Facebook, the Birkenstocks of Social Networks, Is Suddenly Cool Again

Everything norm is new again. Birkenstocks, the bulky, utilitarian footwear that my mom refused to buy me from Quakerbridge Mall are suddenly chic—like a "Remember the 90's" just for your feet. And so, one survey says, is Facebook.

After being mocked at the tech campus cafeteria because teens didn't want to use it anymore, Facebook is once again popular with younger users. The Wall Street Journal reports:

Forrester Research asked 4,517 teenagers about their social media use, and Facebook came out ahead–by a lot.

Nearly half of the respondents, who were all between the ages of 12 and 17, said they were using Facebook more than they were a year ago, the firm said.

Forrester's researchers predict that increasing smartphone usage will help drive even more teenagers to use Facebook, whose mobile app is one of the most widely used in the world. "As today's 12- and 13-year-olds grow into 16- and 17-year-olds, it's likely their Facebook adoption will increase further," the researchers said.

The report contradicts previous studies about social network use among teens, but the Journal notes that the report was co-authored by a Forrester analyst who previously criticized Facebook's ability to target ads. But the paper hedges its bets about Facebook's future cachet:

If teens were using Facebook less, it wouldn't be surprising. A service that gets older inevitibly loses some of its early cachet. And there are hundreds of copycat services and mobile apps aiming for the teen audience.

On the other hand, Facebook is such a widely used tool that teenagers may face pressure to at least open accounts. Facebook hopes that as teenagers get older, they'll use the service simply because it's practical.

I mean it already knows your footprint, right?

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[Image via Facebook]