If someone asks you, “What’s Facebook?” what would be your reaction be?

For most of us, we would react with a dumbfounded look as if he/she is from another planet. In this century, the “Facebook” became a buzzword synonymous with the new way of social interaction.

Anyway, what’s Facebook?

Facebook, a social networking service and website, provides diverse services to its users. Users can upload photos/videos, write notes, and send/receive messages to share information with their friends. Facebook was launched in February 2004, and it has become dominant on the Internet since that time. It now has more than 600 million active users worldwide and the number of users keeps increasing.

According to Lou Kerner, the vice president of Equity Research at Wedbush Securities, it has become harder and harder to detach our Internet life from social networking websites.  This phenomenon has led many other websites, such as Google, Yelp and Yahoo, to provide social networking services to make their original services more interesting and useful to attract more people. Among the tremendous number of social networking websites, Facebook has taken the #1 place on the Internet in the past few years, and Kerner calls Facebook “the second Internet.” It is mostly because Facebook became a virtual passport on the Internet, as it allows its users to integrate Facebook with many other preferred websites easily. For example, a user of Facebook does not need to fill out his/her personal information again when he/she joins most other websites, as long as the other websites have an integrate data system with Facebook.  As a result, many Internet users now spend almost equal time on Facebook as the amount of time spent on Google and other major websites to search, share and transmit information and ideas + their personal life.

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