Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols
Best Argument: King
Facebook is here to stay
Emil Protalinski: Facebook won't be the king of the Internet in five years (that'll be Reddit, or Reddit's successor) but I do strongly believe it will remain the king of the social Web. That's because Facebook isn't just a social network; it's a platform.
Facebook may have started as a simple Web service, but it has very quickly expanded into many areas of the Web through various apps, plugins, and widgets. Even if you don't use it, or your friends don't, it's hard to navigate the Web without seeing a Facebook logo.
Comparing MySpace to Facebook is like comparing Lycos to Google. Lycos and Myspace are both known by most Internet users of their respective times, but they weren't here for long. Facebook and Google are.
Facebook has multiple fingers in many pies. Facebook is entrenched. Facebook is here to stay.
Facebook's future fiasco
Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols: In 2008, Facebook nearly had as many users as MySpace. 58.4 million unique visitors at year's end vs. 55.2 million to be exact.
The fastest growing sites were Twitter, Tagged, and Ning. A bit more than four years later, MySpace has been sold for peanuts and does anyone use Tagged or Ning?
And you think just because Facebook is hot now that it's going to continue to hold its fans for five years? Ha!
Facebook's fiasco of an IPO shows a company headed for business disaster. Users won't care. But, fed up with Facebook's endless interface and privacy changes, they will start abandoning ship.
Like AOL long before it, Facebook is wildly popular now, but that won't last any longer than AOL's dial-up modem empire. Anyone can create a social network today. Google+, Pinterest, Diaspora, some social network no one's ever heard of, the question isn't: “Will Facebook fall?” It's when.