Facebook Poke Application: A Sexting Fail
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), as a publicly traded company, has attempted to serve as all things to all people. Facebook leads an awkward mating dance between a motley crew featuring its own entrepreneurial employees, powerful money managers, speculators, human resource directors, law enforcement officials, consumer advocacy groups, and a reported 1.19 billion monthly active users.
As such, Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg are tasked with the assignment of balancing an “Aw, shucks” clean-cut and wholesome image against a Web 2.0 backwater of tough talk, trolling, and anonymity. The old sex sells cliché, of course, still holds. Numerous studies have estimated that pornography generates roughly one-third of all Internet traffic. Facebook community standards, however, state: “Facebook has a strict policy against the sharing of pornographic content and any explicitly sexual content where a minor is involved. We also impose limitations on the display of nudity.”
“Selfies” and “sexting” may be thought of as a natural yet bawdy extension of the Web 2.0 revolution. The term “selfie” may be defined as shorthand for a self-portrait taken with a smartphone. Taken further, “sexting” refers to the exchange of provocative text messages, pictures, and videos between users. Sexting, of course, has come under fire from numerous consumer watchdog groups, which cite privacy concerns alongside unfettered teenage access to Web 2.0 platforms as rationale to criticize if not regulate the flirtatious practice.
Still, the recent expansion of Facebook Poke may serve as evidence that Menlo Park has made an attempt to leverage the sexting game. Zuckerberg and Co., however, have been reduced to peeping Toms who remain on the outside looking in, while Snapchat corners this racket.