich/ celebrity types are NOT like Gary Vaynerchuk. He enjoys kissing newborns and responding to comments. But then hes a hustler. Most rich people dont need to hustle anymore. They merely want you to listen and dont care if you engage.

I engage on more people stuff on Facebook than most people. Its what I do the working day long( and much of the night, too ). Why? Well, for one, I want to build a community of tech passionate people who are building companies and new technologies. Thats my job. My boss at Rackspace( a sizable cloud computing company with about 300,000 customers, everyone from TED to Oakley) asks me go and be helpful. I do that by visiting the coolest tech startups around the world( and once in a while an R& D laboratory or an innovative bigger company ).

Read my newsletter from last weekto get a sense of what I do.

For most rich/ celebrity/ journalist types they just dont have time to deal with all the comments. Twitter is a far better model for them. Why? Because adherents of an account, like, tell, Salesforces CEO, Marc Benioff, dont ensure all the answers unless they run go looking for them. And even then it isnt the same as over on Facebook where you can see how good someone is at responding to comments.

Plus, on Facebook you MUST get engagement to get through the filters. So most celebrities and rich people avoid the whole mess wholly. Even Marc Andreessen, who is on Facebooks board, only posts on Twitter and ignores Facebook.

Facebook tells me many celebrities avoid some of these problems by merely having a Facebook page, which cant be friended, etc, but those pages are filtered more aggressively.

4) Twitter lets you have your brand.

On Twitter you can call yourself whatever you like. Over on Facebook you are supposed to use your real name( and people continue getting kicked off for not using their legal name ). So, where does Prince, Lady Gaga, or Madonna run? Well , now, “they il be” such huge brands already that Facebook dedicates them a pass. But many people want to use a different name than their legal name, including many journalists and rich people.

Also, on Twitter, you get a nice short identifier. Mine is @Scobleizer. Now, quick, explain to someone how to detect you on Facebook. Um, go to Facebook.com and search for Robert Scoble. Not quite the same, and when you only get two minutes on Tv every week its merely easier to say follow me on Twitter @ scobleizer.

5) Search actually works on Twitter.

I still remember the night when I was the first American to tell someone else about the Chinese earthquake. I saw someone tell earthquake on Twitter. Started doing a search, received several others, thousands of miles apart, and then announced to my adherents there was just a huge earthquake in China. We beat CNN that night by 45 minutes. Now, are you able do the same on Facebook? Sort of. But many people keep their posts private. Its hard to use search there. Most people dont know it exists.

When you do try a search over on Facebook, you dont ensure content outcomes, but a lot of other stuff, from sports teams to comedians.

Robert Scoble

When you do the same search on Twitter, ALL you see is content outcomes with the word earthquake in their own homes. Now, yes, you could click the top thing on Facebook and get the same, but it isnt a real-time outcome, and it isnt easy for most people to do or understand, and even then, most people believe everything on Facebook is filtered( its not, only the main feed is ).

6) Twitter is real time.

On my screen Tweets flow down the screen within seconds of them being attained. Facebook doesnt do that. In a real-time news event, like what happened at VW last week, where the story was changing nearly every minute with new people resigning/ get fired and new reports came to see you, its a lot easier to follow and interact with the story on Twitter than on Facebook.

Facebook CAN BE real period, but it doesnt flow down the screen like the Mac Twitter app does( you have to freshen) and Facebook requires you to really know how to use it( listings, for example, are real period ). I especially lovethis list on Facebook by tech journalists, for example, but most people dont employ listings so dont know about that.

7) Twitter isnt as elitist, especially when it comes to live video.

On Twitter you are able to pop open Periscope( which is owned by Twitter) and live broadcast video. I have the same kind of thing on Facebook, but Facebook, because its scared of noise hitting the feed, has only attained that feature available to confirmed celebrities. Heres the rub, though. If you are the only one to get a feature and no one else has it, it makes everyone feel bad.

When I use Facebook Live, invariably Ill get a question about when its coming for everyone else and often theres a you are an elitist douchebag kind of commentary for using it instead of using Periscope.

What about Medium?

So , now, we get to the new Facebook Notes feature.

Thats quite nice. Looks awesome, like Medium, but Medium has a much better interaction model for journalists and celebrities. Commentaries are left right next to the content itself and there isnt an affordance for the crazy Reddit-style crazy mob commenting that often happens on Facebook. Just go to Mark Zuckerbergs Facebook page and look at the comments there. Very low quality generally. Facebook is trying to improve them by surfacing comments from verified celebrities, or those that get higher numbers of likes, but, still, its a mess compared to any post on Medium Ive seen.

Why is Medium better?

Medium only has longer pieces( er , no cat photos, selfies, or memes ). On Facebook the bias is to provide a link out to longer pieces somewhere else, along with a very short description. Theres a LOT of noise to excavate through on Facebook, even for those of us who have trained our feeds to not show stupid stuff. Here the affordance is its only long and thoughtful. Detecting the notes is easy.Quick, go to my profile and find my notes. They are there. But you gotta scroll down and look.Here, its only longer pieces and if I want to find Steven Levys posts I can. Easily. Google loves Medium.Im find Medium showing up on Google. Facebook, on the other hand, is penalise by Google. In part because Googles spiders cant figure out whats valuable there. In part because often Googles spiders cant even get to your content there( thanks to Facebook being a walled off garden thats not available to the open Webgo try to watch one of my videos if you dont have a Facebook account ). In part because Google merely develops its spiders to not treat Facebook content as well as other content. Can you blame it? Imagine if Google set Facebook videos up high instead of YouTube ones? Wouldnt that hurt Googles business? It sure would! Google has none of those problems with Medium. No ads.You did notice that Apple now enables ad blockers on iPhones and those ad blockers are amongst the most popular apps, right? People are tired of find ads everywhere and are tired of being tracked( not me, I ensure value in both, but I understand the individuals who dont ). Rich people dont want to see tons of ads next to them. Think about Richard Branson. Does he want a United Ad next to his blog? Nope. Beauty all around.Facebook did a great job on its new Pages. I hope its a trend to bring us a much nicer experience all the way around. But lets be honest. Some parts of Facebook are starting to feel like Microsoft Windows. And not the new 10 kind, either. While here on Medium everything feelings, well, beautiful.

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