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Daily Facebook Usage Declines in US: Report

Features like Stories, influencer content and video are all contributing to more engagement and a slow but steady uptick in time spent on Instagram

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FILE - The Facebook logo is seen on a shop window in Malaga, Spain, June 4, 2018. (VOA)

Average daily time spent on Facebook by American men declined by three minutes in 2018 and is set to fall by another minute next year to reach 37 minutes, said a new report.

Facebook’s move last year to discourage passive consumption of content, especially videos, has impacted engagement, said the report by research firm eMarketer.

This year, US adult Facebook users will spend an average of 38 minutes per day on the platform (on all devices), said the report.

“Facebook’s continued loss of younger adult users, along with its focus on downranking clickbait posts and videos in favour of those that create ‘time well spent,’ resulted in less daily time spent on the platform in 2018 than we had previously expected,” eMarketer principal analyst Debra Aho Williamson said in a statement.

“Less time spent on Facebook translates into fewer chances for marketers to reach the network’s users,” Williamson said.

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FILE – The Facebook app icon is shown on an iPhone in New York. VOA

Engagement on Snapchat, meanwhile, has essentially plateaued. Instead of growing, time spent among users fell slightly last year because of lingering fallout from the app’s failed redesign and competition from Instagram.

“We now expect time spent among Snapchat’s adult users to remain at 26 minutes per day through 2021. Our previous forecast projected 28 minutes per day in 2019,” eMarketer said.

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The picture is somewhat brighter at Instagram, where user time spent is still growing. Average daily time on the Facebook-owned platform will reach 27 minutes this year among US adult users, according to the forecast that added the time spent would increase by one minute every year through 2021.

“Features like Stories, influencer content and video are all contributing to more engagement and a slow but steady uptick in time spent on Instagram,” Williamson said. (IANS)

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Salesforce CEO Calls Facebook as ‘New Cigarettes’ for Kids

Zuckerberg, however, has promised his employees to "fight and win" if Democratic presidential hopeful Warren wins the 2020 election and moves forward with her stated plan to break up the big US tech firms

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FILE - Attendees walk past a Facebook logo during Facebook Inc's F8 developers conference in San Jose, California, United States. VOA

Pitching for breaking up Facebook, US-based software giant Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff has called the social networking platform “new cigarettes” which are making kids addictive.

Responding to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s announcement that he will make a speech about his views on free expression, Benioff said the company must be held accountable now.

“Facebook is a publisher. They need to be held accountable for propaganda on their platform. We must have standards & practices decided by law. FB is the new cigarette – it’s addictive, bad for us, & our kids are being drawn in. We need to abolish section 230 Indemnifying them,” he tweeted on Wednesday.

Section 230 of the US Communications Decency Act of 1996 gives automatic liability protection to social media firm for any content posted by their users.

In an interview with CNN later, the Salesforce chief pushed for the breakup of Facebook.

“They’re also acquiring other companies and co-mingling (data)… they probably should be broken up because they’re having an undue influence as the largest social media platform on the planet,” he was quoted as saying.

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The Facebook mobile app on an Android smartphone. Wikimedia Commons

Zuckerberg was scheduled to make a speech on free expression on Thursday.

“Why I believe voice is important, how giving people voice and bringing people together go hand in hand, how we might address the challenges that more voice and the internet introduce, and the major threats to free expression around the world,” Zuckerberg posted.

Several US lawmakers like Senators Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren have been pitching to break up Facebook.

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Warren in fact successfully run a fake ad on the social media platform that claimed “Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook just endorsed Donald Trump for re-election”.

Zuckerberg, however, has promised his employees to “fight and win” if Democratic presidential hopeful Warren wins the 2020 election and moves forward with her stated plan to break up the big US tech firms. (IANS)