Why Facebook is better than Quora...or is it?

Why Facebook is better than Quora...or is it?

Summary: Facebook has launched its new product: Questions. Now, you can query your social graph for answers to things that interest you.

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Tonight, Facebook launched its new product: Questions.

It speaks for itself: you can now query your social graph for answers to things that interest you. You can answer questions, tag them with categories, and vote on the answers. Reminds me a little bit of Quora (and formerly Aardvark, now owned by Google).

Here are the reasons Facebook is better than Quora, and why it will eventually destroy Quora:

  • You spend a ton of time on Facebook every day. You are on there all day at work, I know you are. Don't try to hide it. Answering and browsing questions will make the Facebook experience more fun.
  • More engagement. When people ask questions in their status updates, there is usually more feedback and comments. Facebook will become less boring because people will be engaging with each other more.
  • What do you like? Remember all of those time you clicked "Like" on a brand you support, or a product you want? Facebook has been collecting that data and will try to surface it when you ask/answer questions. If they can integrate Pages, and your personal data from the rest of the web (Graph API), they are gonna have better advertising opportunities.
  • Way more social. I think people have more incentive to answer a question than comment on a status.
  • Facebook users who have never seen a question and answer site before might become addicts, and feel the Wikipedian-urge to make the web smarter.
  • Facebook developers/product designers have been using Quora; they've mimiced its features, and they can launch from the start with a higher quality. If I worked at Quora, I would demand that Facebook pay me for stealing my idea. Another reason why Facebook will come out on top.

But here is why Quora is not dead (yet):

  • Some people don't like Facebook. Quora is purely a question and answer community, so the quality of the answers might be higher.
  • Quora leveraged Facebook Connect (ha) to get tons of users and personal data, and have created an interesting product that people are addicted to.
  • Marc Andreessen spends a lot more time on Quora than he does on Facebook.

What's your take? Have you had a chance to try Quora or Facebook Questions? I love them both and I won't stop using Quora now because Facebook is playing the Q&A game. And Formspring is starting to really get my attention these days too...

Topic: Social Enterprise

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6 comments
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  • RE: Why Facebook is better than Quora... or is it?

    I think facebook has the edge obviously because of its massive community that's already addicted to what's there. momentum. Quora is (at least for me) more serious, more business-focused, etc. maybe that's the topics and people I follow though - haven't had the urge to explore beyond that.

    I think there's room for Quora too, but ultimately it's going to be hard to flat-out win against a brand with a community as massive and active as Facebook.
    mbarash
  • They will likely serve different markets

    I imagine a dichotomy will develop where Q&A on facebook will be more of the "How can I get my crush to pay attention to me?" variety and Quora will be more of the "What is the evolutionary purpose of dreaming?" (actual Quora question) variety. The former will be more popular and the latter will be more useful. However, Cosmo sells way more copies than the Economist so in the $$ game, Facebook probably wins. Which begs another actual Quora question: "Is the Internet making us stupid and shallow thinkers?" http://www.quora.com/Is-the-Internet-making-us-stupid-and-shallow-thinkers

    :-)
    JQanmlstyl
  • RE: Why Facebook is better than Quora... or is it?

    I think Aardvark is in its own category now that Google has bought it *and* is integrating it as a support/FAQ method for its products.
    lauraglu
  • RE: Why Facebook is better than Quora... or is it?

    There's definitely room for more than one Q&A service, we were even seeing that with Vark/Quora. <br><br>Quora is an impressive "knowledge sharing" service, it also does a killer job of curation. If Quora can figure out a way to keep the stupid people out, or at least frustrated, while continuing to expand its userbase (see: Wikipedia), it has potential.<br><br>But unlike Wikipedia, Quora is for-profit. Don't know how they're going to make money -- it's not a service I would pay for, yet.
    nsbarr
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