What happens after everyone’s on Facebook?

What happens after everyone’s on Facebook?

Will this ever happen?

ImageThe simple answer: it’s definitely possible. Though the world’s population just passed the 7 billion mark and is on pace to reach 10 billion by 2050, the use of social networking sites is also on the rise. But, wait, online social networking sites, like Facebook, are relatively young, compared to natural social networking like Humanity, which has been exponentially growing since the Industrial Revolution. The growth of online social networking sites would have to add everyone currently alive before eventually keeping pace with population growth. Considering that Facebook continues to grow at about 10 percent per year, this pace may be possible. Of course, the big limiting factor here is the fact that not everyone has access to the Internet. In fact, only 2.24 billion people are online, according to the latest figures from the International Telecommunications Union.

However, let’s pretend we live in a universally-connected world (which is very possible in the near future with continued development). Everyone has access to the Internet. Would everyone then make a Facebook account? The latest statistics from the Pew Research Internet Project tell us “yes.” Seventy-three percent of adults use social networking sites. With 71 percent of those online users having a profile, Facebook is far and away the most popular social networking site.

Great! Now, we’re all connected on Facebook. Now what happens? This is the playground of futurists and science fiction writers. As a fan of science fiction, I’ve read a few novels that include universal social networking-like themes.  Arthur C. Clarke’s The City and the Stars opens with the protagonist and his friends playing in a fully submersible virtual world. (I know some people who sometimes feel like Candy Crush and Mafia Wars are real life.) Of course, there are also lots of science fiction books and movies that depict futures in which people live there lives out in computer-generated realities (e.g. The Matrix). I don’t think this is our future, but I can’t  More often than not, science fiction is only fiction for a short time before it becomes fact. What reality will we choose to live in?

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