By Alan Coleman on 28 Mar 2018
Is Mark Zuckerberg more influential than Jesus? That's our latest Wolfgang Bite and the first Wolfgang Bite. Get on over to Twitter and join the conversation after you watch this Wolfgang Bite and let us know what you think. Follow and join the chatter on Twitter using #WolfgangBites
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Facebook is going to announce it's quarter one financial results very shortly and I'm going to make two bold and very important predictions as to what's going to be announced.
Number one: I think this is the moment when Facebook gets to 10% share of global ad spend, so that's all money spent on advertising, online or offline, in the world, going to Facebook. That's a huge moment for the advertising industry.
Number two: I believe this is when Facebook announce they've reached 2.2 billion monthly active users. That's a really important figure because Christianity right now, at its largest point it counts for 2.18 billion followers. So when Facebook hits 2.2 billion, it's officially the largest community in the history of humanity.
What a moment. How influential exactly are they in our day to day lives? Well, let's just consider a few factors.
In terms of our relationships, the reason for Facebook existing is to connect us. So people are spending, on average, almost an hour a day on Facebook; on Facebook itself, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. So many of our interactions is through Facebook, so very influential on our relationships.
Facebook is clearly influential on our consumption habits, otherwise, advertisers worldwide wouldn't be giving them 10% of their budgets. A lot of talk at the moment involving third parties, like Cambridge Analytica, and how Facebook has been weaponised to influence elections. It seems they could be influencing how we vote and our governments as well.
Last, but really interestingly and something not a lot of people know, is Facebook influences how we feel. In 2014, Facebook embarked on a study in conjunction with Cornell and the University of California, and unbeknownst to the users, they had over 600,000 users in a data set. And within that data set they had a happy bunch and a sad bunch. And what they did was they manipulated their news feeds, so the happy bunch they dialled down the negative posts they saw from their friends, and vice versa for the sad bunch, they dialled down the happy posts they saw from their friends.
What they found was in both instances, they influenced those people's moods. So they made the positive group happier, they were more likely to post positive things and posted more frequently. And they made the sad group sadder in that they were more likely to post negative things, and post to it less frequently.
Now this is really important. Mark Zuckerberg's new years resolution is to make time spent on Facebook time well spent, and fair play to him, he has name-checked mental health as an issue that they care about, and a large part of this algorithm change that's been hugely influential in all of our Facebook news feed is he wants to show us more content from our friends and family, because studies show that that elevated our mood, and there are commercial reasons of course, we're more likely to keep posting on Facebook.
When you put all these influential factors together, how it influences our relationships, our shopping, our government, how we feel about ourselves. And now the fact that they are actually larger than Christianity, I think this is the moment where we can say Mark Zuckerberg is now more influential than Jesus.
That's our Wolfgang bite.
If you've got any comments, if you want to disagree, you agree, if you have any further thoughts I'd love to hear them. Hit us up on the #WolfgangBites, I'll be on Twitter for the next two days talking to you there.