News

Facebook Is So Big, Summit Can’t Ignore It

3/15/2010 12:19 PM Eastern

More evidence that Facebook is unavoidable:
the social-media giant was a sometimes hot topic of
conversation at the Bloomberg BusinessWeek Media Summit
in New York last week.

During a panel session on the Economics of Media, participants
were asked if media had reached a “crescendo
moment” with
400 million Facebook
users worldwide.
Maybe, but
Univision Interactive
Media president
Kevin Conroy
said the types of audience
engagement
on Facebook and
the TV are vastly
different.

“Television continues,
as a single-reach
vehicle, to reach the
most people at any
given point in time,”
Conroy said. “People
are not consuming
media with Facebook … Social
media is a piece of the puzzle, it’s
not the puzzle.”

In a keynote on March 10,
CNN president Jonathan Klein
said he was more afraid of Facebook
than of rival Fox News
Channel.

Klein said Facebook “friends”
are trusted sources of information
for many members, which
presents new challenges to
news networks. “We don’t want
the 1,000 people you follow on
Twitter to be the most trusted
source to you and yet, I mean,
face it … you listen to their recommendations,”
he said. “You
trust them. And that’s a challenge,
and we have to rise to that challenge. So I’m far
more worried about 500 million people on Facebook than
I am about 2 million people watching Fox.”

MediaCom North America CEO Doug Checkeris perhaps
put the phenomenon in the best perspective.

“My 17-year-old and my 19-year-old are on Facebook,
and I’m their ‘friend,’” Checkeris said. “How long can that
last?”

September